W&L Men's Basketball Notes - Week 2

W&L Men's Basketball Notes - Week 2

Game 3: W&L (1-1) at Methodist (0-1)
Date: Tuesday, November 20, 7:00 pm
Location: Fayetteville, N.C.
Series Record: W&L leads, 7-1

Game 4: W&L (1-1) at Shenandoah (1-1)
Date: Saturday, November 24, 2:00 pm
Location: Winchester, Va.
Series Record: W&L leads, 7-3

Game Notes

LAST TIME OUT  •   RUTGERS-NEWARK 78, W&L 73 (11/17/12)

Washington and Lee recovered from a 13-point first-half deficit to tie the game late, but fell to Rutgers-Newark, 78-73, in the championship game of the John K. Adams Tip-Off Classic hosted by Rutgers-Newark. The Generals (1-1) committed 13 first-half turnovers and fell behind 40-27 after a pair of free throws by UR-N first-year forward David Azoroh with 1:45 left in the half. The Scarlet Raiders (2-0) shot 51.5 percent from the field in the first half and carried a 42-31 lead into the locker room at intermission. Rutgers-Newark maintained a 13-point lead (56-43) with 11:27 left in the second half, but the Generals switched to a 2-3 zone shortly thereafter and went on a 13-0 run to tie the game at 56-56 following a pair of free throws by senior forward J.D. Ey at the 7:38 mark. Sophomore guard Clay McLean scored six points to key the run. The Scarlet Raiders then went on an 8-2 spurt that featured a pair of three-pointers, but junior guard Kevin Gill answered with a pair of threes sandwiched around a dunk by Ey to tie the score at 66-66 with 3:54 left in the game. Rutgers-Newark took the lead back (68-66) on a layup by senior guard Al'Don Muhammad 1:13 later, and he scored six more points in the final 41 seconds as the Scarlet Raiders pulled away for the five-point win. Washington and Lee committed just five turnovers in the second half and finished with a 31-28 advantage on the boards.  As a team, the Generals shot 46.3 percent (25-54) from the field and hit 11-of-20 (.550) three-pointers. McLean led W&L with a career-high 20 points and four assists, while Ey totaled 15 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals.  Gill scored 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting from three-point range, and junior center Drew Kimberly chipped in nine points and eight rebounds. Muhammad led UR-N with 20 points and six assists, while sophomore guard Doze Ikwuegbu and sophomore forward Christian Garcia scored 16 points apiece. Ikwuegbu added eight assists and four rebounds.

W&L built a 24-point lead by halftime and cruised to an 83-57 win over Methodist in game one of the W&L Invitational at the Warner Center last December 29. The Generals began the game hitting four of their first five shots from the floor, including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc, to open an 11-0 lead by the 16:49 mark. The Monarchs got on the board when junior forward Kyle Combs knocked down a triple with 16:29 to play, and a jumper by sophomore guard Bryan Hockaday trimmed the Monarchs' deficit to six points (11-5) at the 15:17 mark. The Generals' lead was eight points (26-18) with 7:38 to play before W&L ended the half on a game-clinching 22-6 run to take a 48-24 lead at the break. First-year guard Javon McDonald scored seven points during the run and junior forward J.D. Ey added six points. In the second period, W&L extended its lead to as many as 35 points as it cruised to the 26-point win. For the game, W&L shot 56.6 percent (30-53) from the floor and connected on 13-of-24 (.542) shots from beyond the arc, one short of tying the school record for made triples in a contest. MU finished the contest hitting on just 32.2 percent (19-59) of its field goal attempts. McDonald finished with a game-high 18 points, Ey finished with 16 points and junior forward Jeremy Adkins added 15 points on 5-for-6 shooting from beyond the arc. Ey also grabbed nine boards, handed out five assists and blocked three shots. The Monarchs were led by Combs, who netted 14 points. Sophomore guard Tyre Blakely added eight points off the bench for the Monarchs.

The Monarchs suffered a 91-74 home loss to Lynchburg in their lone game of the season thus far. As a team, Methodist shot just 33.3 percent (26-78) from the floor while LC shot 43.5 percent (30-69) from the field, including hitting on 7-of-17 attempts from long range. The Monarchs also shot just 58.1 percent from the line (18-31). Methodist out-rebounded the Hornets, 51-46, but also turned the ball over 22 times, including 13 times in the opening 20 minutes. James Whitehead led MU with 17 points on 6-for-16 shooting,  and Johnel Jones added 13 points. Bryan Hockaday chipped in a double-double (11 pts/12 rebs) and Kyle Combs finished with nine points and seven rebounds. Tabias Hilliard added seven points and seven assists. The Generals lead the all-time series, 7-1, with the Monarchs only victory coming at W&L in the 1975 NCAA Tournament. Washington and Lee last played at Fayetteville on January 20, 2010, and came away with a 59-53 victory.

The Generals saw four starters score in double figures and the team led wire-to-wire in posting an 80-65 win over Shenandoah last November 22 at Shingleton Gymnasium. A pair of free throws by junior forward J.D. Ey just 16 seconds into the contest gave W&L a 2-0 lead that it would never surrender. In the first half, the Generals would go up by as many as 13 points (23-10) on a pair of free throws by sophomore forward Larry Whitaker at the 10:36 mark. The Hornets trimmed the W&L lead to seven points (27-20) following a three pointer from Dominic Chappell with 5:48 to play in the opening period. The W&L lead remained at seven points (33-26) with 1:58 left, but back-to-back three pointers by junior forward Jeremy Adkins gave the Generals a 39-26 lead at the 1:17 mark. SU's Avery Green made a short jumper with 26 seconds to play to produce a 39-28 score at the break. In the second period, SU crept as close as six points as late as the 12:13 mark, but the Generals, behind 15 second-half points from Whitaker and 12 second-half points from Ey, were able to keep the Hornets at bay until pulling away late. Whitaker finished the contest with a career-high 21 points, to go with 11 rebounds. Ey finished with 18 points, nine rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks. Adkins added 14 points, including 4-of-9 shooting from deep, and sophomore guard Kevin Gill chipped in 11 points. Gill and Adkins each grabbed five boards and senior guard Kyle Bond handed out five assists off the bench. SU was led by Chappell, who scored a team-high 18 points and grabbed five rebounds. Bryce Mitchell tallied 12 points, James Bowens registered 11 and Green 10 for the Hornets.  

Shenandoah is 1-1 to start the year after falling in the championship of its own BB&T Tip-Off to Centenary College, 80-69, on Friday, November 16. Junior guard Bryce Mitchell led the team with 14 points, while sophomore guard Jared Carithers chipped in 13. The Hornets advanced to the championship with a 96-23 victory over Patrick Henry on Thursday, November 15. SU had 18 players see action in the game with first-year guard Will Baggett leading the team with 12 points. The Hornets average 82.5 points per game on 51.6 percent (66-128) shooting. The Generals lead the all-time series, 7-3, including last year's 80-65 win. W&L won the first six games in the series, which started on February 3, 1977. The Hornets earned their first victory over the Generals in 1983 with the team not playing again until 2000. Washington and Lee is 2-2 all-time at Shenandoah.

Adam Hutchinson (Amherst, '93) is in his 10th season as the head coach at Washington and Lee. He earned his 100th victory at W&L in the season-opening win against Tufts at the John K. Adams Tip-Off Classic. He now has a 100-136 (.424) record, and became the second coach in school history to reach the 100-win plateau. Last season, Hutchinson passed Harry (Cy) Young for second all-time in coaching wins at W&L. The 2008 ODAC Coach of the Year, Hutchinson led his 2009 team to the ODAC Championship game for the first time since 1989. In his 13 seasons of coaching, Hutchinson has an overall record of 133-202 (.397).

Coming off the bench for the Generals, sophomore guard Clay McLean was instant offense for W&L in the first two games. He is averaging 17.5 points in just 18.5 minutes per game. He's doing it on 57.1 percent (12-21) from the field, 60 percent (3-5) from three and 80 percent (8-10) from the charity stripe. In the championship of the John K. Adams Tip-Off Classic, he totaled 20 points and four assists. The points and assists totals were both career highs. McLean's previous career-high in points was 17 and two in assists. With his two-game performance last weekend, he earned a spot on the classic's all-tournament team.

Junior guard Kevin Gill punished defenses this weekend if they gave him an inch of space to shoot the ball. He scored 17 points in the season-opening win over Tufts on 5-of-8 shooting from the field and 6-of-6 from the line. He also dished out a career-best four assists. Against Rutgers-Newark he drilled four threes en route to 12 points, all coming in the second half. He's averaging 14.5 points per game, and doing most of his damage from deep. He is shooting 62.5 percent (5-8) from behind the arc. Gill's hot shooting from long range carried over to the rest of the team as the Generals shot over 50 percent in both games from the three-point line. W&L is 17-of-30 for 56.7 percent on the season, which leads the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. Virginia Wesleyan and Randolph are the only other teams in the conference shooting at over a 45 percent clip.

Opposing offenses always have to be weary of where J.D. Ey is on the Generals' defense. In two games, the senior forward is averaging 2.5 blocks, 1.5 steals and 7.0 rebounds per game. He recorded four blocks in W&L's win over Tufts and notched three steals in the five-point loss to Rutgers-Newark. He also grabbed the 600th rebound of his career during the contest and now has 602 in 83 games for a 7.3 average. He also makes an impact on the offensive end. He is averaging 12.5 points per game on 55.6 percent (10-18) from the floor, a perfect 4-of-4 from the foul line and is 1-of-3 behind the arc. He totaled 10 points in the season-opener and 15 against the Scarlet Raiders. Ey is also tied for the team lead in assists per game (3.5) with Kevin Gill.

In both games this season, the Generals have had at least three players score in double digits. Against Tufts, four players recorded at least 10 points. Kevin Gill notched 17, Clay McLean 15, sophomore guard Javon McDonald 14 and J.D. Ey 10. In the game versus Rutgers-Newark, McLean netted 20, Ey 15 and Gill 12.

The Generals will get used to riding a bus early this season with seven of their first nine games coming away from the Warner Center. After opening the season with a split at the Rutgers-Newark Tournament last weekend, W&L will play at Methodist on November 20 and at Shenandoah on November 24 to open ODAC play. The Blue & White hosts Randolph on December 1, and then make a quick trip to Ferrum on December 3. The team returns home on December 5 to face Averett, and ends 2012 at the Daytona Beach Shootout against Bates on December 19 and versus Marymount (Va.) on December 21. The Generals went 6-8 on the road last season and 1-1 in neutral-site contests.

W&L enters the season with five first-year players looking to make their mark and provide depth for the Generals. The class is comprised of two guards and three forwards. The two new guards are Franklin Wolfe and Darren Douglas. Wolfe played his high school basketball at Sanderson and is from Raleigh, N.C., while Douglas, who calls Elmsford, N.Y., home, competed at Rye Country Day. For the front-court players, John Martin hails from Huntsville, Ala., and completed his prep career at Randolph. Jok Asiyo, from Stroudsburg, Pa., competed at Pocono Mountain East, and Andrew Franz, a Charlotte, N.C. native, laced up his sneakers for Ravenscroft. Franz is the only newcomer that saw action in the first two games. He played against Rutgers-Newark and scored five points in 11 minutes.