Tribe Travels to JMU for TV Game
Williamsburg - The William and Mary men’s basketball team will play four of its next five games on the road, beginning with a 7 p.m. tip-off at James Madison on Wednesday, Feb. 2. The game will be televised on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic and The Comcast Network Philadelphia with John Castleberry (play-by-play) and Cal Bowdler (analyst) on the call. It will mark the second meeting between the two teams with JMU overcoming a seven-point deficit in the final four minutes of the game to pull out an 84-79 win in Williamsburg on Jan. 8.
W&M dropped an 85-69 decision to George Mason on Saturday at Kaplan Arena. Junior Quinn McDowell led the Tribe with 16 points to go along with eight rebounds, while freshman Brandon Britt tallied 14 points. Senior Marcus Kitts just missed a double-double with 12 points and eight rebounds. JMU trailed Delaware by 19 points with 13:35 remaining, but shot 72 percent in the second half to pull out a 77-71 road win. Denzel Bowles led the Dukes with 26 points, while Julius Wells scored 19.
Fans can catch the action on the Tribe Radio Network with Jay Colley, Bill McDonald and Charlie Woollum on the call. The Tide 92.3 FM in Williamsburg is the flagship station of the Tribe Radio Network. The live audio feed will be available at TribeAthletics.com, while the live stats feed can be found at JMUSports.com.
• Senior forward Marcus Kitts will play in his 100th career game when the Tribe travels to James Madison. He ranks third in the CAA at 57.1 percent shooting from the field.
• Junior forward Quinn McDowell became the 33rd member of W&M’s 1,000-point club with his game-high 22 points at Northeastern. He currently ranks 29th on the career scoring list with 1,046 points.
• Freshman guard Brandon Britt ranks second among CAA rookies and 27th in the league overall at 10.4 points per game. Since moving into the starting lineup nine games ago, he is averaging 12.9 points and 2.4 assists per game.
Scouting James Madison
James Madison, who is ranked No. 22 in the Mid-Major top 25, enters the contest with the Tribe at 17-6 overall and 7-4 in CAA play. After having a nine-game winning streak interrupted by a three-game losing streak, the Dukes have won each of their last two contests downing Drexel (60-52) and Delaware (77-71). JMU trailed the Blue Hens by 19 points with 13:35 remaining before rallying for the six-point road victory. The Dukes have been nearly perfect at home this season, going 10-1 with its lone setback coming to George Mason, 75-73, on Jan. 22.
JMU ranks among the best offensive teams in the CAA. Overall, the Dukes are third in scoring at 73 points per game, while shooting the second-best field goal percentage in the league at 46.1 percent. The Dukes are third in 3-point field goal percentage (38.3 percent) and rebounding margin (+4.1). The Dukes have been even better in CAA games only, ranking second in scoring (74.6), field goal percentage (46.7), 3-point field goal percentage (39.9) and assists per game (14.7).
Denzel Bowles leads the Dukes in scoring at 18.2 points per game, which ranks second in the CAA. He also ranks third in the CAA in rebounding at nine per game, while leading the conference in field goal percentage at 59.1 percent. His 1.7 blocked shots per game ranks fourth in the league.
Three other Dukes average in double figures and rank among the CAA leaders. Julius Wells averages 11 points per game, which ranks 21st in the CAA, and hits two 3-pointers per game. Rayshawn Goins averages 10.6 points per game, which ranks 25th in the CAA, while Devon Moore is 28th in the CAA at 10.4 points per game. Goins is eighth in the CAA at 7.5 rebounds per game, and Moore is among the CAA leaders in assists per game at 4.3, which ranks fourth in the league.
James Madison leads the all-time series with the Tribe at 44-34, including a 20-12 mark in Harrisonburg, and won the meeting between to the two teams earlier this season. W&M led for much of the contest and by as many as 10 early in the second half, but the Dukes overcame a seven-point deficit in the final four minutes to pull out an 84-79 win. Last season, the Tribe won two out of the three meetings, but JMU pulled out a narrow 65-63 win over the College in Harrisonburg.
Kitts In the Post
Senior forward Marcus Kitts has been a force for the Green and Gold in the low post this season. He ranks third in the CAA in field goal percentage, connecting on 57.1 percent (88-of-154) from the floor. His field goal percentage this season ranks fourth on the Tribe’s single season list. Kitts, who is third on the team at 9.8 points per game, is also on pace to shoot a W&M career record 59 percent from the field. Over the last nine games, Kitts is averaging 10.6 points, 6.9 rebounds and 2.2 blocked shots per game. He scored in double digits in seven of the College’s last 11 games. The 6-9 senior ranks 17th in the CAA and leads the Tribe at 5.7 rebounds per game.
Tribe Draws Radford in BracketBusters
Playing in ESPNU BracketBusters for the fifth straight season, the Tribe will play host to Big South foe Radford on Saturday, Feb. 19, at 7 p.m. It will mark the third straight season in which the Tribe and Highlanders have met as the College notched wins over Radford each of the last two seasons. Last year, W&M fell at Iona in a BracketBusters game televised on ESPNU. It marks the third time the Tribe has hosted during the BracketBusters event also hosting Loyola (Chicago) in 2008 and Manhattan in 2009.
McDowell Eclipses the 1,000-Point Mark
With 13:44 remaining in the opening half at Northeastern, junior Quinn McDowell scored a scoop lay-up and in the process drew the foul. He eventually completed the conventional 3-point play. The lay-up though marked his 1,000th career point, making him the 33rd member of the Tribe’s 1,000-point club. He scored a game-high 22 points at Northeastern and currently has 1,030 points, which ranks 29th in school history. He is five points shy of 28th on the scoring list and 15 points short of 27th. McDowell became the seventh player under head coach Tony Shaver to accomplish the feat, joining Adam Hess, Corey Cofield, Laimis Kisielius, Nathan Mann, David Schneider and Danny Sumner. The seven 1,000-point scorers are the most by any Tribe head coach in school history.
McDowell Among Best from the Charity Stripe
Junior Quinn McDowell ranks as one of the top free throw shooters in Tribe history. Over his three-year career, the Mason, Ohio native is shooting 82.0 percent from the charity strip, which ranks fifth in Green and Gold annals. This season, McDowell is hitting on 86.0 percent from the free throw line, which ranks second in the CAA and is the sixth-best single-season average in school history. It is also the 50th-best percentage in the country this season. He has hit 28 of his last 30 chances from the free throw line, including a career-best 9-of-9 at Northeastern.
Britt as an Impact Scorer
Freshman guard Brandon Britt moved into the starting lineup and has become an impact scoring threat for the Green and Gold. He enjoyed a breakout performance with 25 points in the win over Drexel, marking the most points for a W&M rookie since the 2005-06 season. He has scored in double figures in each of the Tribe’s last six games, including a second 20-plus point showing with 24 against Hofstra. For the season, the Chesapeake, Va., native ranks second on the team in scoring at 10.4 points per game, which is second among CAA rookies and 27th in the league. He also leads the Tribe in assists per game at 2.0, which is fifth among league rookies. In CAA games, Britt ranks 24th in the league at 11.7 points per game. He has been even better as a starter, averaging 12.9 points and 2.4 assists per game in his 11 starts.
One of the Tribe’s goals entering each game is to limit its number of turnovers to 12 or fewer. In the early part of the 2010-11 season, W&M struggled with turnovers, but has done a much better job of taking care of the basketball over the last nine contests. The improved ball-handing and assist-to-turnover ratio coincided with the Tribe starting the freshman backcourt of Brandon Britt and Julian Boatner
In the opening 13 games of the season, the Tribe averaged 15.8 turnovers per game and had an assist-to-turnover ratio of just 0.78 (160/205). The numbers have improved substantially recently as W&M is averaging just 10.9 turnovers per game over the last eight contests with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1.19 (117/98). The Tribe has reached its turnover goal eight times this season, including six of the last nine games.