Colonials End 2011 With a Win
GW Downs Delaware State, 77-59, at Smith Center
Dec. 31, 2011
WASHINGTON, DC -In front of 2,247 raucous new year's revelers at Smith Center in Foggy Bottom, the George Washington University men's basketball team out-ran the visiting Delaware State Hornets on the way to a 77-59 victory to snap a seven-game losing skid.
Senior point guard Tony Taylor paced the Colonials with 20 points on 8-of-10 shooting from the field, including 2-for-2 from three-point range, while backcourt mate Lasan Kromah continued to stuff the stat sheet with 15 points, five rebounds and team-high five assists. Jabari Edwards established a new career-high with 11 points in the contest, to go along with a team-high nine boards, while freshman John Kopriva's 10 points gave the Colonials four double-digit scorers.
GW amassed a 22-12 cushion on the strength of a 16-3 run over a 10-minute stretch in the first half, that saw the home team pull away after early back-and-forth action. The game featured four ties and four lead changes early on, but a free throw and basket by senior Aaron Ware - who celebrates his 22nd birthday tomorrow - put the Colonials up for good at 13-11 in the opening stanza. GW closed the first half on an alley-oop from Lasan Kromah to Jabari Edwards, to hold a 37-27 lead at the break. In all, eight different players found the score book for GW in the opening 20 minutes, including Bryan Bynes who made his return to action after being sidelined with a left shoulder injury.
The offensive momentum displayed in the first 20 minutes carried over into the second half for GW, as the Colonials opened a 25-point lead by the 14:34 mark in the second half. A lob from beyond half court from Tony Taylor for a David Pellom lay-up on the other end capped a 16-0 surge, as GW's commanding 55-30 lead was too much for Delaware State to overcome.
George Washington's dominance included a 46-20 edge in the paint, and an 18-0 margin in fast break points that was largely owed to a swarming defense that forced 19 Hornets' turnovers. The Colonials scored 29 points off of Delware State miscues, showing their defensive mettle heading into A-10 action.
"We really challenged ourselves with a good non-conference schedule," said head coach Mike Lonergan, who will lead his team into conference play at Saint Bonaventure on Wednesday, before heading to Saint Louis next Saturday. The conference home opener for GW is Wednesday, January 11th against Rhode Island.
Delaware State was led in scoring on Saturday afternoon by Amere May who had a game-high 22 points and hit three of the Hornets' nine three-pointers, while Kendall Gray double-doubled with 12 points and a game-high 10 boards.