Saturday, December 15, 2007

Hartford Post Game: Spurtability?

The Wildcats played what has been charitably described as "an uninspired" first half, taking a 44-41 lead into the lockeroom. Even 10 minutes into the second half the 'Cats were still "playing with their food". And then Bam! it was all over. Both Let's Go Nova and I Bleed Blue and White provide good narratives and descriptions of the game and players, so I will just look over the box score and point out one or two things. The numbers by half:

Pace37.639.2 76.8
 Offense Defense
1st2ndGame 1st2ndGame

The first to second half transition was, unlike the Temple game, very clear statistically. Nova's defensive eFG dropped from 55.2 to 38.9, reflected in the Hawks 10-28 field goal shooting (1-10 from the 3 point line). The 'Cats forced turnovers at a much higher rate after the break -- the Hawks lost nearly 1 in 3 possessions. And the Hawks gathered a lower percentage of their missed FGAs, again a sign that the Villanova players were working harder on defense. The designated catalyst for this game was junior Dwayne Anderson who played for 11 minutes, the critical 9 minutes in the second half (of the second half...). Anderson scored 8 points on 4-4 shooting, set up Scottie and Dante with assists, had 2 steals and 3 rebounds (1-2) in the space of those 9 minutes. In the last 21 possessions of the ball game the 'Cats scored 36 points for an ORtg of 157.1 (excellent) over that period, but most importantly, they held the Hawks to 11 points (DRtg of 52.4 -- even more impressive) over their last 21 possessions. For that spurt the team recorded a 47.6 Assist Rate and a 19.0 Stl%. All very impressive numbers. Now if they can do that for a game...

Odds and Ends...
Dante Cunningham scored his 2nd double-double of the season as he put up 13 points (6-8, 0-0, 1-1) and 13 rebounds (7-6). His PPWS (points per weighted shot -- see side bar for an explanation) for the game was an excellent 1.53, raising his PPWS for the season to 1.10.
Casiem Drummond was DNP, tendonitis in his ankle. He should be back for the Columbia or La Salle game.
Five Wildcats scored in double digits, 9 in all scored at least 3 points. Nine Wildcats also recorded assists (they are getting it...) in probably the best indication that the Take 'em Offense is giving way to set plays and offensive schemes. The pace however, at 76+ suggests these guys are not slowing down.

No comments: