Thursday, January 22, 2015

Falcons Wins #12, Equal last year's total

And the beat goes on.  Or, the beat rolls along.

The Falcons won their sixth out of the last 7, remained in what is now a three-way tie for the top of the MAC, and continued to show that they are a greatly improved program.

The win over EMU ended up being easy. In the preview, I noted that I didn't see EMU as being as good as their record, UM win notwithstanding.  Still, BG came up with a solid win in the conference over a team that has at least one good win.  We are 100% happy with the year.

BG won 74-58.  That's good, especially to get 74 points against a team that plays very tough defense.  More on that in a minute.  Right now, I want to look at how BG takes control of games and doesn't let it go.  BG took the lead about 10 minutes into the first half and led for the remainder of the game, uninterrupted.  A late first half run popped the lead over 10 and EMU never had the lead inside 9 for the remainder of the basketball game.  That's just not something we saw in the past.

The key was scoring.  EMU plays a tough 2-3 zone, they trap and they are very hard to shoot against.  Now, we noted that some of their numbers were put up against 4 non D1 opponents, but this has been their identity during the Murphy era.  BG scored 1.16 points per possession, which is a very strong effort for any offensive team.  It is the most points per possession scored against EMU in any game this year, even the Miami game where they gave up in the 80s but on a high paced game.

BG shot 46% and 44%--and the 11 out of 25 3-shooting for BG was a big difference in the game.  It was also the best shooting by any team against EMU.  BG didn't have a great day on turnovers. but had a great day on offensive rebounding--especially against a zone--with 40% of the available rebounds. BG got 22 FTs but shot only 59%, but EMU shot worse at 58%.

BG also played very, very solid defense.  They allowed EMU .9 points per possession, holding the Eagles to 36% and 29% shooting.  They took care of the ball better than BG, had a strong day on their offensive boards...the main difference in the game boiled down to making shots.

Anthony Henderson had a big game for BG, scoring 17 points on 6 of 12 and 3 of 6 shooting.  He also added 6 rebounds.  On top of that, both Holmes and Denny double-doubled.  Holmes had 13 points on 4 of 5 shooting to go with 10 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 blocks.  Denny had 10 and 10, though he struggled with shooting.  Finally Dickerson had 12 points and 3 blocks.

Two other notes.  BG's PGs had 6 assists over 1 turnover and Spencer Parker started but had 2 fouls in the first 5 minutes and played only 11 minutes in the game.

So, BG is 12-4 and 4-1.  And next are the Rockets, who were picked to win the conference but currently sit at 2-3 in MAC play.  Starting to look really forward to that one.

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