Game 7: 12/6 - W&L (5-1) at Ferrum (5-0); Ferrum, Va., 7:00 pm
Game 8: 12/8 - W&L (5-1) vs. Guilford (5-2); Lexington, Va., 7:00 pm
PDF Version of Notes
The Head General
Adam Hutchinson (Amherst, '93) is in his eighth season as the head coach at Washington and Lee. He has led W&L to a 77-109 (.414) record, including four-straight winning campaigns - the first time in over 20 years that W&L has accomplished such a feat. He has increased his win total from one year to the next each of the past five seasons. The 2008 ODAC Coach of the Year, Hutchinson led his 2009 team to the ODAC Championship game for the first time since 1989. Hutchinson is currently the fourth-winningest coach in W&L history and if he were to match last season's 17-win total, he would move into a tie with Cy Young (89-61) for second all-time in wins at W&L. In his 12 seasons of coaching, Hutchinson has an overall record of 110-175 (.386).
Last Time Out • Randolph 68, W&L 66 (12/4/10)
Randolph College sophomore guard Colton Hunt's jump shot from the right corner with under five seconds remaining propelled the WildCats to a 68-66 win over W&L on Saturday afternoon. Following a Hunt layup, W&L found itself trailing by four points, 64-60, with 2:06 to play, but senior guard Jason Cimino answered with a three-pointer to pull the Generals within one point (64-63) with 1:47 left and the Generals briefly pulled ahead (65-64) following a WildCat turnover and a jump shot from sophomore forward Jeremy Adkins at the 1:28 mark. With fifty-four seconds left to play, Randolph junior guard Malcolm Nelson gave the lead back to the WildCats, 66-65, on a jumper of his own. Cimino then drew a foul on Randolph senior guard Caleb Pearson and split a pair of free throws with 40 seconds showing on the clock, tying the game at 66-66 to set up the game's dramatic final seconds. The Generals led by as many as 11 points midway through the first half (20-9), but the WildCats limited W&L to just 2-of-13 shooting from the floor in outscoring the Generals, 20-8, over an 8:21 stretch to assume a 29-28 lead with 1:55 to play in the opening period. However, W&L received back-to-back layups from sophomore center Taylor Gilfillan to take a 32-29 lead into the break. The second half featured 11 lead changes and five ties, all in the final 11:28, as neither team led by more than six points. As a team, W&L shot 44.1 percent from the floor (26-59) and outrebounded the WildCats 38-28, including 14-7 on the offensive glass. Junior guard Jon Guest led the Generals with 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting. Adkins finished with 11 points, first-year forward Jonathan Rice added nine points and six boards and Gilfillan chipped in eight points, six boards and three blocks. Sophomore forward J.D. Ey grabbed a game-high 11 rebounds, which tied a career-high.
Last Time Against Ferrum • W&L 76, Ferrum 62 (12/30/09)
Senior forward Zac White scored a game-high 20 points and guard Jason Cimino added 13 points to lead Washington and Lee to a 76-62 win over Ferrum at the Warner Center. W&L used a 15-4 run over the final 7:14 of the first half to turn a 22-17 lead into a 37-21 cushion at the break. Six different Generals scored during the run and the Panthers shot just 1-for-6 while turning the ball over four times. In the second half, Ferrum cut the Generals' lead to single digits at 50-41 when senior guard Jerrell Wade hit a layup at the 11:03 mark. W&L, which never trailed in the contest, quickly pushed the margin up to 14 points (57-43) on a layup by senior forward Andrew Payne with 7:43 to play. The Generals connected on 10-of-13 free throws in the last five minutes to secure the victory and halt Ferrum's winning streak at four games. White hit on 6-of-9 shots from the field as well as 7-of-7 charity tosses in reaching the 20-point plateau for the second time. Cimino was 3-of-5 from the field and 6-of-6 from the line. He also had a team-high five assists. Guard Jon Guest added 11 points and four assists. As a team, W&L was 17-of-22 from the free-throw line, compared to just 6-of-9 for Ferrum. The Generals also out-rebounded the Panthers, 38-29, and forced Ferrum into 15 turnovers. The Panthers were led by guard Daryl Hart's team-high 17 points. Wade added 15 points, while forward Nick English and forward Garry Brandt chipped in 13 and 12 points, respectively.
Ferrum enters the week with a a perfect 5-0 record and has not played since Nov. 29 when the Panthers nearly let a 10-point halftime lead slip away as they eked past Randolph College, 70-68 in overtime. Randolph College outscored FC 39-29 in the second half, but Pete Hamilton missed a potential game-tying free throw in the final seconds of overtime and junior guard Daryl Hart split a pair of free throws with one second remaining to keep Ferrum's perfect start intact. Senior guard Keith Crump led the Panthers with 25 points and six assists. Junior guard Marcus Mayo added 16 points and junior forward Derek Mitchell posted a double-double effort with 12 points and 14 rebounds. On the season, Mitchell leads the Panthers, averaging a 18.4 points and 12.6 rebounds per contest. He is shooting 58.5 percent from the floor (38-65) and he gets to line over six times (6.4) per game. Crump checks in at 15.8 points and 3.0 assists per game, while Mayo averages 9.4 points each time out. As a team, the Panthers are averaging 77.0 points per game, while allowing just 64.8. They can be careless with the ball, averaging 15.8 turnovers per game. In the first half of games this season, Ferrum has posted a + 44 (177-133) scoring margin, but has seen margin fall to just +8 (186-178) in the final 20 minutes.
Last Time against Guilford - Guilford 91, W&L 80 (2/15/10)
Top-ranked Guilford College used a late 10-0 run and connected on 14-of-14 free throws down the stretch to hold off W&L, 91-80, at the Warner Center. Following a three-pointer from guard Jason Cimino that gave the Generals a 67-65 lead with 6:50 to play, the No. 1 Quakers scored the game's next 10 points to assume a 75-67 lead with 3:55 to play on a layup from senior center Tyler Sanborn. The Generals managed to pull within six points several times in the closing minutes, but the clutch free throw shooting of the Quakers sealed the victory. W&L posted season-highs in three pointers attempted (34) and three pointers made (13), and shot 42.2 percent (27-64) for the game, while GC shot 48.3 percent (29-60). Both teams turned the ball over 11 times and Guilford had a slight edge in rebounding, 39-34. W&L was led by senior forward Ben Goetsch, who scored 19 points on 7-of-13 shooting and added seven rebounds. Senior forward Zac White chipped in 16 points and Cimino and guard Kyle Bond registered nine points apiece. Sanborn led the Quakers with a game-high 23 points and 14 rebounds. Senior guard Clay Henson scored 21 points, including 12-of-13 shooting from the charity stripe. Forward Martin Stephenson scored 13 points and guard Josh Pittman added 12 markers.
Guilford enters the week with a 5-2 overall record and a 1-0 mark in league play. The Quakers have won their last three games, including a 78-65 victory over Bridgewater on Saturday. In that game, GC shot 60.0 percent from the floor (33-55) and outrebounded the Eagles, 35-19. Junior forward Tobi Akinsola led four Quakers in double figures with 16 points on 7-of-10 shooting, while also grabbing nine boards. Sophomore guard Josh Pittman tallied 12 points, senior guard T.C. Anderson chipped in 11 points and six rebounds and sophomore guard Travis Tracy posted 10 points, four steals and three assists. On the season, Pittman leads GC in scoring at 13.3 points per game, while Akinsola checks in at 11.6 points and 8.4 rebounds per contest. As a team, Guilford is allowing just 60.3 points per game and its opponents are shooting a league-low .361 (144-399) from the field. The Quakers also have the league's best rebounding margin (41.4-33.6/+ 7.9) and they average a league-best 15.4 offensive rebounds per game.
Strong Start = Strong Finish
Proving that getting off to a strong start is vital, Washington and Lee has recorded a 50-9 (.862) record in its last 59 games when it leads at intermission and has compiled an 84-31 record (.737) over the last 11 years when leading at the break. Holding true to that notion, W&L has already posted a 4-1 record this season when leading at the break.
From 1998-2008, Washington and Lee had not defeated a ranked opponent in basketball. However, two years ago W&L knocked off a pair of them (No. 18 Roanoke, 68-66; No. 17 Guilford, 82-76) and last season, the Generals defeated another ranked foe, downing No. 9 Randolph-Macon, 65-57. , W&L will look to complete the trifecta this season as three of its conference foes are currently ranked in the d3hoops.com Top 25 (No. 3 Eastern Mennonite, No. 7 Virginia Wesleyan, No. 9 Randolph-Macon).
Taking The defensive
Last season, Washington and Lee led the ODAC in points allowed, surrendering an average of just 64.0 points per game. Thus far in the 2010-11 campaign, the Generals are surrendering an average of 64.5 points per game (5th in ODAC), including just 45 in a 59-45 win over Swarthmore. That defensive effort was the sixth time under coach Hutchinson that a W&L defense has allowed fewer than 50 points to its opponent and the Generals are 5-1 in those games. Randolph College is currently second the league with 51.8 points allowed on average.
Entering the season, depth did not figure to be too large a concern for the Generals as 17 players are currently on the roster. Thus far, W&L features 10 different players averaging at least 10 minutes per game and coach Hutchinson used 11 players in the first half alone of the season-opener against Dickinson. With that depth comes balance, as all 10 players that are currently in the rotation are scoring at least 4.0 points per game, led by sophomore forward Jeremy Adkins at 10.5 points per game. Sophomore forward J.D. Ey is second in scoring, at 9.2 ppg., and leads the Generals with 8.5 rebounds per game.
First-year forwards Jonathan Rice and Larry Whitaker and rookie guard Kevin Gill have made quite an impression in the early going. Among the first three players off the bench, each is averaging better than 13 minutes per game, led by Gill's 20.8 mpg. Rice has proven to be an effective presence in the post, averaging 8.0 points and 3.7 rebounds in 16.7 minutes per game. Rice is leading the team in field goal percentage, hitting on 56.7 percent (17-30) of his shot attempts. Whitaker is second on the team with 4.0 rebounds per game and his 10 offensive rebounds are tied with Rice for second on the team. Gill is averaging 5.7 points per game and has knocked down at least two three pointers in each of the last three games
Harris Heats up - Then Cools Down
Washington and Lee caught fire in its 87-78 win over Averett, connecting on a season-high 11 three-pointers, including 10-of-16 in the first half. Sophomore forward Hans Harris led the barrage, connecting on on 6-of-8 attempts from distance - just one short of tying the school record. After finishing with a career-high 20 points, Harris has gone a combined 0-for-4 from the field in just 15 total minutes in W&L's two subsequent games.
J.D. Ey has proven to be Mr. Reliable for the Generals through the season's first six games. The sophomore forward is currently second on the team with a scoring average of 9.2 points per game and is leading the Generals with 8.5 rebounds per game. In addition to leading the way in those two categories, he tops the squad with 2.0 blocks, 2.5 assists and 1.7 steals per game. He is on pace to far surpass last season's block (15), steal (23) and assist (24) totals.
Sophomore forward J.D. Ey's 8.5 rebounds per game are currently good for third in the ODAC and his 3.2 offensive rebounds per game rank second in the ODAC. He currently has recorded at least 10 boards in three-consecutive games, becoming the first General to grab at least 10 rebounds in three-straight games since Robert Miggins '94 accomplished the feat from Feb. 15-19, 1992.
Handle the Rock
In W&L's 87-78 win over Averett, the Generals turned the ball over just four times, forced 14 Cougar turnovers and handed out a season-high 19 assists, including a career-high six helpers from sophomore forward J.D. Ey. On the season, the Generals currently lead the ODAC in turnover margin at +6.50, averaging 12.0 turnovers committed compared to 18.5 turnovers forced per game. Additionally, the 19-4 assist/turnover ratio of 4.75 was the highest single-game ratio the Generals have recorded under coach Hutchinson.
With a win over Randolph, W&L would have matched its longest winning streak under coach Hutchinson at six games. W&L's 5-game winning streak was the second-longest streak since 1990. Since the 1970 season, W&L has featured 19 seperate winning streaks of five games or more and 10 of them have come since 1980. Just two of them have come since 1990. Both winning streaks of five games or more since 1990 have come under coach Hutchinson.
After ranking among the league leaders in free-throw percentage at 84.7 percent (61-72) a season ago, senior guard Jason Cimino finds himself hitting on just 40.0 percent (4-10) of his charity tosses, including just 1-of-6 in the final five minutes of games this season. As a team, the Generals are connecting on 62.9 percent (88-140) of their free throws.
Several Generals have gotten off to great starts shooting the basketball as W&L has connected on 45.8 percent (157-343) of its field goal attempts thus far. First-year forward Jonathan Rice (.567, 17-30) is one of six Generals currently sporting a shooting percentage of 50.0 percent or better. Also shooting over 50.0 percent is sophomore center Taylor Gilfillan (.559, 19-34), sophomore forward Hans Harris (.536, 15-28), first-year forwad Larry Whitaker (.529, 9-17), junior guard Jon Guest (.525, 21-40) and sophomore forward J.D. Ey (.500, 23-46).