Monday, November 24, 2014

JMU vs. Maryland highlights big week of hoops

A rundown of this week's games involving programs from across the state:

Monday, November 24

UNC Greensboro at Longwood, 7 p.m.
   - The injury bug, which hit Longwood hard last season, took another bite last week when Lancers star guard Daeisha Brown went down with an apparent knee injury. The exciting Brown was off to a sizzling start, averaging 23 ppg in her first two games. As to the extent of her injury, Longwood head coach Bill Reinson said via e-mail that Brown will definitely not play tonight and her status going forward will be determined within the next day or so. An extremely tough break first and foremost for Brown, who again appeared poised for her best season yet. And it's obviously a huge setback for the Lancers, who have other talented players but no one else quite like Brown.

Tuesday, November 25

Old Dominion at Virginia Tech, 7 p.m.
   - Strange rivalry in that the road team has won this matchup by double figures all three times Karen Barefoot's Lady Monarchs have faced Dennis Wolff's Hokies. ODU has tended to play to the level of its competition - which was a good thing Thursday against Duke - while the Hokies appear to be gradually coming together around impact freshmen Regan Magarity (15.3 ppg, 10.8 rpg) and Rachel Camp (a career-high 22 points Sunday against at Providence). Tech also recently gained the services of Seton Hall transfer forward Sidney Cook, who late last week was granted a waiver and instant eligibility by the NCAA. In her Tech debut Sunday at Providence, Cook had 9 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals in 21 minutes.  

George Mason at Navy, 7 p.m.
   - Through four games, guard Taylor Brown leads the Atlantic 10 in scoring (23.3 ppg). The Patriots have scored at least 70 points in every contest and topped out at 110 last week in a 19-point decision over Delaware State.

Washington State at Hampton, 7 p.m.
   - Finally a home date for the re-tooling Lady Pirates (0-3) after a rugged opening stretch - at Northwestern, at preseason co-MAAC favorite Quinnipiac, at Kansas State, teams with a combined 8-1 record so far. Then again, these Pac-12 Cougars (3-1) aren't exactly pushovers, either, and games against new AP No. 1 South Carolina, at JMU and at DePaul await on Hampton's absolutely killer non-conference schedule.

Liberty at Elon, 7 p.m.
   - The loaded Lady Flames' first road test comes after back-to-back victories over Atlantic 10 foes (VCU, St. Joseph's). But the Phoenix (3-0) is coming off a 13-point victory over the same Charlotte team that nipped Liberty by two in the teams' season opener.

Wednesday, November 26

Radford at Pittsburgh, 2p.m.
   - Tough road test for the young Highlanders (1-2) who will need to put a complete 40 minutes together to pester the ACC's Panthers.

VCU at William and Mary, 7 p.m.
   - Not sure how the Tribe let Sunday's game against High Point get away, but for the most part we've loved what we've seen from this much-improved group. As for VCU, we haven't quite gotten a read on these Rams under new coach Beth O'Boyle so we'll be keeping a close eye on this one.

Thursday, November 27

Richmond vs. Central Michigan in South Point Shootout (Las Vegas), 8 p.m.
   - The Spiders, who are receiving a couple of AP Top 25, will deserve quite a few more if they can prevail against these Chippewas, who are coming off a three-point loss at Top-10 Kentucky and feature a player who for our money - granted, it's not much - is one of the 10 best players in the country in Crystal Bradford. Go get 'em, Spiders.

Friday, November 28

   JMU vs. No. 10 Maryland in San Juan Shootout, 2:30 p.m.
   - A matchup with a national powerhouse on a neutral court early in the season when you've got veterans and they're still sorting things out.? Now we're not saying JMU should beat Maryland. But these are prime conditions for an upset - if the Dukes play their fannies off. By the way, big ups to JMU guard Precious Hall, who was named Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Week after her career-high 34-point eruption Sunday at Pitt's expense. 

Liberty vs. Penn State in Georgia State Thanksgiving Tournament, 2 p.m.
   - Same song, different verse as the JMU-Maryland deal. At this stage of the season the veteran Lady Flames have a much better sense of who they are than the Nittany Lions. But we're pretty sure that, after a string of quality wins the past few years, JMU will take the court honestly believing it can beat Maryland. Will the Lady Flames hit the floor truly feeling the same way against Penn State? We really hope so, because that's a big part of getting it done.

George Mason vs. Abilene Christian in UMKC Plaza Lights Classic, 4:30 p.m.
   - The first of a potential confidence-building two-game set for the Patriots, who after facing the Southland Conference's Abilene Christian will play the SWAC's Mississippi Valley State.

Virginia vs. Toledo in Florida International Tournament, 8 p.m.
   - Encouraging 4-0 start by the Cavaliers has featured Faith Randolph averaging 20.0 ppg and Sarah Imovbioh scoring at a 17.8 ppg clip (on 67.4 percent shooting) while hauling down 14.8 rebounds.

Saturday, November 29

Longwood at William and Mary, 2 p.m.
   - Last season, the Lancers rallied from a 10-point deficit in the final 10 minutes to top the Tribe 59-52 in Farmville. 

George Mason vs. Mississippi Valley State in UMKC Plaza Lights Classic, 2 p.m.
   - MVSU plays a lot of revenue-generating games against power conference teams. Not sure if the Devilettes really believe they can win those games, but we suspect they'll think they have a chance in this one. The Patriots need to be prepared for MVSU's best effort.

Norfolk State at Tennessee State in Tennessee State Tournament, 3 p.m.
   - The Spartans (0-4) are developing a nice inside-outside duo in guard Rae Corbo and freshman forward Kayla Roberts

Richmond vs. Arkansas in South Point Shootout (Las Vegas), 4 p.m.
   - The Razorbacks, who won their first four games, will be coming off Friday's game against nationally ranked Iowa.

East Tennessee State at Virginia Tech, 5 p.m.
   - A reasonably rested Hokies squad will host a ETSU team appearing in its fourth road game (covering Pennsylvania, Indiana and Virginia) in nine days.

JMU vs. Houston in San Juan Shootout, 5 p.m.
   - Win or lose against Maryland, JMU must guard against an emotional letdown against these Cougars. 

Sunday, November 30

Virginia vs. Arizona or Florida International in FIU Tournament, 11:30 a.m. or 2 p.m.
   - FIU took an 0-3 record into this tournament; Arizona was 0-2 heading into Tuesday's game against UC-Santa Barbara. 

Norfolk State vs. Nicholls State in Tennessee State Tournament, noon
   - The Spartans are going to have to deal with Nicholls State forward Emani White (23.5 ppg), who already has a 37-point game this season.

Liberty vs. Georgia State or Samford in GSU Thanksgiving Tournament, 12:30/2:30 p.m.
   - Georgia State features two players from Virginia - senior guard/forward Miranda Smith of Roanoke and junior guard Gaby Moss of Alexandria.

Rider at Old Dominion, 2 p.m.
   - The Broncs of the MAAC went 0-3 in the Preseason WNIT, falling at Seton Hall and Towson before losing a neutral-site affair vs. St. Francis (N.Y.).

Radford at Appalachian State, 2 p.m.
   - As we're sure every Highlander fan knows, Mountaineers star Maryah Sydnor grew up in Radford, Va. and was a high school star at Radford High.

No comments:

Post a Comment