Thursday, February 8, 2018

I'll Be Quirky: Elon

The Elon Greg Harris isn't this Greg Harris, who is not pictured here throwing with his left hand.

They probably should have stuck with Flying Dutchmen. The team only we refer to as the Dutchmen suffered another agonizing loss Saturday night, when Jarrell Brantley scored the winning layup with fewer than three seconds remaining as Charleston earned an 86-85 win in an instant classic at the Arena. While the loss puts a serious damper on the Dutchmen’s hopes of winning the CAA regular season title, they will look to begin a charge towards the no. 2 seed tonight, when they visit recent nemesis Elon, Here’s a look back at the loss to the Cougars and a look ahead to the Phoenix.

The Dutchmen led by 10 points early in the first half and trailed just twice in the final 9:09 of the second half, but the Cougars scored last in a wild back-and-forth affair that featured nine lead changes and four ties in the second half. The Cougars scored on eight of their final 11 possessions, including five in a row that ended with Brantley’s winning layup against Stafford Trueheart, who was in the game in place of Rokas Gustys. Brantley’s hoop capped a final minute in which three CAA player of the year candidates hit go-ahead baskets. Joe Chealey’s flat-footed 3-pointer gave Charleston the lead with 35 seconds left before Justin Wright-Foreman answered for the Dutchmen with 18 seconds to go. Wright-Foreman scored 17 of of his team-high 24 points in the final 10:24 while Eli Pemberton had 20 points and five rebounds. Jalen Ray (11 points) and Kenny Wormley (10 points) each scored in double digits off the bench. Gustys had nine rebounds and six points but was 0-for-5 from the free throw line before being pulled for Trueheart. 

3 STARS OF THE GAME (vs. College of Charleston 2/3)
3: Justin Wright-Foreman
2: Eli Pemberton
1: Jalen Ray

Justin Wright-Foreman 60
Rokas Gustys 33
Eli Pemberton 26
Desure Buie 8
Jalen Ray 7
Joel Angus 4
Kenny Wormley 3
Stafford Trueheart 1
Hunter Sabety 1

COACHSPEAK: “Oh man, heartbreaker. Just a heartbreaker here. Just a heckuva game, two great teams going head-to-head, toe-to-toe. I mean, they are really, really good teams. Really talented, really good players making really big plays. Big shot after big shot. That’s why it stings to come up so doggone close here.”

The Dutchmen blew a lead of at least 10 points and lost for the second time this season and the 16th time in the Joe Mihalich Era (2013-present). Both blown double-digit leads this season have come against Charleston.

vs. Charleston 2/3/18 (10 1st, L 86-85)
vs. Charleston 1/20/18 (18 1st, L 76-70)
vs. Delaware 3/3/17 (10 1st, L 81-76 CAAT)
vs. Towson 2/9/17 (10 2nd, L 69-65)
vs. Towson 1/19/17 (16 1st, L 86-80)
vs. UNCW 3/7/16 (12 2nd, L 80-73 OT CAAT)
vs. JMU 2/7/16 (14 1st, L 98-95 OT)
vs. UNCW 2/4/16 (20 1st, L 70-67)
vs. JMU 1/24/15 (14 1st, L 69-63)
vs. South Florida 11/25/15 (15 2nd, L 71-70)
vs. Delaware 2/19/14 (15 1st, L 81-77)
vs. Northeastern 1/25/14 (10 1st, L 70-57)
vs. Delaware 1/8/14 (13 1st, L 86-79)
vs. Belmont 11/24/13 (10 1st, L 85-75)
vs. Richmond 11/19/13 (11 2nd, L 74-63)
vs. Monmouth 11/8/13 (13 2nd, L 88-84)

Eli Pemberton went 10-for-10 from the foul line Saturday. It is the second time this season Pemberton has gone 10-for-10 from the line and the seventh time in the NAC/America East/CAA era (1994-present) that a Dutchman has been perfect from the line in 10 or more attempts. Pemberton is the first player to have multiple perfect games.

Eli Pemberton: 10-10 vs. Charleston 2/3/18
Eli Pemberton: 10-10 vs. Rider 12/9/17
Justin Wright-Foreman: 15-15 vs. UNCW 2/18/17
Zeke Upshaw: 12-12 vs. Towson, 2/22/14
Charles Jenkins: 10-10 vs. Delaware, 1/7/09
Carlos Rivera: 10-10 vs. Siena, 11/29/06
Danny Walker: 10-10 vs. James Madison, 2/8/02

Rokas Gustys went 0-for-5 from the line Saturday. It is the third time in his career he’s failed to hit a free throw (minimum five attempts). The Dutchmen are the first team this season to have a player go 10-for-10 from the free throw line and another player go 0-for-5 from the free throw line. Hooray us!

0-5 vs. Charleston 2/3/18
0-6 vs. Towson 1/19/17
0-8 vs. Coppin State 11/11/16

The Dutchmen reverted to form Saturday by playing a game decided in the waning seconds. Eight of the Dutchmen’s 12 CAA games, and 14 of their 24 games overall, have been decided by fewer than six points or in overtime. The latter figure is tied for most in the CAA with Drexel and James Madison, though the Dutchmen’s 10-4 record in “close shaves” gives them by far the best winning percentage of any CAA team in such contests. However, the Dutchmen are also one of just three CAA teams with two 20-point wins this season, along with William & Mary and Towson.

HOFSTRA 14 (10-4)
James Madison 14 (5-9)
Drexel 14 (8-6)
UNC Wilmington 12 (4-8)
Towson 11 (5-6)
Elon 11 (7-4)
College of Charleston 10 (6-4)
Northeastern 8 (4-4)
Delaware 8 (4-4)
William & Mary 5 (4-1)

While recency bias makes these nail-biters seem new and 90 games the Dutchmen have played since the start of the 2015-16 season, a whopping 50 have been decided by six points or fewer or in overtime. They are 30-20 in the “close shaves.”

Junior guard Justin Wright-Foreman scored at least 10 points Thursday for the 46th straight game. It is the fourth-longest active streak in Division I, per Hofstra SID Stephen Gorchov, and the third-longest streak by a Hofstra player since 1989-90 (as far back as my records go, at least at home).

Charles Jenkins 58 straight games 12/12/09-3/15/11*** 
Antoine Agudio 48 straight games 3/6/06-1/17/08****
Justin Wright-Foreman: 46 straight games 12/11/16-present
Juan’ya Green: 43 straight games 11/14/14-12/9/15 
Loren Stokes 41 straight games 2/20/06-3/14/07*** 
Loren Stokes: 34 straight games 1/14/04-1/31/05

***streak ended with the end of the player’s Hofstra career
****Agudio had three DNPs during his streak

Justin Wright-Foreman moved into the top 20 in scoring all-time at Hofstra on Saturday night, when he scored 24 points. Wright-Foreman moved past Demetrius Dudley and John Mills, who were tied for 20th place, and into a tie with Carlos Rivera for 19th place. He is 16 points away from moving past Roberto Gittens into 18th place.

In addition, Rokas Gustys, who reached the 1,000-point club two days before Wright-Foreman, remained in 30th place on the all-time list by scoring six points. He is 10 points shy of surpassing Richie Swartz for 29th place. 

18.) Roberto Gittens 1,240 (1997-2001)
19t.) JUSTIN WRIGHT-FOREMAN 1,225 (2015-present)
19t.) Carlos Rivera 1,225 (2003-07)
21.) Demetrius Dudley 1,220 (1991-93)
21t.) John Mills 1,220 (1941-43/46-47)
23t.) Brian Bernardi 1,186 (2014-17)
23t.) Juan’ya Green 1,186 (2014-16)
25.) Ted Jackson 1,159 (1958-61)
26.) Nathaniel Lester 1,139 (2007-12)
27.) Wandy Williams 1,132 (1966-69)
28.) Mike Moore 1,128 (2010-12)
29.) Richie Swartz 1,107 (1959-62)
30.) ROKAS GUSTYS 1,098 (2014-present)
31.) Ameen Tanksley 1,090 (2014-16)
32.) Derrick Flowers 1,069 (1987-91)
33.) Darius Burton 1,060 (1993-97)
34.) Percy Johnson 1,045 (1950-53)
35.) Jim Shaffer 1,022 (1991-95)
36.) John Irving 1,018 (1974-77)

Justin Wright-Foreman gained at least one spot on the Hofstra all-time scoring list for the ninth time in as many games since he joined the 1,000-point club on Jan. 7. Here is his ranking following each game:

Elon (Jan. 7): 35th place
Towson (Jan. 12): 33rd place
Drexel (Jan. 14): 32nd place
Delaware (Jan. 19): 30th place
Charleston (Jan. 21): 29th place
Northeastern (Jan. 26): 26th place
Delaware (Jan. 28): 25th place
UNCW (Feb. 1): 22nd place
Charleston (Feb. 3): T19th place

Rokas Gustys is just 105 rebounds away from surpassing the CAA’s all-time leading rebounder, Hall of Famer David Robinson (1,314 rebounds for Navy from 1983-87). At his current season average of 11.5 rebounds per game, Gustys would need to play 10 more games to move past Robinson. The Dutchmen are scheduled to play at least seven more games (six regular season CAA games and at least one tournament game).

The Dutchmen’s hopes of winning the CAA regular season title took a big hit Saturday with the loss to Charleston, which cost them a chance to move into a tie for first and instead sent them into sole possession of fourth place, two games behind the Cougars. However, since the Cougars will have the tiebreaker over the Dutchmen by virtue of the head-to-head sweep this season, the Dutchmen are, for all intents and purposes, three games behind Charleston with six games left in the regular season.

The Dutchmen are in the middle of a five-team gaggle within two games of each other in the race for the no. 2 seed. William & Mary and Northeastern are tied for second at 8-4 while Towson and Elon are tied for fifth place at 6-6. The Dutchmen have lost to William & Mary, whom they host in a rematch next Thursday, and split with Northeastern. They have beaten Towson, whom they face in the home finale on Feb. 24, and lost to Elon.

Hofstra will provide a video and radio feed of tonight’s game, as well as live stats, at the Pride Productions hub.

The Phoenix, under ninth-year head coach Matt Matheny, are 14-11 this season and 6-6 in CAA play. Elon beat Delaware, 89-76, on Saturday night to earn just its second win in the last six games.

The Dutchmen and Phoenix had no common foes during non-league play. In CAA play, both teams have beaten Drexel, Towson and Delaware, with the Dutchmen completing a season sweep of Delaware, Elon sweeping Towson and Elon splitting with Drexel. Both squads have lost to Northeastern, with the Dutchmen completing a season split, and William & Mary, which swept the Phoenix. The Dutchmen have beaten James Madison and UNC Wilmington, each of whom beat Elon, and been swept by Charleston, which fell to Elon. 

The Dutchmen, who were picked fourth in the CAA preseason poll, enter today ranked 166th at The Phoenix, which was picked third, is ranked 187th at

According to the efficiency rankings at, the Dutchmen rank second in the CAA in conference-only offensive efficiency (114.9) and sixth in conference-only defensive efficiency (111.3). The Phoenix rank fifth in the CAA in conference-only offensive efficiency (111.8) and fifth in conference-only defensive efficiency (110.3). predicts a 78-76 win by Elon. Per the wise guys in Vegas, for entertainment purposes only, the Dutchmen are 2.5-point underdogs. Hofstra is 9-11 against the spread this season.

Hofstra is 5-3 against Elon, which joined the CAA prior to the 2014-15 season. However, Elon has won the last three games between the teams by sweeping last season’s series and earning an 89-76 win in Hempstead on Jan. 7. Hofstra and Elon first opposed each other on Nov. 23, 2009, when the Dutchmen cruised past the Phoenix, 70-46, in a preseason NIT game at the Arena.

Bob McKillop coaching tree bias! (Matt Matheny played and coached under Hofstra alum McKillop at Davidson before taking over at Elon)
Not the ambidextrous Greg Harris bias! (The pitcher named Greg Harris who didn’t throw with both hands went to Elon)
First One Tree Hill bias of the weekend bias! (Actress Lisa Goldstein, who played Millicent on One Tree Hill, went to Elon, what, stop looking at me like that)
Not the manager of the Cardinals bias! (He’s Matt, not Mike)

No comments: