February 24, 2015 at 6:37 pm #18708
Bucknell (17-12, 12-4) ranked 18oth
Lehigh (15-2, 9-7) ranked 194th
Lehigh wins 68-65 (63% chance)
Odds and Ends
Remembering the first time around
Up by 16 only to lose by 6 in a game that saw Zack Thomas come off the bench to score 19 – including a banked three-pointer!
After 16 league games, we’re 7 and 1 when scoring 62 or more points. On the other hand, we’re 2 and 6 in games we fail to break 61. Oddly enough, that one loss in which we did score “62” was to Bucknell. So, let’s get go for 63 on Wednesday.
Defend the 3
It may come down to how well we defend the 3-point shot tomorrow night. Bucknell is ranked 27th in the nation at hitting the long distance shot @ 39.2% accuracy. In PL play, they’re even stronger @ .428 and ranked second behind Colgate (our final regular season opponent) @ .429. Our 3-pt. defense, while not tops in the league, stands at a respectable average of .353. It’ll be severely tested on Wednesday by #14 Chris Hass @.401. The 6’5” junior guard and defender’s nightmare, had an off –night the first time around against us, hitting just 1 of 6, but is coming off a 20 point effort against Boston U. on Sunday. Don’t bet on another 1 for 6 six night again. Who gets the defensive assignment for Lehigh and how well he does his job will unlikely determine the outcome of tomorrow night’s game. That said, there’s always #5 John Azzinaro to watch. He hits his 3’s @.398. And, of course, who can forget our Game One giant killer, # 23 Zack Thomas. Not known to throw it up from deep (just 25 tires this year), he’s deadly accurate @ .600.
Bounce Back by TK
After reliving in his mind his awful first half performance against Lafayette, I’m betting this game against Bucknell can’t come quick enough. I fully expecting TK to come out on fire and dominate the post with another double-double performance. This time, unlike against Lafayette, it’ll lead to a win.February 24, 2015 at 11:15 pm #18714
While it’s not technically a “must win”, it feels like a make-or-break game, to me. Bucky is hot, on a 5 game win streak. And we’re… not. I think we’ll learn on Wednesday if we’re really in this race or not. Our playoffs started on Sunday, IMO, and the first round did not go well.
There’s just so much not to like about this matchup. Haas is the kind of small forward that has given us real matchup headaches, and is a great shooter. Thomas killed us last time out. I also think Fouland is capable of making TK’s life very difficult, and we’ve seen lately how much we’re relying on him for offense.
The board’s resident optimist is in a cloud of doubt. Best case, I think, is that this goes down to the wire. And recent results don’t make that case look so good either.February 25, 2015 at 5:04 pm #18717
65’s note about the magic “63” got me curious. Felt like our first half output has been a good indicator – and it turns out that it is. In PL games where we’ve scored 30+ in the first half, we’re 6-1. When we failed to score 30, we’re 3-6. Those 3 wins all came vs. Navy (twice) and Army.February 25, 2015 at 5:41 pm #18718
I think this is an intriguing matchup because this will be Bucknell’s second crack at this team and they’ll have been sure to look at the tape of the Lafayette game to see how they bottled up TK underneath. Key for Lehigh is to control pace and emotion. If it’s a full-court, frenetic pace with a lot of made baskets, that favors Lehigh. If Bucknell can slow the pace and put cement shoes on TK, they will have a golden opportunity to clinch the league tonight. Worryingly, Navy, Holy Cross and Lafayette have been successful on fitting TK with the cement shoes in 3 straight games, and Lehigh’s 1-2 in those games (and without that Chuku 3 at the end of the 1st half vs. Navy, they might have been 0-3).February 25, 2015 at 6:38 pm #18719
We held Haas down pretty well last time out. Kept him below his average, and he shot it very poorly from the field 4/12 and 1/6. You fear a big bounce back game from him. I think TK will be fine tonight.
I feel pretty good about this one. We took it to Bucknell for large chunks of the first matchup. If they don’t get ridiculously hot down the stretch, we win that game. Of course, if they are banking in 3’s that’s another story.February 25, 2015 at 9:38 pm #18720February 26, 2015 at 12:58 am #18721
Nice first half. Bucky ice cold from the floor, but I’ll take a 42-point half. Holding my breath…February 26, 2015 at 12:59 am #18722
surely they won’t blow another big leadFebruary 26, 2015 at 2:18 am #18723
Who knows?February 26, 2015 at 2:49 am #18725
well that was a dominating performance, this team can be really good when they are playing tight D, seemed really focused all game on defending their guyFebruary 26, 2015 at 3:04 am #18726
That was fun. Played an entire game. Tough D all nite. KR and MS are a highlite reel combo. Now can we do it more than once in a row?February 26, 2015 at 3:14 am #18727
The most energy at Stabler in a long time. Team & crowd. Complete domination. Won by 19, and it wasn’t that close. Didn’t get sloppy on offense until it was decided. Granted, Bucknell had a bad shooting night, but we contributed to that. The night’s signature moment that brought down the house: a monster slam on a run out by….. MILES! AP got anything he wanted going to the rim, anytime he wanted. As did KR who picked his spots carefully. TK quietly and intelligently took what he was given, but no forced shots. JG with team leading 11 rebounds. Box score accurately shows a great team effort offensively and defensively.
That said, we all know the year long inconsistency that’s the proverbial elephant here. If they play like tonight, they can be competitive in a 15-2 match up in the first round of the big dance. And they could just as easily lose the next two games and tonight would be another frustrating reminder of the potential this team has.
On to Colgate!
February 26, 2015 at 3:24 am #18729
- This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by jimk72.
Does sum up our season jim,quite well. Odds are they will ,at some point,put together a stretch of good games that exceeds oneFebruary 26, 2015 at 3:57 am #18730February 26, 2015 at 3:59 am #18731
Aint it grand. The CI hilite is even better.
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