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Slippery floor halts Gonzaga-Pitt game in Japan

The Armed Forces Classic between No. 9 Gonzaga and Pittsburgh in Okinawa, Japan, was cancelled at halftime on Friday due to floor safety issues. It was the season opener for both teams.

This season’s Armed Forces Classic was played on the United States Marine Corps Base on the island of Okinawa, south of mainland Japan.

The slippery floor caused Pittsburgh’s senior guard James Robinson to fall and injure his right cheek. Tournament officials and coaches gathered during halftime to assess the safety of the court and decided to suspend play.

Pittsburgh led Gonzaga 37-35 at halftime courtesy of 11 points and four rebounds from junior forward Michael Young.

Gonzaga was paced by senior forward Kyle Wiltjer, who hit three 3-pointer en route to a game-high 15 points in the first half. The Zags shot 14-for-28 (50 percent) from the floor, but the Panthers were able to convert on 11 of their 14 free throws.

Panthers head coach Jamie Dixon and Zags head coach Mark Few both addressed the crowd of Marines following the cancellation of the contest. Players from both teams greeted the troops in the stands after the announcement.

Pittsburgh is slated to host St. Joseph’s (Indiana) on Tuesday, while Gonzaga will return home on Wednesday to play Northern Arizona.

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