Pilots lose but learn
The Portland Pilots will count the PK80 Invitational as valuable experience for their young team.
The Pilots made a second-half push on Sunday but wound up without a victory in their three Victory Bracket games.
DePaul handed Portland (2-4) its third double-digit loss, beating the Pilots 82-69 in the bracket's seventh-place game at Memorial Coliseum.
De Paul (2-4) went on a 10-0 run after Portland cut the margin to seven points with 10 minutes left. The Blue Demons pushed their lead to 20 points with 4:13 left.
Franklin Porter had 16 points and four assists, Marcus Shaver Jr. had 15 points and Josh McSwiggan 14 for the Pilots. Philipp Hartwich had 12 rebounds and three blocked shots.
Portland coach Terry Porter said early struggles on offense set the tone of the game.
"They hurt us early by making shots," Porter said. "And we let our offense affect our defense at times, not getting back."
DePaul led 8-0 and 36-17 midway through the first half and was up by 16 points at halftime. The Pilots' 10 first-half turnovers aided the Blue Demons.
Portland turned over the ball only four times in the second half.
"We challenged them at halftime to take care of the ball and do a better job and they did," Porter said. "Offensively, the second half we played a much better ballgame. The disappointing part is the way we started. We got ourselves behind the eight-ball, and we never got a chance to recover."
Three-pointers from Shaver and Franklin Porter along with a Hartwich blocked shot and layup added up to an 8-2 run that got the Pilots to within 64-57 with 10:08 to play.
But DePaul answered. Marin Maric scored five points and Tre'Darius McCallum four in the 10-0 push to repel any Pilots hope.
Max Strus had 21 points to lead the Blue Demons. Maric had 19 points and 13 rebounds, leading DePaul to a 41-20 advantage on the boards.
DePaul outscored Portland 30-18 in the paint, 19-12 off turnovers and 14-7 on fast-breaks.
The Pilots were 14 of 27 from 3-point range and only 10 of 26 from inside the arc. Franklin Porter made all four of his 3-pointers, and McSwiggan was 4 for 8 from distance.
Portland will continue nonconference play on Thursday at Chiles Center against Multnomah.