February 7, 2012

W&L Men's Basketball Game Notes: Week 12

Game 22: 2/8/12 -  W&L (12-9, 5-7) at Guilford (15-6, 9-3); Greensboro, N.C., 7:00 pm
Game 23: 2/11/12 - W&L (12-9, 5-7) at Bridgewater (5-16, 2-10); Bridgewater, Va., 2:00 pm

PDF Version of notes HERE.

The Head General
Adam Hutchinson (Amherst, '93) is in his ninth season as the head coach at Washington and Lee. He has led W&L to a 98-130 (.430) 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 two 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 131-196 (.401).

Last Time Out  •  W&L 78, No. 21 Randolph-Macon 56 (2/4/12)
Washington and Lee had five players score in double figures and the Generals turned in a dominant performance on the boards in defeating No. 21 Randolph-Macon, 78-56, on Saturday afternoon. W&L turned in one of its most complete games of the year in halting the Yellow Jackets' 11-game win streak. The Generals limited R-MC to 29.6 percent (16-54) shooting, while shooting better than 50.0 percent (.506, 27-53) themselves. W&L also out-rebounded R-MC, 43-25. W&L opened the contest scoring six of the first eight points to assume a 6-2 lead at the 16:13 mark. A three by Zach Desgain pulled the Yellow Jackets to within a single point (6-5), but was answered by a 13-6 W&L scoring run that gave the Generals a 19-11 lead at the 9:00 mark. Junior forward Jeremy Adkins scored seven points for the Generals during the run. After R-MC made the score 21-14 just over a minute later, W&L answered with a 10-0 spurt to take a 17-point lead by the 3:28 mark. Junior forward J.D. Ey scored six points to fuel this second W&L scoring outburst. The Generals would lead by as many as 20 points late in the first half before four straight points from the Yellow Jackets in the final minute of the opening period made it a 37-21 game at the break. R-MC shot just 19.2 percent (5-26) in the first half and Ey recorded more rebounds himself (14) than the Yellow Jackets did as a team (12) in the opening stanza. The two teams traded baskets over the first three minutes of the first half before R-MC used a 12-3 scoring run over a 4:15 span to get its deficit under double digits for the first time since midway through the first half. Washington and Lee had another answer however, using a 16-6 run to push its lead back out to 19 points by the 7:25 mark and essentially put the game away. The Generals held at least a 14-point lead the remainder of the contest in snapping what had been a two-game skid. First-year guard Javon McDonald led all scorers with 16 points. Ey recorded his league-leading seventh double double of the season with 14 points and 17 rebounds. Adkins also finished with 14 points, Whitaker chipped in 11 and sophomore guard Kevin Gill contributed 10 markers off the bench.

Last Time Against Guilford (GC 96, W&L 67 - 12/7/11)
GC limited the Generals to just 36.2 percent shooting (21-58) while hitting on 60.0 percent (39-65) of its own field-goal attempts in posting a 29-point win. Following a Guilford timeout with the score tied at 11-11 at the 14:48 mark of the first half, the Quakers used a 17-2 run of the the next 4:07 to take a 28-13 lead . GC hit seven consecutive shots from the floor, while W&L was 0-for-5 with three turnovers during the run. Twice W&L trimmed its lead back down to 10 points in the opening half, but GC used a 16-6 run to end the half and take a 48-28 lead into the break. Senior guard Gabriel Lowder led the Quakers with 19 points on 8-of-12 shooting. First-years Matt McCarthy and Will Freeman added 13 and 11 points, respectively. First-year Javon McDonald led W&L with 20 points and sophomore Drew Kimberly added 12 points and six boards.

Scouting Guilford
The Quakers enter with a 15-6 overall record and a 9-3 ODAC mark. GC also boasts a 10-1 record at home. Most recently, senior guard Gabriel Lowder erupted for 36 points, including a 10-of-11 performance from behind the arc as Guilford defeated Roanoke, 89-72. The Quakers ended the first half on a 14-8 scoring run, then began the second period on a 14-1 spurt to turn a 28-28 game into a 56-37 lead. First-year Carson Sullivan added 10 points, five boards and three assists for Guilford. GC finished the contest shooting 51.6 percent (32-62) as a team and outrebounded Roanoke, 39-28. Lowder leads the team with 13.4 ppg and junior guard Josh Pittman is averaging 13.3 ppg. Senior forward Brad Monroe is posting a team-high 7.1 rpg. Guilford is the best rebounding team in the ODAC at 40.6 rebounds per game, while also being the second-most efficient team with the ball, turning it over only 14.5 times on average. Defensively, the Quakers allow the second-fewest points per game (64.6), while limiting opponents to only 40.3 percent shooting on average, also the second-best mark in the league.

Scouting Bridgewater
The Eagles enter the week at 5-16 and 2-10 in the ODAC. Most recently, BC lost, 66-62, to Lynchburg as a late rally came up just short. BC trailed by 10 (61-51) with 3:44 to play before outscoring LC 11-5 to close out the game. Aaron Adams led the Eagles with 14 points and Ed Reddick and Matthew Hunter netted 12 apiece. Cody Griffith leads the Eagles with 12.1 ppg and Adams and sophomore Ronnie Thomas are averaging 10.9 and 10.0 ppg, respectively. Bridgewater, losers of four straight, are the league's worst shooting team (.396, 496-1,252). BC shoots just 36.8 percent at home, compared to 42.3 percent on the road and is averaging just 66.4 points as a team, while allowing 75.1 points on average. The Eagles only average 63.7 points at Nininger Hall, while posting a scoring average of 72.0 on the road.

STRONG START = STRONG FINISH
Proving that getting off to a strong start is vital, Washington and Lee has recorded a 67-13 (.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 11-1 thus far in 2011-12.
 
70 or Bust
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 10-2 when scoring at least 70 points and 2-7 when failing to reach 70.

Fine Fifteen
In 27 games last season, W&L saw seven different players score at least 15 points in a game a total of 19 times, led by eight such performances from forward Jeremy Adkins. In 21 games thus far, the Generals have already had six different players record at least 15 points in a game a total of 25 times, led by Javon McDonald and J.D. Ey with nine and eight games, respectively, of at least 15 points. For Ey, the eight 15+ point performances exceed his output from his first two seasons combined. Adkins has four such games already.

Fine First-Year
With his nine15+ point performances in the season's first 21 games, first-year guard Javon McDonald has accomplished something that no rookie has done under the current regime. 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 previous highs under coach Adam Hutchinson, which puts McDonald in a position to be the most profilic scoring rookie under Hutchinson.

Double Double Machines
With a league-leading seven double doubles on the season, junior forward J.D. Ey now has 11 career double doubles. With one more, he would tie Ben Goetsch '10 for the most double doubles in a season (8) under Coach Hutchinson. Sophomore forward Larry Whitaker is third in the ODAC with five double doubles.

"CLAY" More
First-year guard Clay McLean quite literally exploded for a career-high 15 points in W&L's 21-point win over Emory & Henry last 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.

Protecting The Rim
Not only does junior forward J.D. Ey lead the ODAC with 51 blocked shots (2.4/game), but as of Feb. 5 and the lastest NCAA Statistical Rankings, he is slotted 13th nationally in blocked shots. He is also 42nd in rebounding (9.4/game). Additionally, his blocked-shot total is nearly TWICE that of Guilford, which has just 27 as a team. With his current total of 51, Ey is just four blocks shy of tying Zac White '10 for the W&L single-season record of 55 blocks. Blocks became an official NCAA stat in the 1885-86 season, prior to that, the W&L single-season record is 74 by Rob Smitherman in the 1978-79 season. White, Smitherman and Ey are all tied for the single-game block record (7) at W&L.

Been Awhile
The 9.4 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.

Free Throw Prowess
As a team, the Generals are second in the conference with a 70.7 percent mark from the line (362-512). The 512 attempts are the second-most by a team in the ODAC. W&L is led by first-year guard Javon McDonald, who ranks second in the league in both free-throw makes (91) and attempts (125), while ranking ninth in percentage (.728). In addition to McDonald, the Generals feature five other regulars shooting at 70.0 percent or better in senior Kyle Bond (.848, 28-33), junior Jeremy Adkins (.778, 35-45), sophomore Kevin Gill (.778, 14-18), sophomore Larry Whitaker (.705, 62-88) and junior Kelton Buchanan (.700, 28-40).

GIL"FILLIN" IT
While not exactly "filling it up", junior center Taylor Gilfillan put together one of his best games of the season in the win over Randolph-Macon. The 6-10 big guy totaled four points, four rebounds, three blocks and an assist in 15 minutes. He had totaled two points, six rebounds and one block in a combined 15 minutes over W&L's previous five games.






--GENERALS--