Junior guard Charlie Moore poured in 13 of his game-high 27 points down the stretch to lead DePaul to a 70-59 nonconference victory over Fairleigh Dickinson on Friday night in Chicago.
DePaul, off to its second 3-0 start in a row, received 13 points from junior center Jaylen Butz and 12 points and 10 rebounds from junior forward Paul Reed.
Fairleigh Dickinson (1-1), which graduated its top two players from last year's squad that reached the NCAA Tournament, was paced by junior guard Jahlil Jenkins' 17 points. Junior forward Elyjah Williams and senior forward Kaleb Bishop each added 12 points. Williams had a team-high eight rebounds.
The final score belied the game's nature as the Blue Demons and Knights swapped the lead 19 times during the first 32 minutes. DePaul took a 16-14 edge -- the game's eighth lead change -- when Arkansas transfer Darious Hall fed Butz for a layup with 11:37 to go in the first half.
Then both teams went cold. The Blue Demons failed to score for five minutes, and Fairleigh Dickinson subsequently claimed a 24-18 lead on Williams' layup with 5:43 left.
The Knights didn't make another field goal the rest of the half as DePaul went on a 16-4 spree to regain a 34-28 edge by the break. Moore scored eight of his game-high 11 points during that stretch. DePaul could have led by more, but it converted just 9 of 20 free throws in the opening half.
Fairleigh Dickinson needed just two minutes of the second half to regain the lead. The Knights reeled off 11 straight points in 1:54 -- capped by Bishop's two-handed jam in transition -- to grab a 39-35 lead and inspire DePaul to take a timeout.
The Knights still owned a three-point lead with 10 minutes to go until Moore took over again -- scoring 10 points during DePaul's game-defining 14-2 run. Moore slashed the baseline for a no-look reverse layup, swished a 3-pointer from the wing, drove for a floater and then pulled up for a 25-footer in a 3:33 span to hand the hosts a 61-52 advantage.
Friday's game marked the third and final game assistant coach Tim Anderson served as DePaul's head coach. Dave Leitao, who was handed a three-game suspension by the NCAA in July, regains the reins when DePaul travels to Iowa on Monday for a Gavitt Tipoff Games battle.
--Field Level Media