Washington and Lee Men's Basketball Game Notes (ODAC Tournament)

Game 21 - #6 W&L (8-15, 6-12) vs. #3 Bridgewater (17-7, 12-6)
February 19, 2000 - Salem Civic Center - Salem, Va. - 8:00 pm

W&L and Bridgewater have met 98 times over the years, with the Generals holding a 67-31 advantage in the all-time series. Bridgewater swept the two prior meetings this season, downing W&L 78-71 in the first meeting and 59-45 in the second.

LAST MEETING: (BC 59, W&L 45; Feb. 14, 2000; Lexington, Va.):
Bridgewater held W&L to just 16 points on 15.6 percent shooting from the floor in the second half in erasing a seven-point (29-22) halftime deficit en route to defeating Washington and Lee, 59-45, at the Warner Center. The Eagles began to second half on a 9-0 run over the first 3:45 to take a 31-29 lead and continued to extend that lead in cruising to the win. Bridgewater was led by senior forward Brad Harrington, who scored 18 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the floor. Sophomore center Kyle Williford scored 10 points, collected eight rebounds, blocked six shots, and dished out five assists, while junior forward Shane Burnette scored eight points and grabbed a career-high 12 rebounds. Washington and Lee was paced by freshman guard Toussaint Crawford, who scored 14 points. Senior center Brian Ricketts scored six points and collected a team-high eight rebounds. Bridgewater shot 56.5 percent in the second half, 43.1 percent in the game, and outrebounded the Generals, 42-32.

FIRST MEETING: (BC 78, W&L 71; Nov.. 28, 1999; Bridgewater, Va.):
Sophomore center Kyle Williford tied a career-high with 28 points and Bridgewater used a 17-4 start to the game to post a 78-71 win over Washington and Lee in the ODAC-opener for both teams. W&L came charging back from an 11-point halftime deficit to cut the Eagles' lead to just three points (71-68) with 1:30 remaining in the game, but Bridgewater hit 7-of-8 free throws in the final 1:20 to clinch the win. W&L was led by junior guard Chad Braley, who tallied 22 points, tying a career-high. Braley hit a career-high six three-pointers in nine attempts. Sophomore forward Bob Bustamante scored 14 points and junior guard Will Ballard tallied 10 points. Senior forward Brian Ricketts grabbed 15 rebounds for the second straight game. For the game, the Generals hit 12-of-24 three-point attempts and turned the ball over a season-low 13 times. Williford posted his 28 points on 14-of-19 shooting from the floor, while senior forward Brad Harrington provided additional scoring punch for the Eagles, tallying 20 points boosted by 12-of-18 free throw shooting.

If the Generals were to lose, their season would be over. If W&L wins, it would face the winner of #2 Roanoke and #7 Eastern Mennonite on Sunday at 4:00 pm.

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".

W&L sports a 158-202 (.439) all-time record in the ODAC and is 318-285 (.527) all-time against the current members of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. The following is a breakdown of the Generals vs. the members of the ODAC:

Bridgewater (67-31)
Eastern Mennonite (37-20)
Emory & Henry (49-26)
Guilford (9-14)
Hampden-Sydney (40-53)
Lynchburg (62-25)
Randolph-Macon (12-42)
Roanoke (33-61)
Virginia Wesleyan (9-17)

W&L has played 31 ODAC Tournament games over the years and is 15-16 (.484) all-time in those games, 3-0 against Bridgewater. W&L has emerged as the ODAC Champion three times, with the last occurring on Feb. 23, 1980 at Hampden-Sydney (58-56). Only Hampden-Sydney and Roanoke have claimed more ODAC Tournament Championships than the Generals. The last meeting between the Eagles and the Generals in the ODAC Tournament occurred in the first round of the tournament on Feb. 22, 1979. W&L prevailed in that contest, 81-75. The following is a breakdown of the Generals vs. the members of the ODAC in the tournament:

Bridgewater (3-0)
Eastern Mennonite (3-0)
Emory & Henry (1-0)
Guilford (0-0)
Hampden-Sydney (3-4)
Lynchburg (3-3)
Maryville (1-2)
Randolph-Macon (0-2)
Roanoke (1-4)
Virginia Wesleyan (0-1)

The Washington and Lee men's basketball team earned the sixth seed in the ODAC Tournament with a huge 74-56 victory at Guilford College on Wednesday evening. The win was the first for the Generals on the road this season. W&L went on a 9-0 run early in the first half on three consecutive three-pointers by freshman forward Ryan Small to take an 18-9 lead over the Quakers. The Generals took the lead into halftime, holding a 33-26 advantage. Despite shooting only 38.9 percent in the second stanza, W&L never trailed, cruising to the 74-56 win. The Generals shot a torrid 65.0 percent from the floor in the first half, including 5-of-8 from behind the three-point arc. For the game, W&L hit 10-of-16 treys, including a combined 7-of-11 from Small and junior guard Chad Braley. Small led the Generals with a career-high 18 points, while Braley and senior point guard Walt Plyler each hit for 14 markers. Plyler's total was a career-high and included 7-of-8 shooting from the charity stripe which proved crucial in maintaining the Generals' second-half advantage. Senior center Brian Ricketts led the Generals on the boards with a game-high eight rebounds. Leading the Quakers in scoring was Todd Ashworth with 11 points. Brad Woolley and John Carter each chipped in with 10 points. Guilford shot just 36.1 percent from the floor, and hit just 2-of-16 three-point attempts in the contest.

Eighth-seeded Washington and Lee saw its men's basketball season come to an end as it fell to top-seeded Hampden-Sydney, 89-72, in the quarterfinals of the ODAC Tournament at the Salem Civic Center. The Tigers never trailed during the game and jumped out to 15-point lead (35-20) with 2:44 left in the first half. The Generals cut the lead to 13 points (39-26) at halftime. Hampden-Sydney started quickly in the second half and built the lead to 22 points (55-33) with 14:44 left in the game. The Generals slowly fought back and cut the lead to as little as 10 points (78-68) with 1:37 remaining in the game. H-SC outscored W&L 11-4 the remainder of the game to pull away to the 17-point victory. The Generals placed four players in double-figure scoring. They were led by guard Will Ballard, who led the way with 18 points. Forward Bob Bustamante scored 15 points on 3-of-5 three-point shooting. Guard Kevin Cobbin scored 12 points in his final game in a General uniform, while guard Matt Jackson scored 10 points off the bench. The Tigers were led by center Jeremy Harris, who recorded a double-double with 22 points and 10 rebounds.

Washington and Lee erased an 11-point halftime deficit (44-33) en route to defeating Bridgewater, 81-75, in the ODAC Tournament in Bridgewater, Va. The Generals recovered from 35 percent shooting in the opening half to hit 59 percent of their shots in the second stanza. Tom Jeffries paced four W&L players in double figures with 18 points. Dave Leunig scored 17 points, while Carby Hoy and Pete Farrell each tallied 12 points. Rob Smitherman scored eight points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Bridgewater was led by Billy Pope's 19-point performance. The win improved W&L's record to 17-9 and advanced it to the next round, where it lost to Lynchburg, 85-84.

W&L and Bridgewater have met three times in the ODAC Tournament with the Generals prevailing in each of those three contests. W&L's average margin of victory in those games is 15.7 points with the largest margin of victory being a 108-80 win on Feb. 24, 1978 in the opening round.

Bridgewater is 17-7 overall and earned the tournament's number three seed by posting a 12-6 record in ODAC play. Bridgewater's last outing came on Monday evening as it defeated W&L, 59-45. Senior forward Brad Harrington led the Eagles with 18 points on 8-of-13 shooting from the floor. Sophomore center Kyle Williford scored 10 points, collected eight rebounds, blocked six shots, and dished out five assists, while junior forward Shane Burnette scored eight points and grabbed a career-high 12 rebounds. Bridgewater shot 56.5 percent in the second half, 43.1 percent in the game, and outrebounded the Generals, 42-32. On the season, Harrington leads the team with a 16.3 points per game average. He shoots nearly 42 percent from the floor, just over 38 percent from three-point land, and just over 74 percent from the foul line. Williford scores at a clip of 15.9 points per game, while collecting a team-high 7.8 rebounds per game. He also leads the ODAC in blocked shots (2.5 bpg.). Junior guard Jermaine Reed averages 10.0 points per game and is the Eagles' top playmaker since junior point guard Justin Bourne suffered a season-ending knee injury. He averages 2.1 assists per game.

W&L has played in five overtime games this season, a new school record. In addition, W&L has played in a total of eight overtime periods after having defeated Lynchburg in four overtimes earlier this season, also a school record. W&L has also played in back-to-back overtime games twice this season, marking the first time that has happened to the Generals since the 1979-80 season.

W&L's record in overtime games this season is 2-3. The Generals began the season 2-0 in overtimes, but have dropped each of their last three, all in conference contests. W&L is 2-1 in overtime games at home, 0-2 on the road. W&L's overtime win over Greensboro snapped a streak of seven consecutive overtime losses dating back to the 1994-95 season.

Senior forward Scott Hudson, senior guard Walt Plyler, and junior guard Will Ballard are climbing the W&L career charts this season. Hudson is third in W&L history with 115 career blocks and Plyler is third all-time at W&L in career assists (312). Ballard can jump into fifth place all-time in steals with 16 more thefts. He currently has 113 for his career.

Judy Garland knew what she was talking about. The Generals enjoyed the comforts of home, posting a 7-4 record in the Warner Center. On the flip side, W&L is 1-11 on the road this season and 2-22 on the road the last two seasons.

The Generals have featured a balanced attack this season as eight players are averaging 6.0 points or more per game. Eight different players have led the team in scoring. However, W&L has no players averaging in double figures. In research dating back until the 1948-49 season, W&L has never had a season in which no player averaged in double figures. The Generals' high scorer this season is junior guard Will Ballard, who is averaging 9.1 points per game.

Al McGuire once said that the best thing about freshman is that they become sophomores. In some cases that's true, but not when speaking of the W&L freshman class. The Generals' seven freshmen have combined to average 22.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 3.0 steals per game. Together, they have combined to score 35.0 percent of W&L's points this season.

Speaking of the freshman class, one member has stepped forward to give the Generals a major contribution over the last four games. Freshman forward Ryan Small averages 6.3 points and 2.4 rebounds on the season, but has increased his numbers to 12.3 points and 3.5 rebounds per game over the team's last four games. In addition, Small has shot 47.2 percent (17-36) from the floor and 50 percent (10-20) from three-point range during that stretch. Small tallied a career-high 18 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field (4-of-6 from beyond the arc) in his last outing at Guilford on Wednesday. He also tallied 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting (3-of-4 from beyond the arc) at Lynchburg last Wednesday.

Freshman guard Toussaint Crawford, and freshman forward Scott Hetterman, have also provided the Generals with a lift this season. Crawford averages 7.8 points and 1.8 rebounds per game, while Hetterman averages 6.7 points and 3.8 rebounds per game. Hetterman tallied eight points and seven rebounds at Guilford and compiled a career-high 16 points, seven rebounds, and three assists at Shenandoah earlier this season. Crawford has led the team in scoring in six games and posted a high of 27 points in the Generals' four-overtime win over Lynchburg.

Senior center Brian Ricketts has been cleaning the glass all season long, averaging 8.7 rebounds per game. That total is second only to Virginia Wesleyan's Ron Yuhsz, who averages 8.8 rebounds per game. Should he continue at this pace through the tournament, he would claim the highest single-season rebounding average at W&L since Brian Hanson's 8.8 average during the 1980-81 season. Ricketts claimed 21 rebounds in the Generals four-overtime win over Lynchburg. That total is tied for the second-highest in Division III this season. He also has had two games in which he claimed 15 rebounds, at Middlebury and at Bridgewater.

Much of W&L's successes this season have involved the three-point shot, whether it be taking the shots, or defending them. The Generals have held their opponents to a ODAC-best 25.9 percent shooting from three-point land, while shooting 31 percent themselves. Although W&L's 31 percent shooting from beyond 19 feet, 9 inches isn't particularly eye-catching, the Generals have produced two of the best three-point shooting displays in Division III this season. W&L's 10-of-15 performance against Villa Julie is currently the sixth-best three-point shooting performance in D III. The Generals also went 10-of-16 from beyond the arc on Wednesday at Guilford.

The following is a break-down of the Generals' two games with Bridgewater this season. W&L has shot 31.7 percent (38-120) from the floor and 33.3 percent from three-point range (16-48), while the Eagles have shot 48.2 percent (52-108) from the floor and 26.9 percent (7-26) from three-point range. Bridgewater holds a sizeable advantage on the boards (82-68), but has shot just 54.2 percent (26-48) from the free throw line. W&L has shot 75 percent (24-32) from the line and has committed an average of just 12.5 turnovers per game. The Eagles are turning the ball over to the tune of 13.5 per game.

Sometimes they're right and some times they're wrong. W&L was picked to finish 10th of 10 teams in the ODAC preseason coaches poll. However, the Generals raised a few eyes this season by finishing as the sixth place team. In addition, the Generals dropped three ODAC contests in overtime. Had they been able to pull out those three games, the Generals could have finished with a 9-9 record in league play and would have had a possibility of finishing as the number five seed.

The Generals have suffered from injuries as the season wears down. Sophomore forward Bob Bustamante suffered a broken right ankle at Shenandoah on Feb. 2 and will not return this season. Bustamante scored 14 points and claimed five rebounds in his only game against Bridgewater on Nov. 28. Senior center Scott Hudson did not play at Guilford Wednesday because of the flu and possible strep throat. He is expected to see action against the Eagles.


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