Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Thursday dribble: Cavaliers roll, CAA on tap

In the only action involving a state team Wednesday, Virginia continued to Wright itself after a sluggish start to ACC play. A much fuller slate is on tap on another CAA Thursday, and it should also be interesting to see if Virginia Tech can build on Sunday's impressive victory at Miami by defending its home court against rapidly improving Maryland.

Wednesday's game

No. 21 Virginia 73, N.C. State 60: Debbie Ryan is fond of saying her team gets better every day, but we're not at UVa. practices so for a while there we just had to take her word for it. Now we're getting to see for ourselves. Monica Wright had 26 points and 6 steals in UVa.'s fourth straight victory, but the most encouraging development is the emergence of a supporting cast capable of filling in the blanks around their star. Wednesday's headliners from this group were Whitny Edwards, who scored 10 points and nailed the back-to-back 3-pointers in the second half that put the Wolfpack away, and freshman Lexie Gerson, who chipped in 11 points and 3 steals in her fourth straight start. That Gerson was on the floor 36 minutes suggests that the Cavaliers' once-dysfunctional offense runs much better with her on the floor. Indeed, the Cavaliers (15-5, 4-2 ACC) shot 57.1 percent in the second half, the third time in four games they've made at least half their shots over the final 20 minutes.

Thursday's games

Hofstra (10-9, 3-4 CAA) at James Madison (15-3, 5-3 CAA), 7 p.m.
The Dukes have a habit of making these games exciting with Dawn Evans coming up with the pizazz at the end to pull out the victory. A big lead against Georgia State evaporated on Sunday, but the Dukes prevailed by six. Shante Evans did not get Freshman of the Week recognition from the CAA (some girl named Elena got it), but she is the Player of the Week after notching a double-double 18 points and 19 rebounds against UNC Wilmington. James Madison 79, Hofstra 63

Old Dominion (8-9, 6-1 CAA) at William and Mary (10-8, 3-4 CAA), 7 p.m. A win here and ODU is .500, something that seemed almost unattainable a few weeks ago. It sounds like a done deal as the Tribe has lost an astonishing 46 straight games to ODU. But the Lady Monarchs have struggled of late at Kaplan Arena. They had an easy time with the Tribe last year, but struggled in 2007 and 2008 before pulling those games out. Tribe has dropped four of its last six, but better athleticism in the past and their shooting touch from the perimeter could make this game anyone's. Old Dominion 77, William and Mary 65

Georgia State (11-7, 2-5 CAA) at George Mason (8-10, 1-6 CAA), 7 p.m.
I don't know about you, but the fact that George Mason reminds us that this is the 250th game played in the Patriot Center since it opened in 1985 is pretty juicy. Seriously, that hollow arena might be great for seeing Springsteen, but the Patriots and their few fans would be better off in a more intimate facility. Patriots need a conference win. So does Georgia State. We'll go with the home team. George Mason 59, Georgia State 52

Virginia Commonwealth (13-6, 6-1 CAA) at UNC Wilmington (1-6, 6-12 CAA)
Rams are looking to sweep this series after 67-54 win in Wilmington earlier this season. VCU is in Richmond. Seahawks are on a three-game slide. Nuff said. VCU 70, UNC Wilmington 59, 7 p.m.

Maryland (14-6, 2-4 ACC) at Virginia Tech (12-7, 2-3 ACC), 7 p.m.
This is not the Maryland team of old, but nor is it the Maryland team that lost to Towson and Mississippi State. Despite dropping four of its last six, the Terps are rounding into form behind two freshmen and a pair of sophomores (including Virginia's own Kim Rodgers) in the starting lineup. One point separated them from Duke on Monday. This is a great opportunity for the Hokies to make a statement at home against an ACC stalwart. Let's hope Tech builds on its wins versus North Carolina and Miami. Virginia Tech 80, Maryland 77

No comments:

Post a Comment