Marlins Top Generals, 87-63, in ODAC Quarterfinals

Marlins Top Generals, 87-63, in ODAC Quarterfinals

SALEM, Va. -- The top-seeded and seventh-ranked Virginia Wesleyan men's basketball team defeated ninth-seeded Washington and Lee, 87-63, in the quarterfinal round of the ODAC Tournament on Friday afternoon at the Salem Civic Center.

The Marlins (23-3), shot 52.3 percent (34-65) from the floor, including 55.0 percent (11-20) from behind the arc in advancing to the semifinal round.

Junior forward J.D. Ey (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park) scored the game's first points and gave the Generals (13-14) a 2-0 lead 1:35 into the contest, before VWC ripped off the game's next six points to take a 6-2 at the 17:05 mark.

W&L trailed 11-6 following a pair of free throws by first-year guard Clay McClean (Charlotte, N.C./Davidson Day), but the Marlins reeled off a 13-2 scoring run, led by six points from senior guard Art Crew and five points from junior forward Chris Astorga to assume a 24-8 lead with 12:07 left in the opening half. 

The Generals trimmed their deficit to 13 points (26-13) at the 10:18 mark on a three-point play from sophomore forward Larry Whitaker (Bartlett, Ill./Bartlett), but VWC quickly pushed back out to a 20-point lead and went into the break with a 19-point advantage (45-26).

Virginia Wesleyan shot 59.4 percent (19-32) in the opening half, and made good on 7-of-10 attempts from distance. The Marlins also outrebounded the Generals, 17-14, and forced nine turnovers.

In the second period, the Marlins extended to a 24-point lead by scoring seven of the half's first nine points, capped by an Astorga dunk at the 18:12 mark. The Generals once again managed to trim their deficit to 13 points (54-41) with 13:18 left to play, but a 15-5 Marlin spurt ended any comeback hopes for the Generals.

Whitaker paced W&L with 20 points on 9-of-15 shooting, while also adding seven rebounds. Sophomore guard Kevin Gill (Richmond, Va./Benedictine) added 14 points, including 3-of-4 shooting from deep, and junior center Taylor Gilfillan (Raleigh, N.C./Enloe) chipped in 10 points and eight boards. 

Astorga led all scorers with 23 points and junior guard Chris Teasley added 15 points and sophomore guard DJ Woodmore netted 12 point and seven helpers. Junior guard Tre' Ford totaled eight points, eight rebounds and six assists.

With the loss, the Generals' 2011-12 season has concluded. Virginia Wesleyan awaits the winner of the No. Hampden-Sydney vs. No. 5 Lynchburg matchup.