W&L Men's Basketball Notes - Week 11

W&L Men's Basketball Notes - Week 11

W&L vs. No. 3 VWC - Jan. 30, 7:00 pm
W&L vs. Randolph - Feb. 1, 7:00 pm
W&L vs. No. 21 R-MC - Feb. 4, 2:00 pm


PDF Version of notes here.

Adam Hutchinson (Amherst, '93) is in his ninth season as the head coach at Washington and Lee. He has led W&L to a 96-128 (.429) record, including four-straight winning campaigns - the first time in over 20 years that W&L has accomplished such a feat. The 2008 ODAC Coach of the Year, Hutchinson led his 2009 team to the ODAC Championship game for the first time since 1989. Earlier this season, Hutchinson passed Harry (Cy) Young for second all-time in coaching wins at W&L. With four more wins, he would become just the second coach in school history to reach the 100-win plateau. In his 13 seasons of coaching, Hutchinson has an overall record of 129-194 (.399).

LAST TIME OUT  •   W&L 67, E&H 46  (1/15/12)
Washington and Lee limited Emory & Henry to 11 second-half points in posting a 67-46 win over the Wasps on Wednesday at the Warner Center. The Generals held E&H to just 17.2 percent shooting (5-29) and 11 points over the final 20 minutes as it turned a one-point halftime deficit into a 21-point win. Midway through the first half, W&L used a 10-2 run, including eight straight points from first-year guard Clay McLean, to turn a 13-10 deficit into a 20-15 advantage with 11:22 to play. E&H responded with a 10-4 run to take a 25-24 lead on a layup by junior guard Malcolm Green at the 6:31 mark. The Wasps extended their lead to six points (33-27) with 2:51 remaining in the half, but the Blue and White closed the opening stanza on a 7-2 spurt to enter the break down just one, 35-34. W&L opened the second half on a 10-0 scoring run over the first 4:56 to assume a 44-35 lead at 15:04, prompting E&H to call a timeout. Sophomore forward Larry Whitaker scored six points during the run, and the Wasps committed a pair of turnovers and missed each of their first six shots from the floor. A layup by sophomore forward Charles Smith broke E&H's scoring drought and pulled the Wasps back to within seven points at 44-37 with 14:10 to play. However, the Generals scored the game's next six points to take a 50-37 lead with 11:13 to play as E&H called time once again. Emory & Henry trimmed its deficit back down to nine points (52-43)  at the 7:16 mark, but W&L held the Wasps to just 1-of-9 shooting down the stretch, while connecting on four of its final nine shots from the floor and hitting all six of its free-throw attempts. The 46 points allowed were the fewest in a W&L win since the Generals gave up 46 to Randolph in a 64-46 victory on Jan. 30, 2010. For the game, W&L shot 43.5 percent from the field (27-62), compared to 32.2 percent (19-59) shooting for Emory & Henry. W&L also boasted a 47-33 advantage on the boards, including a 31-14 edge in the second period. W&L was led by Whitaker, who posted his fourth double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds. He finished 7-of-12 from the floor and added four steals. McClean added a career-high 15 points, including 3-of-4 shooting from behind the arc. Junior forward J.D. Ey narrowly missed his seventh double-double of the season with 13 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three blocks and sophomore center Drew Kimberly added nine points and a career-best 10 rebounds.

The 6th-ranked Marlins enter with a 16-2 overall record and an 8-1 mark in league-play. Most recently, VWC defeated CNU, 89-74, behind 25 points and eight rebounds from junior forward Chris Astorga. Trailing 27-19 with 6:52 to play in the first half, senior forward Donald Vaughn hit a pair of free throws to spark an 18-2 scoring outburst, that he capped with a jumper at the 2:33 mark as the Marlins assumed a 37-29 lead. Sophomore guard D.J. Woodmore added 22 points as all five VWC starters scored in double figures. On the season, Woodmore leads the way with 18.0 ppg and Astorga sits at 15.3 ppg. Vaughn is adding 14.0 ppg and a team-best 6.9 rpg. The Marlins are the third-highest scoring team in the league at 83.2 points per game and the second-most difficult team to score against, allowing just 63.2 points per contest.

The WildCats begin the week with an 8-11 overall record and a 3-7 mark in league play. Randolph has lost eight of its last 10 games after a five-game win streak had the WildCats at 5-2 to start the season. Most recently, Randolph upset H-SC, 61-60, on Saturday. Senior forward Derrick Woods-Morrow led Randolph with 22 points (9-11 FG) and nine boards and first-year guard Zach Desgain added 13 points (5-6 FG) as the WildCats shot 51.1 percent (23-45) from the floor, compared to 41.1 percent (23-56) for the Tigers. Randolph boasts the stingiest defense in the league, giving up just 61.8 points on average, but it is also the lowest-scoring team in the ODAC at 64.7 points per game. Junior guard Colton Hunt leads the team with 16.4 ppg and Woods-Morrow averages 11.5 points, 7.7 rebounds and is second in the conference with five double-doubles.

The Yellow Jackets currently boast a record of 17-3 and are among the hottest teams in the country, having won each of their last 11 contests and just entered the Top 25 at No. 21. Most recently, R-MC cruised by Guilford, 75-45, as the Quakers shot just 29.8 percent (17-57) from the field and 17.6 percent (3-17) from the deep. Senior guard Adam Desgain led R-MC with 20 points (7-8 FG, 4-5 3FG) and senior guard Calvin Croskey added 14 points (4-5 3FG) and four assists. R-MC is one of the most balanced teams in the league, with four players averaging at least 10.0 points, led by sophomore forward Lamar Giggets (13.0 ppg). Croskey (12.8), Desgain (12.8) and first-year forward Andre Simon (11.6) round out the Yellow Jackets' top scorers. Simon is also averaging a team-high 6.2 rebounds and is shooting a team-high 56.9 percent (82-144) from the floor

Proving that getting off to a strong start is vital, Washington and Lee has recorded a 66-13 (.835) record in its last 78 games when it leads at intermission and has compiled a 99-36 record (.733) over the last 12 years when leading at the break. Holding true to that notion, W&L posted an 11-4 record last season when holding a halftime lead and is 10-1 thus far in 2011-12.
W&L averaged a hair over 70 points per game last season at 70.5. Proving that the 70-point threshold was vital to the Generals' success, W&L posted an 11-3 mark in games where it scored at least 70 points. However, when the Generals failed to reach 70 points, the result was a dismal 3-10 mark. So far in 2011-12, the Generals are 9-1 when scoring at least 70 points and 2-6 when failing to reach 70.

In 27 games last season, W&L saw seven different players score at least 15 points in a game a total of 17 times, led by eight such performances from forward Jeremy Adkins. In 18 games thus far, the Generals have already had six different players record at least 15 points in a game a total of 20 times, led by J.D. Ey and Javon McDonald with nine and seven games, respectively, of at least 15 points. For Ey, the nine 15+ point performances exceed his output from his first two seasons combined. Adkins has four such games already.

The Generals play at home in each of their next three and are in the midst of a five-game homestand following a stretch of four straight games away from the Warner Center. Washington and Lee boasts a 38-21(.638) record at home since the start of the 2007-08 season, including this season's 5-2 home mark.

With W&L in the midst of a five-game homestand, look for the Generals' offensive efficieny to perk up. W&L features a 44.4 percent shooting mark in home games (187-421) compared to a 39.7 percent mark (253-580) on the road. Additionally, the Generals' prowess from behind the arc jumps to 40.0 percent (50-125) at home, compared to 28.7 (49-171) away from the Warner Center.

With his seven 15+ point performances in the season's first 18 games, first-year guard Javon McDonald has accomplished something that not many first-years have done in recent years. The last first-year to record at least 15 points three times in his debut season was Isaiah Goodman '09, who did it four times in the 2005-06 season. Femi Kusimo '08 did so four times as well in the 04-05 season. Greg Bienemann '08 and Chris Halkitis '07 each had eight such games as first-years, the highest totals under coach Adam Hutchinson which puts McDonald in a position to be the most profilic scoring rookie under Hutchinson.

Sophomore forward Larry Whitaker opened the season scoring at least 10 points in five of the Generals' first eight games, including a 21-point outburst in an 80-65 win over Shenandoah. Since then however, he has notched at least 10 points in only two of W&L's last 10 games. Additionally, after averaging 8.5 rebounds through the first half of the season, including four games of at least 10 rebounds, Whitaker has averaged just 5.7 rebounds in the last 10 games with a single 10-rebound game.

Junior forward J.D. Ey, who leads the Generals in seemingly every statistical category, sees a nearly 20 point dip in his shooting percentage in W&L wins compared to its losses. In 11 wins this season, Ey is shooting 53.8 percent from the floor and averaging 15.8 points, compared to 39.2 percent shooting and 11.0 points in its seven losses. He is not the only player whose success is vital to a W&L win.

With a league-leading six double doubles on the season, junior forward J.D. Ey now has 10 career double doubles. With two more, he would tie Ben Goetsch '10 for the most double doubles in a season  (8) under Coach Hutchinson. As of the Jan. 19, and the latest NCAA Statistical Rankings, Ey is ranked 41st nationally with his six double doubles.

Washington and Lee features a lineup rotation that goes as deep as 12 players most games. That depth has been vital to the success of the Generals this season, as W&L's bench has outscored the opposition's reserves 492-417 on the season. Junior forward Jeremy Adkins and sophomore guard Kevin Gill, who were each in the starting lineup for all or most of the season's first nine games, have been coming off the bench of late. First-year guard Clay McClean has seen his minutes and production increase of late. He has averaged 7.8 points in 14.4 minutes over the last six contests, including a career-high 15 points in the 21-point win over Emory & Henry.

First-year guard Clay McLean quite literally exploded for a career-high 15 points in W&L's 21-point win over Emory & Henry on Wednesday. The Charlotte native tied his previous career-high of eight points in a 1:07 stretch in the first half, as he sandwiched a layup around a pair of three pointers as W&L turned a 15-12 deficit into a 20-15 lead.

Not only does junior forward J.D. Ey lead the ODAC with 43 blocked shots (2.4/game), but as of Jan. 26 and the lastest NCAA Statistical Rankings, he is slotted 14th nationally in blocked shots. He is also 50th in rebounding (9.1/game) and T-50th with six double-doubles. This week, W&L will face the league's reigning shot block leader in VWC senior forward Donald Vaughn. He is currently second in the conference with 1.7 blocks/game (31).

The 9.1 rebounding average that J.D. Ey currently sports is tops in the ODAC and should he finish the season with a rebounding average north of 9.0, he would become the first General to do so since Skip Lichtfuss averaged 9.9 boards per game in the 1973-74 season.