THE HEAD COACH:
Jeff Lafave (Southern Connecticut St. '93) is in his first season as the interim head coach at W&L. Lafave was an assistant coach with the W&L program last season after spending three seasons as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Williams College in Williamstown, Mass. During Lafave's time at Williams, the Ephs advanced to two NCAA Division III "Final Fours" and one "Sweet 16". Prior to his time at Williams, Lafave assisted his father, Fred, at Lenox Memorial High School in Lenox, Mass. Fred was inducted into the Massachusetts Coaching Hall of Fame this fall.
W&L vs. THE IVY LEAGUE:
W&L is 1-0 all-time against the Ivy League, having defeated Columbia, 69-63, during the 1956-57 season.
W&L vs. NESCAC:
W&L is 6-4 against NESCAC teams, 1-0 against Middlebury. The following is a breakdown of the Generals vs. NESCAC teams.
Conn. College (0-0)
W&L IN SEASON-OPENERS:
W&L has had some success over the years in season-openers, having recorded a 56-34 (.622) record in 90 years of competition. The Generals have knocked off such national powers St. John's, George Washington, South Carolina, and Davidson in the first game of the season.
The Crimson open their 1999-2000 season with just two returning starters from their 13-13 squad which finished the 1998-99 season tied for fourth in the Ivy League and knocked off Boston College in the season-opener, 62-61. However, 6-7 junior forward Dan Clemente, the Ivy League Rookie of the Year two seasons ago, does return after averaging 14.7 points and 4.6 rebounds per game last season. Clemente hit a team-high 58 three-pointers a season ago. The Crimson roster also features six freshmen and three sophomores.
The Panthers finished last season with a 9-15 overall record and return their top four scorers this season. Junior forward John Barrett led Middlebury in scoring with and average of 12.5 points per game. Senior guard Craig Breen also averaged in double-figures (12.4 ppg.) last season. However, the Panthers did lose their top playmaker in point guard Mike Faucher (5.7 apg.).
CAN IT CONTINUE?:
Junior guard Will Ballard returns this season after averaging 11.3 points per game on 44 percent shooting last year. He also was third on the team in rebounding (3.8 rpg.), second in steals (36), and hit 47 percent of his three-point attempts (31-66). Ballard finished last season on a tear, averaging 15.3 points and 5.2 rebounds per game over the team's final six games.
Senior center Scott Hudson has emerged as a defensive force in the post after averaging 1.2 blocks per game last season. For his career, Hudson has posted 72 blocks and ranks third all-time at W&L in that category.
GIVIN' UP THE ROCK:
Senior guard Walt Plyler returns for his senior season after leading the team in assists in 1998-99. Plyler ranks fifth all-time at W&L with 251 career assists. He can move up to fourth all-time with nine more assists. This season will mark the first that Plyler has been tabbed the starter at the point guard position.