Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Guest Contributor Ray Floriani: Three Games

by Ray Floriani

NEW YORK CITY - Ladies first. The day began with a women’s game as Seton Hall hosted UC Davis on campus at Walsh Gymnasium. The Hall rallied the second half for a 68-64 decision. The numbers in a high sixty possession (Hall 69 UC Davis 68) game:


UC Davis7939252625
Seton Hall8449203335

Similar to their in state Big East neighbors to the South, Rutgers, the Hall has defended well but found points not easy to come by. The defensive efficiency and eFG percentage bear out the Hall’s defense. Part of the problem with the offense is wasted opportunities. Seton Hall entered the game with an alarmingly high 27% TO rate. To borrow a line, today there’ were more turnovers than betty Crockett’. For Big East play that turnover situation will have to be rectified.

Ebonie Williams.the Hall’s consistent scoring threat, led the way with 23 points. The junior guard it 6 of 10 beyond the arc. Hall coach Phyllis Mangina also praised the inside play of junior center Kashmere Joseph who scored 2 points grabbed 3 rebounds but played some nice interior defense in logging 16 minutes.

UC Davis (now 7-4) posed a one day preparation, after the Hall’s win Saturday over St. Peters, problem with their Princeton offense. They did a good job as Davis was 5 of 21 from three and assisted only 8 of their 18 field goals while committing 17 turnovers. Seton Hall (now 8-4) now travels to NC State. “Games like this (Davis) with their Princeton style get us used to what Villanova and Marquette run. NC State is another tough test. You need to test yourself in pre-conference because the Big East is the best (women’s) conference in America.” - Seton Hall coach Phyllis Mangina

No argument on that last statement.

In the Holiday Festival consolation Davidson , after leading 23-20 at the half, asserted themselves early en route to a 61-52 win over Hofstra. The numbers in a Davidson (70) and Hofstra 72 possession game:



After being outrebounded by St. John’s in the semifinal Hofstra coach Tom Pecora emphasized rebounding and getting to the line. Both categories saw the Pride glaringly short as they exited MSG 0-2. Hofstra forced 17 turnovers but any Davidson deficiency in that area was negated by a 47-34 edge on the boards.

Jake Cohen, a 6-10 freshman led the way for Davidson with 18 points. Will Archambault, a 6-6 guard added 10 and sparked the Wildcats’ second half surge.

Chaz Williams (14 points) and Charles Jenkins (11 points) combined for 48% of the Hofstra production. Another issue for the Pride as Pecora needs frontcourt contributions on a regular basis. The guards (Williams and Jenkins) can’t be expected to carry th load every night out.

In the championship Cornell scored a come from behind 71-66 victory over St. John’s. The Big Red had 58 possessions while St. John’s finished with 59. The numbers:



The first half had the calculator working at press row as both teams shot exceptionally well, especially from three. The two clubs were an identical 7 of 11 (64%) from three. The big difference in the game was the final twenty minutes. St. John’s cooled off while Cornell did not. The effective field goal percentage of 70% for the Ivy League representatives was largely due to an 11 for 18 mark (57%) beyond the arc.

While Cornell was getting the looks and burying the outside shot, 7 foot senior center Jeff Foote was having a tournament MVP night. Foote scored 8 the first half but as his number was called more the final twenty minutes, he responded. Foote scored 19 points while grabbing 11 boards and simply establishing a low post threat that could give the perimeter shooters room.

Dwight Hardy came off the bench with another fine outing for St. John’s. The junior guard paced the Red Storm with 19 points. D.J. Kennedy had another solid 15 point 7 rebound performance for the Red Storm.

Cornell did a great job both days of moving the ball quickly and finding the open man. For the Festival they assisted 39 of their 57 field goals made, that is 68% FGM were assisted and exhibit A of great passing and unselfishness. In the final Jon Jaques , Cornell’s 6-7 senior forward, led all scorers with 20 points (5 of 6 beyond the arc). Foote’s numbers were efficiently superlative.


An efficiency/min (efficiency divided by minutes) of over 1.00 is beyond outstanding. It is rare. Call it ‘off the charts’. A classic performance. For Foote and his Cornell Teammates. Big Red is now 9-2 with the only losses coming to Seton Hall and Syracuse of the Big East. St. John’s drops to 9-2 and hosts Bryant before beginning conference play.

"That is an NCAA team. They (Cornell) are deeper, bigger and better shooters than last year." - St.John’s coach Norm Roberts

"For us to come down here and beat a program like St. John’s at Madison Square Garden in front of a lot of (Cornell) alumns, this is just awesome." - Cornell coach Steve Donahue

No comments: