TAMPA, Fla. -- Victor Rudd Jr. scored 30 points to lead South Florida past Marist 81-67 Monday night.
Ron Anderson Jr., Augustus Gilchrist and Blake Nash each finished with 11 points for the Bulls (2-0). Gilchrist added 12 rebounds to help South Florida win in the second round of the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame Tipoff.
Rudd scored 10 of his points as South Florida, a Big East team, built a 32-29 halftime lead despite 37.9 percent shooting (11 of 29) from the floor.
"I've been bragging on him for a while, and I didn't want to eat crow," Bulls coach Stan Heath said of Rudd, a sophomore transfer from Arizona State. "But I think we saw a glimpse of how talented the young man is . and we just rode that wave."
Marist, coming off a 50-point loss Friday at Kentucky, shot only 42.3 percent (11 of 26) in the first half but scored the first seven points after the break.
Trailing 46-42, the Bulls scored 15 unanswered points to pull away after 10 lead changes.
Marist coach Chuck Martin is confident his team will benefit from competitive stretches against major programs when the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference race ensues.
"We're hoping that the experience, at least those 20 minutes in each game, we can build from that," Martin said. "Those guys are big and they're skilled. Our league is not like that."