TRIBE 69, UNC-WILMINGTON 40
A 20-2 second-half run and a record-setting defensive effort lifted the College of William and Mary (8-16, 3-11 CAA) to a 69-40 blowout win over the University of North Carolina-Wilmington (6-20, 3-11 CAA) Wednesday night at Kaplan Arena.
Junior forward Danny Sumner, who came off the bench to record his second double-double on year with 19 points and 10 rebounds, propelled the Tribe to its first season series sweep of the Seahawks since 1993.
Sumner’s two-handed fast-break jam with 2:50 remaining capped off his impressive 17-point second-half performance.
“After I hit the first two shots in the second half, I knew I could get any shot I wanted and I just started feeling it,” Sumner said. “I just wanted the ball because I had that feeling. I hadn’t had it in a while and I knew I would have a good night if I was able to take some good shots.”
His offensive outburst carried over to his teammates as the Tribe shot 63.3 percent in the second half, while limiting the Seahawks to just 22.7 percent shooting — the lowest shooting percentage for a Tribe opponent since the team started CAA play in the 1985-1986 season.
The College also finished the night holding the top-ranked offense in the CAA to 40 points — the fewest points the Tribe has allowed since 1984.
“Frankly, they missed some shots they can make,” Head Coach Tony Shaver said. “I thought our intensity was great for 40 minutes tonight. There was no let-up at all at any one point. We mixed our defenses up a lot and played a lot of man-to-man tonight. We were a very intensely focused basketball team.”
The Tribe’s second-half run started at the 17:31 mark when senior forward Chris Darnell grabbed a rebound and dished to sophomore forward Marcus Kitts for a layup. In over six minutes, the College extended its lead to 45-23. The Tribe shot 63.3 percent from the floor in the second half – a 30 percent improvement over its first-half shooting numbers.
Neither team scored early on in the game. Tribe freshman guard Kendrix Brown recorded the game’s first points on a free throw nearly four minutes into the game. Junior guard David Schneider hit the game’s first field goal on a three-pointer from the corner with 14:31 remaining, ending a stretch of 19 consecutive missed shots between the two teams.
The Seahawks finally scored at the 10:10 mark after starting the game 0-13 from the floor.
The Tribe stretched its lead to 18-4 before UNCW ran off eight straight points to pull within six.
Schneider, who sank 4 of 11 three-pointers, finished with 14 points. Brown and Kitts recorded eight points each.
The Tribe travels to James Madison University Saturday at 7 p.m. for its second meeting with the Dukes. JMU defeated the College 74-65 in Williamsburg Jan. 10.