Nov 26, 2012, 7:17 PM EDT
There are two games on tonight’s schedule as Georgia State hosts East Carolina and Towson visits local rival Loyola, but first let’s take a look back at the action over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
Northeastern earned wins over UC Riverside and previously unbeaten Belmont to advance to the championship game of the Great Alaska Shootout. The Huskies rallied from a 16-point second-half deficit to knock off Belmont as senior Joel Smith hit 6-of-9 threes and poured in a season-best 26 points. Smith, who was named to the all-tournament team along with sophomore Quincy Ford, has now made 179 treys in his career and needs two more to take over third place on NU’s all-time list. The Huskies also got a clutch effort from freshman David Walker, who knocked down a three with 58 seconds left to put NU ahead of Belmont, and then followed with a career-high 13 points in a 67-59 loss to Charlotte in the title game. The Huskies are off to a solid 4-2 start and should get All-CAA guard Jonathan Lee back in the next few weeks.
Delaware gave Kansas State all it could handle in the semifinals of the NIT Season Tip-Off Tournament before falling 66-63 last Wednesday. Junior Devon Saddler was spectacular against the Wildcats with a career-high 32 points versus the Wildcats. He also scored 28 points against Pittsburgh on Friday and 25 points at Temple on Sunday to earn CAA Player of the Week accolades. Senior center Jamelle Hagins contributed 12 points and 15 rebounds vs. KSU despite missing much of the second half with leg cramps and broke loose for a career-high 29 points and 12 boards at Temple. Hagins is among the nation’s leaders in rebounding at 11.8 rpg.
Georgia State completed a 3-0 week in the subregional of the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic by edging South Alabama, 75-73. Junior Manny Atkins led the Panthers with 26 points and freshman R.J. Hunter added a career-best 25 points to garner CAA Rookie of the Week honors. The Panthers, who are 16-3 at home under coach Ron Hunter, look to continue their success at the Sports Arena as they host East Carolina tonight.
UNCW put together back-to-back home wins over Wofford and Hampton to even its record at 3-3. Senior forward Keith Rendleman posted season-highs of 23 points and 15 rebounds against HU and sophomore Cedrick Williams recorded a double-double in the Wofford win with 10 points and a career-high 15 boards. After struggling defensively in three straight road losses, the Seahawks limited Wofford to 37 points on just 29.4% FG shooting and forced 16 turnovers.
Drexel went 1-2 against a strong field at the DirecTV Classic in Anaheim. The Dragons finished the event by beating Rice 55-47 on Sunday. Junior Frantz Massenat averaged 18.3 ppg in the event with 17 or more points in each game. The Dragons also got 2012 CAA Rookie of the Year Damion Lee back in the lineup and he contributed 19 points against Xavier and 16 versus Rice.
George Mason pulled out a thrilling 48-46 win over Boston University on Saturday as junior Bryon Allen converted a layup and free throw with 0.2 seconds remaining. The Patriots are now 17-1 at home under coach Paul Hewitt. One interesting stat: Mason is currently leading the CAA in scoring defense (57.0 ppg) after topping the conference in scoring offense (70.4 ppg) a year ago.
Hofstra freshman forward Jimmy Hall continued to play well in a pair of road games last week. Hall posted his third double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds at Manhattan and followed with 13 points and eight boards at GW. Also giving the Pride a lift was sophomore guard Taran Buie. The Penn State transfer was Hofstra’s top scorer in both contests with 22 points at Manhattan and 15 at GW.
JMU senior Rayshawn Goins earned All-Tournament honors at the Legends Classic after averaging 15.3 ppg and 9.7 rpg over the three games. The burly forward posted team-highs of 20 points and 15 rebounds at Duquesne and netted a team-high 21 points in a win over Youngstown State. Freshman Andre Nation also had a good week, chipping in 11.8 ppg.
Old Dominion fell at home to VMI last Wednesday despite a career-high 21 points in just 22 minutes from sophomore guard Dimitri Batten. Batten was 4-of-7 from three-point range. The Monarchs continue to get contributions from several freshmen, including Deion Clark, who scored a career-high 12 points in a setback at Murray State on Saturday.
Towson has been off since last Monday when it capped a 3-1 performance in the Comfort Suites Invitational by crushing Cincinnati Christian. Three Tigers – Jerrelle Benimon, Bilal Dixon and Marcus Damas – made the all-tournament team. Towson has scored at least 69 points in four straight games after not scoring more than 69 in any games a year ago.
William & Mary dropped a 72-59 decision to Miami (Ohio) and then lost 63-57 at Wake Forest in a game it led much of the way. Junior Brandon Britt netted a team-high 17 points versus Miami, while sophomore Marcus Thornton led the way with 17 at Wake. Britt, Thornton and Tim Rusthoven have combined for nearly 70% of the Tribe’s points thus far.
Check back on Tuesday as we look back on Monday night’s games and see how CAA players and teams are stacking up in the first set of NCAA statistics.
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