Photo Credit – Brett Hansbauer
Dayton Flyers: 83 George Mason Patriots: 70
The George Mason Patriots have been the biggest surprise of the Atlantic 10 this year. Last year, the Patriots won a total of 11 games and only 5 in conference. They came into a rowdy University of Dayton Arena with 18 wins, 8 in conference, trying to get a statement win for this season. The Dayton Flyers were looking to get their 7th straight win to keep pace at the top of the A10. Dayton was able to get an early 11-6 lead. George Mason went on an 8-2 run to take a 14-13 lead, the only they’d have all night. The Flyers were able to keep a little bit of distance from the Patriots for the half, but GMU was always within striking distance. Dayton’s biggest lead of the half came at the 4:08 mark when senior guard Kyle Davis hit a three to put the Flyers up 33-23. UD took a 38-31 lead into the half. Early in the second half, the teams traded buckets. Dayton was able to get another 10 point lead, 48-38, with 14:54 to go in the game but George Mason answered immediately. The Patriots went on a 9-0 run in a little over 40 seconds. They hit back to back threes and then completed an old fashioned three point play to cut the deficit to 1, 48-47. This is where things got very interesting. Senior guard Scoochie Smith was taken out to get a breather. Sophomore guard John Crosby came in to give Smith a rest. Normally, when Crosby runs the point, the offense becomes very stagnant. It was the complete opposite today. Flyer senior guard Charles Cooke hit a 3 at the 13:23 mark to spark a 20-0 run over the next 6 minutes. Crosby scored 9 points during this run. Dayton led 68-47 with 7:30 to go. George Mason then called a timeout that slowed down the Flyers. The Patriots went on a 14-3 run to get within 10, 71-61, with 3:47 left. George Mason was able to get within 9 a couple times over the final 3:47 but that is the closest they would get. With the win, the Flyers assured themselves a double-bye into the quarterfinals of the A10 tournament.
By the Numbers:
- 15 – The Flyers outscored the Patriots in fast break points 15-4.
- 20 – Dayton is 20-0 when leading with five minutes to go.
- 29 – UD had 29 points off turnovers to George Mason’s 5.
- 34 – The Flyers have won 34 straight games when scoring 80 or more points.
- 40 – Dayton is 21-1 on the season when they shoot 40% or better.
- 100 – This was the senior class’ 100th win, extending their UD record for wins by a class.
George Mason shot 41% (25-61) from the field, 34.8% (8-23) from the three point line and 63.2% (12-19) from the free throw line. GMU had 44 rebounds, 13 assists, 17 turnovers, 1 block and 2 steals. Leading the way for the Patriots was sophomore guard Jaire Grayer who had 13 points and 13 rebounds in 32 minutes. Senior guard Marquise Moore had 12 points and 9 rebounds in 32 minutes. Senior forward Jalen Jenkins added 10 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists in 31 minutes. Freshman guard Karmari Newman came off the bench and added 11 points in 15 minutes.
Dayton shot 44.4% (28-63) from the field, 40% (10-25) from the three point line and 70.8% (17-24) from the charity stripe. UD had 35 rebounds, 17 assists, only 5 turnovers, 9 blocks and 8 steals. Leading the way for the Flyers was Scoochie Smith who had 16 points and 3 assists in 28 minutes. Charles Cooke added 12 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists in 32 minutes. Sophomore forward Xeyrius Williams had 12 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in 24 minutes. Senior forward Kendall Pollard had 10 points, 6 boards and 3 steals in only 22 minutes. John Crosby came off the bench and scored a career high 12 points and added 5 rebounds in only 12 minutes.
The Patriots (18-10) (8-7 A10) head to Washington, DC to take on George Washington Sunday, February 26th at 2PM.
The Flyers (22-5) (13-2 A10) will play at Davidson Friday, February 24th at 9PM. This game will be nationally televised on ESPN2.
A10 Standings as of 2/21
Alex Handorf ’17