Monday, August 15, 2011

Europe 2011 -- Villanova Closes Euro Jam With Loss

Villanova 54 87 Georgia
The Wildcats dropped their second game in the 2011 Euro Jam yesterday with their 33 point loss to the Georgia Senior National Team. Following the action on NovaAthletics-provided Twitter capsules, it seemed the 'Cats were in trouble early this time, unlike their first two Euro Jam games. Down by seven at the end of the first quarter, the Villanova squad souldered on without Isaiah Armwood, benched quikcly in the first quarter with two fouls, held that scoring gap to 7-to-8 points, when foul trouble benched starting point guard Maalik Wayns and low post mainstay Mouphtaou Yarou. With about a minute left in the half rising junior wing Dom Cheek found himself on the floor with four freshmen. It was quite an education. Team Georgia used the advantage to stretch the gap to 16 with an 8-0 run to close out the half. The Wildcats were bothered again by a press in the back court and a 2-3 zone when they crossed the mid-court stripe. Down by 16 at the half, the Wildcats conceded another 17 in the second half to finish the game on the short end of a 33 point gap. Scoring by the quarter...


Rising junior Dominic Cheek paced the 'Cats in scoring for the second time in three games. Cheek scored 14 points on 5-13 (2-4, 3-9) shooting from the field and 2-4 from the line. Mouphtaou Yarou and Maalik Wayns chipped in nine points apiece, with the freshmen Jayvaughn Pinkston and Achraf Yacoubou following with eight and seven points respectively. shared team scoring honors with 15 points apiece. Yarou also led the 'Cats on the boards, grabbing 12 boards (3-9-12), missing a double-double by a single point. The twitter account inidcated he was very active until sidelined with his second foul about midway through the second quarter.

The possession-based stats provide a hint at where the 'Cats were uncompetitive...


Scoring may be the nagging issue for Villanova this season. The pace, 76.4, is "exhibition-high", but consistent for a professional team. Team Georgia had several professional players, of whom Zaza Pachulia, an Atlanta Hawk last season, is (to American fans...) the most recognizable. Shooting at a 29.7% eFG% rate not only accounts for the loss, but also the scoring margin (compare to Georgia's 60.0%). The Wildcats had their chances at the line (note their FTA/FGA -- 46.9%), but did not exploit, going 16-30 from the line.

Further Reading
Look for Mike Sheridan's recap at Villanova's Athletic Department official website.
Another recap at

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