Mass market paperback bias!
The Flying Dutchmen returned from their exam break in impressive fashion Wednesday night, when they didn’t trail for the final 38:42 of an 87-72 win over Princeton. The Dutchmen will complete their non-conference schedule this afternoon, when they host familiar foe Manhattan. Here’s a look back at the win over the Tigers and a look ahead to the Jaspers.
THE MOST RECENT GAME SUMMARIZED IN ONE PARAGRAPH
Eli Pemberton (a game-high 27 points) was 9-of-13 from the field and came within one point of matching his career-high and Desure Buie flirted with a triple-double (13 points, seven rebounds, seven assists) as the Dutchmen fended off Princeton. Five Dutchmen scored in double figures, none more surprisingly so than Stafford Trueheart, who came off the bench to score 11 points — as many as he’d scored in his first eight games of the season combined — and collect six rebounds and two blocks in 18 minutes. Jalen Ray, held scoreless in the first half, finished with 14 points while Tareq Coburn had 14 points and six rebounds.
3 STARS OF THE GAME (vs. Princeton 12/19)
3: Eli Pemberton
2: Desure Buie
1: Stafford Trueheart
Desure Buie 23
Eli Pemberton 18
Tareq Coburn 13
Jalen Ray 9
Isaac Kante 7
Stafford Trueheart 1
Omar Silverio 1
COACHSPEAK: “Proud of our guys. It’s tough to win on the road. We beat a team who’s really a good team.”
THIS IS THE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF FRIENDS’ FIRST SEASON, WHAT WOULD THIS GAME BE TITLED IF IT WAS AN EPISODE OF FRIENDS?
The One Where Joe Got One More Win Than Jay
JOE’S GOT THE WRIGHT STUFF
You’re doing something right when you surpass Jay Wright in something. The Dutchmen’s win Wednesday was the 123rd of Joe Mihalich’s tenure, breaking a tie for fifth-place on the all-time list with Wright. Mihalich, in the midst of his seventh season, reached 123 wins in 211 games (we were told there’d be no math). Wright recorded his 122 wins over 207 games. The top six now reads as follow:
1.) Butch van Breda Kolff 215 (1955-62, 1988-94)
2.) Tom Pecora 155 (2001-10)
3.) Paul Lynner 152 (1962-72)
4.) Frank Reilly 146 (1947-55)
5.) JOE MIHALICH 123 (2013-present)
6.) Jay Wright 122 (1994-2001)
WAS THIS A UNICORN SCORE?
No! Booo. If an 87-72 win sounded familiar, that’s because the Dutchmen beat UNCW by that exact score on Jan. 17. It was not a unicorn score then, either. The result Wednesday snaps a streak of three straight wins by unicorn scores for the Dutchmen, who have recorded six unicorn scores this season. They recorded 10 unicorn scores last season. The term unicorn score was coined by Mets superfan, historian and blogger Greg Prince to describe a score by which the Mets had never previously won.
THE FLYING DUTCHMEN AFTER TWELVE GAMES
With the win over Princeton, the Dutchmen improved to 8-4. This ties the 2019-20 team for the 20th-best record through 12 games. Eleven other teams began 8-4, most recently the 2015-16 squad. The 7-4 record is the most common 11-game record. Here is how some other notable Hofstra teams have fared through 10 games.
NCAA DIVISION I TOURNAMENT TEAMS
2005-06: 10-2 (most recent 10-2 start)
2018-19: 9-3 (marked sixth win in the 16-game winning streak)
NCAA DIVISION II TOURNAMENT TEAMS
1963-64: 11-1 (most recent 11-1 start)
Some other notable 12-game starts:
2017-18: 7-5 (most recent 7-5 start)
2013-14: 4-8 (most recent 4-8 start, Joe Mihalich’s first team)
2012-13: 3-9 (most recent 3-9 start)
2011-12: 5-7 (most recent 5-7 start)
2002-03: 2-10 (most recent 2-10 start)
2001-02: 5-7 (Tom Pecora’s first team)
1995-96: 6-6 (most recent 6-6 start)
1994-95: 2-10 (Jay Wright’s first team)
1993-94: 1-11 (VBK’s last team, most recent 1-11 start)
1963-63: 11-1 (most recent 11-1 start)
1959-60: 11-1 (Hofstra’s winningest team, percentage-wise; win in 12th game began season-ending 13-game winning streak)
1955-56: 12-0 (only 12-0 start)
1951-52: 11-1 (suffered first loss in 12th game)
Full records not available for the following seasons: 1936-37, 1941-42, 1942-43m 1945-46, 1954-55
This feature is inspired by Greg Prince, who measures how the current Mets compare, record-wise, to previous teams through the same point in the season.
THINKING OF SILVERIO
Save a good thought today for sophomore Omar Silverio, who missed the game after traveling home to Puerto Rico to be with his seriously ill sister.
THE NEAR TRIPLE-DOUBLE
Desure Buie came within striking distance of the second triple-double in program history Wednesday, when he collected 13 points, seven rebounds and seven assists against Princeton. Buie is just the third Hofstra since the 2010-11 season (the first season in which the CollegeBasketballReference.com Play Index has individual boxscores) to record at least 10 points, seven rebounds and seven assists in a game. Juan’ya Green did it six times — including Dec. 28, 2014, when he recorded Hofstra’s first triple-double by finishing with 15 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists against Long Island University — and Charles Jenkins did it once. Through Friday, there have been 81 instances this season in which a Division I player has finished with at least 13 points as well as seven rebounds and seven assists.
THIRD TIME THE CHARM FOR PEMBERTON
Eli Pemberton led the Dutchmen in scoring with 27 points Wednesday. It marked his third 20-point effort of the season but the first time in which the Dutchmen won the game. Pemberton scored a career-high 28 points in a 79-69 loss to San Diego on Nov. 27 and 23 points in a 79-71 loss to San Jose State in the season opener Nov. 6.
Junior Stafford Trueheart busted out in a big way Wednesday, when he scored 11 points, pulled down six rebounds and registered two blocks in 18 minutes off the bench. Trueheart missed the first four games of the season recovering from an injury and entered Wednesday with just 11 points, 15 rebounds and no blocks in 65 minutes. The 11 points were Trueheart’s most since he scored a career-high 14 points against North Carolina A&T on Nov. 14, 2018 while the six rebounds were his most since he collected a career-high 13 boards against Rosemont a year ago today. In addition, Trueheart hadn’t blocked two shots in a game since he had two blocks against Delaware last Dec. 28.
RAY OF SECOND HALF LIGHT
Jalen Ray picked up two quick fouls Wednesday and was scoreless in seven first half minutes before he scored 14 points in the second half. Ray is the first Hofstra player to score in double digits after being held scoreless in the first half since Tareq Coburn also finished with 14 points in a 104-99 overtime loss to James Madison on Feb. 23.
SO WHO HAS A DOUBLE-DIGIT SCORING STREAK NOW?
Justin Wright-Foreman, as you may or may not recall, ended his Hofstra career by scoring in double figures in each of his last 88 games. The longest such streak now belongs to Desure Buie, who has scored at least 10 points in eight straight games.
MANHATTAN AND THE MAAC
Manhattan, under ninth-year head coach Steve Masiello, is 4-4 this season following a 59-58 loss to Western Michigan on Dec. 14. The Jaspers have lost three of their last four games, but the one win was a 54-53 overtime win over MAAC rival Fordham on Dec. 7. Oh, Fordham’s not in the MAAC? Our bad.
Manhattan was picked to finish fifth in the MAAC this season. Sophomore guard Samir Stewart leads the Jaspers with 9.7 points per game while fellow sophomore guard Tykei Greene is collecting a team-high 6.8 rebounds per game and averaging 9.3 points per game. Senior forward Pauly Paulicap and sophomore forward Warren Williams were each selected to the preseason all-MAAC third team.
The Dutchmen and Jaspers have four common foes this season. SUNY-Stony Brook fell to Hofstra, 71-63, on Dec. 10, eight days after the Patriots beat Manhattan, 65-47. The Dutchmen have beaten Monmouth and Canisius, both of whom are scheduled to face the Jaspers twice in MAAC play. Manhattan earned a 69-64 win over Elon, whom Hofstra is scheduled to face twice in CAA play.
Hofstra is 23-42 all-time against Manhattan and has faced the Jaspers more than any other non-conference foe. This is the fourth straight season in which the two teams have played. The Dutchmen snapped a five-game losing streak in the series by rolling to an 80-50 win on Dec. 10, 2018. Joe Mihalich, who coached in the MAAC for Niagara for 15 years, is 20-16 all-time against Manhattan.
Hofstra is 101-118 all-time against current MAAC schools, though the Dutchmen have won six straight games against MAAC foes dating back to the start of last season. This marks the 13th time in the last 14 seasons the Dutchmen are scheduled to play at least two MAAC schools (the 2014-15 schedule had no MAAC teams).
At KenPom.com early this morning, Hofstra is ranked 137th while Manhattan is ranked 264th. KenPom.com predicts a 73-62 win for the Dutchmen. Per the wise guys in Vegas, for entertainment purposes only, the Dutchmen are 9.5-point favorites. The Dutchmen are 7-4 against the spread this season.
THINGS YOU CAN SHOUT ON TWITTER IF CALLS GO DO NOT GO HOFSTRA’S WAY
Gerrit Cole didn’t hold a sign aloft rooting for you as a kid bias! (Remember, Manhattan College is actually in the Bronx)
Pat Kirwan bias! (Per Wikipedia, which is never wrong, former Hofstra assistant football coach and Jets assistant went to Manhattan)
James Patterson bias! (The author went to Manhattan)
Jaden Daly and Christian Heimall bias! (It wouldn’t be a Manhattan game without shouting out two good friends of the blog who used to serve as the Jaspers PBP men)