January 4, 2013

Bulldogs Open SoCon Home Slate on Saturday Against Western Carolina

Game Notes

The Citadel basketball team, making its first appearance at McAlister Field House since November, will open the home portion of its Southern Conference slate on Saturday evening against Western Carolina. Tip-off time is set for 7:05.

The Bulldogs (3-8, 0-1 SoCon) are looking to avenge a pair of losses suffered to the Catamounts last season, including a 68-56 defeat that ended The Citadel's season at the 2012 Southern Conference Tournament. Meanwhile, Western Carolina (4-9, 2-0 SoCon) looks to remain perfect in league play following previous wins over Furman and Appalachian State.

34 AND COUNTING: The Citadel has opened its Southern Conference home schedule with a win on 34 occasions, including a pair of recent victories over Georgia Southern (65-52; Dec. 2, 2010) and Samford (73-62; Jan. 7, 2011), since joining the league in 1936.

Among the 76 SoCon home openers in Citadel history the Bulldogs have faced Western Carolina on only three occasions. The first came on Dec. 10, 1977, when the Catamounts emerged with a 65-64 win. It would be another 19 seasons before the two squared off to open the SoCon slate at McAlister, this time with The Citadel emerging 82-62. The most recent meeting came on Dec. 21, 2004, again with the Cadets capturing the victory, 65-60.

A victory over Western Carolina would mark the longest winning streak in league home openers by The Citadel since 1993, when the Dogs began a stretch of five straight that included wins over VMI, Georgia Southern, Chattanooga, Western Carolina and Davidson in successive years.

Citadel Home SoCon Openers Since 2000-01 Season

Date Opponent Result Citadel Opp.
Jan. 3, 2001 vs UNC Greensboro W 70 68
Jan. 5, 2002 vs East Tennessee State W 74 61
Jan. 13, 2003 vs Wofford L 54 69
Dec. 1, 2003 vs Appalachian State L 62 72
Dec. 21, 2004 vs Western Carolina W 65 60
Jan. 7, 2006 vs Georgia Southern L 65 83
Dec. 4, 2006 vs Appalachian State L 52 56
Jan. 14, 2008 vs College of Charleston L 46 69
Jan. 8, 2009 vs Georgia Southern W 84 75
Dec. 3, 2009 vs Davidson L 63 74
Dec. 2, 2010 vs Georgia Southern W 65 52
Jan. 7, 2011 vs Samford W 73 62

MARSHALL LAW: Sophomore Marshall Harris III has connected on 70 percent of his free throws last season (42-60), a percentage that placed him third on the team. This season, Harris has improved by 21.2%, hitting 31-of-34 from the charity stripe which is equivalent to 91.2%. Harris ranks 14th among the nations best free throw shooters.

MORE OR LESS: In comparison to the first 11 games of last season, The Citadel has committed 36 less turnovers in 2012-13 (154) than that of the 2011-12 season, where the Dogs committed 190.

The Citadel has also experienced a fluctuation in the number of free throws made, up 27 in 2012-13 (150) from 2011-12 (123), free throws attempted which are greater in 2012-13 (208) than in 2011-12 (191) and the number of blocks which is significantly more, 29 in 2012-13 than in 2011-12 (18).

HIGHEST PLUS/MINUS PROFICIENT LINEUP: The starting lineup of Marshall Harris III, Lawrence Miller, C.J. Bray, Matt Van Scyoc and Mike Groselle, which was intact for the first six games of the season, continues to produce the best ratio of any lineup head coach Chuck Driesell has put on the floor this season, outscoring opponents by +25 when they were on the floor together.

However, prorated out to a 40-minute game, the lineup of Groselle, Moore, Janeil Jenkins, Stephen Elmore and Quinton Marshall would be the most efficient with a plus/minus of 202.82. Those five are +6 on the year in just 1:11 minutes of action.

Player Combination Minutes PF PA +/-
Marshall Harris III, Lawrence Miller, CJ Bray, Matt Van Scyoc, Mike Groselle 45:01 85 60 +25
Matt Van Scyoc, Mike Groselle, Janeil Jenkins, Dylen Setzekorn, Ashton Moore 6:47 17 4 +13
Marshall Harris III, CJ Bray, Matt Van Scyoc, Mike Groselle, Dylen Setzekorn 4:45 12 5 +7
Lawrence Miller, Ashton Moore, Stephen Elmore, Quinton Marshall, Michael Hundley 3:32 10 4 +6
Mike Groselle, Janeil Jenkins, Ashton Moore, Stephen Elmore, Quinton Marshall 1:11 8 2 +6
Marshall Harris III, Lawrence Miller, CJ Bray, Mike Groselle, Quinton Marshall 17:01 37 32 +5
Janeil Jenkins, Ashton Moore, Stephen Elmore, Quinton Marshall, Michael Hundley 2:42 5 0 +5
Marshall Harris III, Dylen Setzekorn, Ashton Moore, Stephen Elmore, Quinton Marshall 1:47 5 0 +5
Marshall Harris III, Mike Groselle, Dylen Setzekorn, Ashton Moore, Quinton Marshall 1:31 7 2 +5



LIBERTY EDGES WESTERN CAROLINA, 63-62, IN NON-CONFERENCE TILT: Rallying from a seven-point deficit, Trey Sumler handed Western Carolina a four-point lead with 10 seconds remaining in regulation with an old-fashioned three-point play. However, Liberty scored the final five points of the game including two on technical foul shots as the Flames escaped the Ramsey Center with a 63-62 victory over the Catamounts in non-conference play.

Sumler paced three Catamounts in double figures with 23 points including three 3-pointers. Tawaski King, who was saddled with foul trouble in the first half, returned to double-figure scoring with 12 points and six rebounds while James Sinclair finished with 11 and a team-best eight boards. King added a career-high tying four steals as WCU forced 24 Liberty turnovers - their season high.

Freshman Mike Brown scored eight points off the bench for WCU.

Neither team seemed in rhythm early in the first half which saw four ties and seven lead changes. After leading by two twice in the opening moments of the game, the Catamounts wrestled the lead back from Liberty as Sinclair converted a Tom Tankelewicz steal into a lay-up to put WCU ahead by three, 22-19, with 3:24 remaining in the opening stanza.

Yet, the Flames responded with 10-straight points to close the half, erasing the Catamounts' edge and carrying a seven-point, 29-22, lead into the halftime locker room.

In the second half, Liberty's lead grew to a game-high nine points on a 3-pointer by Davon Marshall at the 13:32 mark. Western Carolina methodically chipped away at the Flames advantage, twice pulling to within two points only to see Liberty open it back up to a seven-point lead. A four-point play by Sumler made it a two-point margin midway through the second half before Liberty responded with five-straight points. The second occasion came following an offensive stick-back by freshman Mike Brown at the 5:40 mark only to see Liberty score seven of the next nine points to reclaim its seven-point edge.

WCU finally managed to knot the game and to reclaim the lead on a pair of Sumler free throws that followed a defensive steal by King, 59-58. Sumler's ensuing three-point play gave the Catamounts their largest lead of the game, setting up the finish.

Liberty (4-10) matched WCU with three players in double figures led by 13 from Speaks including 7-of-8 from the free throw line. Tomasz Gielo posted a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds while Marshall also scored 10 points. Joel Vander Pol and John Caleb Sanders both finished with nine points apiece.

WCU managed to go perfect from the free throw line on Monday - 12-for-12 - but were outscored by six from the stripe as the Flames finished 18-of-22. Liberty also won the battle on the boards 39-to-28, matching the Catamounts with 12 offensive rebounds.

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