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Home Stand

George Mason Basketball: Home Stand

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

Home Stand

Mason beat the Monarchs Saturday afternoon to remain unbeaten in CAA play and continued one of the school best starts in school history. Darryl Monore had his third straight double-double (14 and 14) to lead the Patriots who collectively shot 50% for the game. Mason capitalized early off the Monarchs flat start and went up by as much as 12 in the early minutes with the freshmen lineup providing the spark. Dre Smith's early three-point air-ball may have made some Mason fans feeling uneasy but he finished with 10 points and played some exceptional defense. Long, Smith, and Vaughan all hit big three-pointers in the 2nd half when the Patriots needed them after the Monarchs started to crawl back into the game. Some questionable fouls and late turnovers down the stretch didn't help Mason but they did not give ODU any easy shots which helped seal the deal. Gerald Lee of ODU got his fourth foul with 10 minutes to go in the 2nd which really hurt the Monarchs. Important thing to take away from this game and some of their other close wins this season is that late in the game when the opposition was mounting a comeback Mason had an answer to every score. That killer instinct is what it's going to take to win some road games in the CAA this year (the Patriots are on the road for 4 of their next 6). Turnovers were in an issue in this one but besides that everything else seem to be clicking for Mason at one point or another. The three-point shooting was on target but too often I feel like they go to it too soon and abandon the low-post even when it's working. Ryan Pearson and Louis Birdsong can find ways to score and the team not runnning plays for either of them is still a mystery to me. Too often these guys only get baskets because they are getting second opportunities with offensive rebounds. But as long as Mason 's guards keep shooting like they have been that argument is a moot point.

Next up for the Patriots is a visit to William & Mary on Wednesday for a rematch of last year's CAA conference championship.


pictures from caazone.com

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7 Comments:

Blogger Brann...it's good for you. said...

Ryan...you're exactly right on Birdsong and Pearson. Those two guys are too often ignored offensively because of the 3-pt. obsession on offense. However, you're right, too...games like today show that when the 3-pt. shot is on...it's hard to argue with it...

I hope we don't overlook W&M and Madison...but, next week's Northeastern and VCU games are HUGE...

9:24 PM  
Blogger C Hirsch said...

We have to develop a post presence other than Monroe. Watching them today it was painfully obvious that we rely on the 3 point shot way too much. We are not going to be hot from 3 every game and if we go cold in the important games in March we are going to be screwed.

That being said I am very happy with 12-3.

10:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Honestly guys, the numbers simply don't back you up.

In the 12 team CAA, Mason is 9th in 3 point attempts, despite standing at 5th in 3 point percentage.

In other words, Mason shoots relative few threes, and makes a relatively high percentage of the few that they do take.

That's hardly relying on the three point shot.

FWIW, I was also under the impression that we shoot a ton of threes, but it just seems that way because the low post players we have are VERY efficient, and shoot such a high percentage.

It may be, however, that they shoot such a high percentage because they only take really good shots, so getting them more touches may not actually add up to more shots, or as good of shots, or more points.

1:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good win. I can't believe how well we are playing. No Will Thomas or Folarin Campbell or any big stars and they still get the job done.

1:46 AM  
Blogger Vallance said...

i have an answer to this 3point or low post question i think at the beginnning of the game we should definitely try and hit the low post. that is how any good team starts a game. this thing where vaughn and dre just start out our first possessions firing up a three is really amateurish. i hope they decided to put the team ahead of satisfying their need to put up a three. i mean those two really love to shoot threes you can see it in them dre and vaughn whenever they make a shot they are over the moon.

4:43 AM  
Anonymous PiMpJoOsE said...

RE: Post presence aside from Monroe

Our "problem" with post play is the horrible entry passes made to our studs in the paint (see the turnover comments). If our guards can make *simple* *timely* ***bounce*** passes into Birdsong or Pearson in the lane and keep Darryl lurking under the basket, we can score on every possession.

If teams are goine to run a zone defense on us, I'd also like to see Cam at the high post in the soft spot of that zone and collect assists.

10:47 AM  
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