Sunday, March 4, 2018

I'll Be Quirky: End of the regular season

When is the CAA Tournament gonna start, Marge?

The Flying Dutchmen concluded the regular season in winning style eight days ago, when they outlasted Towson, 91-86, to earn their fourth straight victory and clinch the no. 3 seed in the CAA Tournament. The Dutchmen will begin pursuing their first CAA title tonight, when they face sixth-seeded UNC Wilmington at 8:30 (!!!). Before jumping into the Seahawks and the CAA Tournament, here’s a quick look back at the win over the Tigers as well as the regular season.

Justin Wright-Foreman (27 points) bounced back from a quiet-for-him game to lead five players in double figures for the Dutchmen, who opened the second half on an 11-2 run and withstood a late rally by Towson. The Tigers got within two points with four minutes left before the Dutchmen scored on nine of their final 10 possessions. Desure Buie was 6-for-6 from the line down the stretch for the Dutchmen, who finished the game by hitting 11 of their final 16 free throws. Eli Pemberton and Rokas Gustys had 15 points apiece while Buie and Jalen Ray had 11 points each. Gustys added eight rebounds.

3 STARS OF THE GAME (vs. Towson 2/24)
3: Justin Wright-Foreman
2: Rokas Gustys
1: Eli Pemberton

Justin Wright-Foreman 71
Rokas Gustys 43
Eli Pemberton 37
Desure Buie 10
Jalen Ray 9
Joel Angus 4
Kenny Wormley 3
Stafford Trueheart 1
Hunter Sabety 1

Justin Wright-Foreman continued to join some pretty select company Friday, when he was named the CAA’s Player of the Year. Wright-Foreman is the fourth Hofstra player to win the award, following in the footsteps of Loren Stokes (2006-07), Charles Jenkins (2009-10 and 2010-11) and Juan’ya Green (2015-16). The four player of the year awards for Hofstra are the most for any CAA program since the 2001-02 season. Wright-Foreman earned second-team All-CAA honors last season.

In addition, Rokas Gustys earned second-team All-CAA honors while Jalen Ray was named to the all-rookie team. The All-CAA designation is the second for Gustys, who was named to the first team in 2015-16, while Ray is the second straight Hofstra freshman to be selected to the all-rookie team. Eli Pemberton made it last year. 

The Dutchmen ended the regular season with a four-game winning streak. It is the fifth time in the CAA era (2001-present) and the seventh time in the Defiantly Dutch era (1993-present) that the Dutchmen have entered the conference tournament with a winning streak of at least four games.

2015-16: Six games
2009-10: Six games***
2004-05: Four games***
2004-05: Six games
2000-01: 15 games
1999-2000: Four games

***Includes a Bracket Buster game (shudder)

The Dutchmen and Joe Mihalich continued to live up to their track records by going 6-2 in February. Since joining the CAA in 2001-02, the Dutchmen are 82-59 (.582) in regular season games played on or after Feb. 1. In addition, Mihalich is 106-57 (.650) as a head coach in regular season games played on or after Feb. 1.

The Dutchmen and Joe Mihalich also continued to thrive in home finales, i.e. Senior Day. With last Saturday’s win, the Dutchmen improved to 21-4 in home finales in the DD era while Mihalich improved to 17-3 in home finales as a head coach.

The 50-point second half last Saturday marked the sixth time this season the Dutchmen have scored at least 50 points in a half. The Dutchmen have achieved the feat in just five games (they scored at least 50 points in both halves against Molloy on Nov. 30). Since Joe Mihalich took over as head coach in 2013, the Dutchmen have scored 50 points in a half 21 times and are 17-3 in games in which they have at least one 50-point half.

59 (2H vs. Molloy 11/16/15, 96-64 W)
57 (2H vs. Coppin State 12/10/14, 105-64 W)
56 (2H vs. Drexel 2/17/18, 88-76 W)
56 (2H vs. Molloy, 11/30/17, 107-72 W)
55 (2H vs. Monmouth, 12/6/17, 85-84 W)
55 (2H vs. W&M 2/23/17, 96-82 W)
53 (2H vs. W&M 1/24/16, 91-63 W)
52 (2H vs. SBU, 12/13/16, 96-58 W)
52 (2H vs. Appalachian State 12/6/15, 86-80 W)
52 (2H vs. St. Bonaventure 11/28/15, 89-83 W)
52 (1H vs. Jacksonville 11/14/14, 94-61 W)
51 (1H vs. Molloy, 11/30/17, 107-72 W)
51 (2H vs. FAU, 12/3/16, 88-80 W)
51 (2H vs. Canisius 11/13/15, 96-85 W)
51 (2H vs. Vermont 3/18/15, 85-81 L CBI)
50 (2H vs. Towson 2/24/18, 91-86 W)
50 (1H vs. Auburn 11/19/17, 89-78 L)
50 (1H vs. W&M 1/2/17, 95-93 L OT)
50 (2H vs. Delaware 2/13/16, 77-66 W)
50 (2H vs. Towson 2/18/15, 87-82 W)
50 (1H vs. Fairleigh Dickinson 11/10/13, 80-58 W)

Junior guard Justin Wright-Foreman scored at least 10 points last Saturday for the 52nd straight game, the second-longest streak by a Hofstra player since 1989-90 (as far back as my records go, at least at home). The only player with a longer streak in the last 29 seasons is Charles Jenkins, who ended his career by scoring in double figures in his final 58 games for the Dutchmen. In addition, Wright-Foreman’s streak is the fourth-longest active streak in Division I, per Hofstra SID Stephen Gorchov.

Charles Jenkins 58 straight games 12/12/09-3/15/11*** 
Justin Wright-Foreman: 52 straight games 12/11/16-present
Antoine Agudio 48 straight games 3/6/06-1/17/08****
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

With his 27 points last Saturday, Justin Wright-Foreman jumped from 16th to 14th place on Hofstra’s all-time scoring list. Wright-Foreman surged past Dave Bell and Barry White (no, not that one) and enters tonight 19 points away from moving past Ken Rood into 13th place.

13.) Ken Rood 1,368 (1973-77)
14.) JUSTIN WRIGHT-FOREMAN 1,350 (2015-present)
15.) Barry White 1,344 (1966-69)
16.) Dave Bell 1,330 (1969-72)

Justin Wright-Foreman gained at least one spot on Hofstra’s all-time scoring list last Saturday for the 12th time in the 15 games he’s played since joining 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
Elon (Feb. 8): 18th place
UNCW (Feb. 10): 18th place
William & Mary (Feb. 15): 18th place
Drexel (Feb. 17): 16th place
James Madison (Feb. 22): 16th place
Towson (Feb. 24): 14th place

Justin Wright-Foreman also continued another climb last Saturday, when he vaulted into sixth place on Hofstra’s all-time single-season scoring list. Wright-Foreman (726 points) jumped past Charles Jenkins (junior season) and Speedy Claxton and enters tonight 21 points away from again moving past Jenkins (senior season) into fifth place.

5.) Charles Jenkins, 746 (2010-11)
6.) JUSTIN WRIGHT-FOREMAN, 726 (2017-18)
7.) Speedy Claxton, 706 (1999-2000)
8.) Charles Jenkins, 702 (2009-10)
9.) Bill Thieben, 696 (1955-56)
10.) Steve Nisenson, 681 (1964-65)

Rokas Gustys also gained ground on Hofstra’s all-time scoring list last Saturday when he scored 15 points to move past Ted Jackson into 25th place. Gustys enters tonight 15 points away from surging past the pair of ex-teammates, Brian Bernardi and Juan’ya Green, who are tied for 24th place.

24t.) Brian Bernardi 1,186 (2014-17)
24t.) Juan’ya Green 1,186 (2014-16)
25.) ROKAS GUSTYS 1,172 (2014-present)
26.) Ted Jackson 1,159 (1958-61)

Rokas Gustys’ recent rebounding pace slowed a bit again last Saturday, when he pulled down a merely human eight rebounds against Towson. Gustys, whose 1,295 rebounds are the most by a Hofstra player in the Division I era and the second-most in school history behind only Bill Thieben (1,837), is now 20 rebounds away from surpassing Hall of Famer David Robinson (1,314 rebounds for Navy from 1983-87) as the leading rebounder in CAA history.

At his current season average of 12.1 rebounds per game, Gustys would need to play two more games to move past Robinson. The Dutchmen, of course, are only scheduled to play one more game — tonight’s CAA Tournament opener against UNC Wilmington — which means they will need to win to allow Gustys to break the record at his present pace. However, Gustys has recorded at least 20 rebounds in 11 games, including three this season.

Senior Hunter Sabety, who drew his first start of the season on Senior Day, celebrated the occasion by going a perfect 3-for-3 from the field against Towson. It marked the sixth time this season and the eighth time in 62 career games he’s been perfect from the field (minimum three attempts). 

2/24/18: 3-3 vs. Towson
1/13/18: 4-4 vs. Drexel
1/5/18: 4-4 vs. James Madison
12/22/17: 3-3 vs. Villanova
12/12/17: 4-4 vs. SUNY-Stony Brook
11/10/17: 3-3 vs. Army West Point
1/14/17: 4-4 vs. UNC Wilmington
1/7/17: 3-3 vs. Charleston

Hunter Sabety and Rokas Gustys each managed to improve their field goal percentages last Saturday — no small feat considering where they started the game. Sabety enhanced his chances of becoming the first player in the DD era to shoot better than 70 percent from the field while Gustys (6-for-7) moved further up the top 10 list. Sabety and Gustys have registered four of the 11 60-percent shooting seasons by a Hofstra player in the DD ear. 

HUNTER SABETY 2017-18 (51/71, 71.8%)
HUNTER SABETY 2016-17 (49/71, 69%)
Moussa Kone 2014-15 (97/144, 67.4%)
Lars Grubler 2002-03 (36/54, 66.7%)
ROKAS GUSTYS 2015-16 (192/291, 66%)
Roberto Gittens 2000-01 (123/187, 65.8%)
ROKAS GUSTYS 2017-18 (136/215, 63.3%)
Adrian Uter 2004-05 (77/122, 63.1%)
Moussa Kone 2011-12 (43/70, 61.4%)
Greg Springfield 2000-01 (70/115, 60.9%)
Wendell Gibson 2003-04 (102/168, 60.7%)

Sophomore guard Eli Pemberton continued to keep some pretty good company last Saturday, when he scored 15 points against Towson. Pemberton has 472 points in 26 games this season and 869 points through 60 games in two seasons, a pace that compares favorably with the first 60 games played by the four most recent members of Hofstra’s 2,000-point club: Charles Jenkins, Antoine Agudio, Loren Stokes and Speedy Claxton. Here are their point totals through their 60th game with the Flying Dutchmen:

Charles Jenkins 1,038 
Antoine Agudio 960
Speedy Claxton 940
Loren Stokes 927

With his 11 points last Saturday, Jalen Ray moved into 10th place on the Hofstra freshman scoring list in the CAA era. Ray, who moved past Nathaniel Lester, enters tonight 29 points away from moving past Carlos Rivera into ninth place. Stafford Trueheart, who scored two points last Saturday, one game after he became the 21st Hofstra freshman in the CAA era to score at least 100 points. Trueheart enters tonight five points shy of surging past Woody Souffrant into 19th place.

This marks the first time since the 2009-10 season, when Chaz Williams and Halil Kanacevic each scored more than 100 points, that multiple Hofstra freshman have broken the 100-point mark. Let’s hope the similarities stop there, shall we?

1.) Antoine Agudio, 452 (2004-05)
2.) Charles Jenkins, 436 (2007-08)
3.) Kenny Adeleke, 433 (2001-02)
4.) Eli Pemberton, 397 (2016-17)
5.) Loren Stokes, 374 (2003-04)
6.) Chaz Williams, 325 (2009-10)
7.) Jamall Robinson, 312 (2013-14)
8.) Halil Kanacevic, 294 (2009-10)
9.) Carlos Rivera, 226 (2003-04)
10.) JALEN RAY, 198 (2017-18)
11.) Nathaniel Lester, 189 (2007-08)
12.) Shemiye McLendon, 178 (2010-11)
13.) Wendell Gibson, 153 (2001-02)
14.) Jordan Allen, 152 (2012-13)
15.) Chris Jenkins, 151 (2013-14)
16.) Rokas Gustys, 140 (2014-15)
17.) Mike Radziejewski, 138 (2001-02)
18.) Aurimas Kieza, 126 (2002-03)
19.) Woody Souffrant, 110 (2001-02)
20.) STAFFORD TRUEHEART, 106 (2017-18)
21.) Moussa Kone, 100 (2011-12)

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