(Note: I have been terribly derelict about posting game recaps this season, partially because I’ve been busy with work and fatherhood but mostly because this season has been devastatingly depressing. However, I hate the idea of not properly archiving these games, so to speak, so I came up with a compromise that will allow me to chronicle #HofstraPun the season in a basic, quick-hit fashion. So welcome to The Good, The Bad & The Quirky. Or, as I like to call it, TGTBATQ. Pretty self-explanatory, and probably something I should consider employing from the start next year so that I don’t fall into this trap again. Enjoy!)
THE GOOD: SWEET FANCIFUL JESUS HOFSTRA WON! For just the fourth time in 22 post-arrests games, the Flying Dutchmen got to exit the floor with smiles on their faces. All caveats apply about the dismantled state of once-proud Old Dominion—with this result, the Monarchs officially locked up their first last-place CAA finish, hey, that means Hofstra won’t finish last!—but this was an impressively thorough win, the rare one in which there were more candidates for the 3 Stars Of the Game than spots available.
Four players scored in double figures for only the second time in the post-knucklehead era and Moussa Kone came one point shy of making it five. David Imes began an impressive final week of regular season play by scoring 15 of his team-high 18 points and pulling down five of his six rebounds during a monstrous second half. He hit four 3-pointers, one shy of his career-high. A mammoth final 20 minutes was also enjoyed by, of all people, Daquan Brown, who struggled badly in the first half but had all six of his points and all 11 of his rebounds after intermission. He had almost as many rebounds in a single half as he did in his first 17 games (14 rebounds).
Imes, Brown, Kone and Jordan Allen (10 points) combined to shoot 63 percent (19-of-30) from the floor. Taran Buie scored 15 points and Stevie Mejia more than made up for a second straight poor shooting night (2-of-11) by dishing out 10 assists and committing just one turnover. The Dutchmen used second half runs of 14-1 and 12-1 to pull away and limited Old Dominion to 4-of-22 shooting from 3-point land.
THE BAD: Hey, the Dutchmen won, let’s not get picky. Well, there was the blown 10-point lead in the first half, which Old Dominion ended on a 23-10 run to take a one-point lead into the locker room. And the Dutchmen almost blew another double-digit lead in the second half, when their 10-1 run was immediately followed by an 8-0 Old Dominion run. Buie (5-of-18) and Mejia combined to shoot just 7-of-29. But who cares? HEY HOFSTRA WON!
THE QUIRKY: The game was the Dutchmen’s first home conference game on a Sunday since Feb. 11, 2001, when the Dutchmen beat Hartford, 73-54, in Jay Wright’s regular season home finale. The 70-59 win was the Dutchmen’s second conference win by that score this season (William & Mary on Jan. 12). And my streak of home games attended came to a halt at 49 because of Islanders duty across the street. Perhaps I should attend home games less often: Since I started the blog prior to the 2008-09 season, the Dutchmen are 4-1 without me in attendance and 4-0 when both my wife and I are absent. That’s right: Everything is my fault.
3 STARS OF THE GAME (vs. Old Dominion, 2/24)
3: David Imes
2: Stevie Mejia
1: Taran Buie
46: Stevie Mejia
35: Taran Buie
28: Stephen Nwaukoni
18: David Imes
12: Jordan Allen
8: Moussa Kone
3: Daquan Brown
2: Matt Grogan
1: Adam Savion
***21 points vacated