College Sports

Davidson wins 3rd straight A-10 game, trounces George Washington

Davidson’s Kellan Grady (31) drives to score two against Patrick Steeves (10) of George Washington early in firs- half A-10 men's basketball action at Belk Arena on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 in Davidson. Grady finished with a game-high 19 points as Davidson won 72-45.
Davidson’s Kellan Grady (31) drives to score two against Patrick Steeves (10) of George Washington early in firs- half A-10 men's basketball action at Belk Arena on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 in Davidson. Grady finished with a game-high 19 points as Davidson won 72-45. DavidsonPhotos.com

The Davidson Wildcats plugged themselves firmly into the Atlantic 10 race Wednesday, beating George Washington 72-45 at Belk Arena.

It was the third consecutive A-10 victory for Davidson (8-6, 3-1), which lost its league opener to last-place Richmond. The Wildcats now are tied for second place with Duquesne and Virginia Commonwealth, a game behind league-leader Rhode Island. It was also the second straight lopsided victory for the Wildcats, who beat George Mason 86-59 Sunday.

Davidson held the Colonials (8-9, 1-3) scoreless for eight minutes during one first-half stretch and led 29-17 at halftime. Struggling with Davidson’s zone defense, George Washington made just 32.7 percent of its shots, a season low for a Wildcats opponent.

The Wildcats got double-figure scoring from four players — guard Kellan Grady (19), forward Peyton Aldridge (15) and guards Jon Axel Gudmundsson (14) and KiShawn Pritchett (11).

George Washington managed to cut Davidson’s lead to a precarious eight points, 33-25, early in the second half. But the Wildcats outscored the Colonials 39-20 the rest of the way. The Wildcats, especially Gudmundsson and KiShawn Pritchett (six points), went to the basket as often as possible. The Wildcats outscored the Colonials 38-18 in the paint.

Three who mattered

Grady, Davidson: Despite picking up three fouls early in the second half, Davidson’s freshman standout hit 7-of-13 shots for 19 points.

Gudmundsson, Davidson: The Wildcats’ point guard attacked the basket with inpunity, scoring 14 points and also grabbing nine rebounds and handing out three assists.

Yuta Watanabe, George Washington: Colonials’ forward struggled with his shot, but finished with 12 points and five rebounds.

Observations

▪  George Washington entered the game leading the Atlantic 10 in blocked shots (77) and had five in the game, three coming in the first half.

▪  Davidson, which leads the nation in assist-turnover ratio and is among the leaders in 3-pointers and assists per game, led 29-17 at halftime despite not performing well in any of those categories. The Wildcats had two turnovers and two assists and made just one-of-10 3-pointers. The Wildcats finished with 13 assists and six turnovers, but were four-of-16 from 3-point range.

▪  Davidson injury update: Forward Dusan Kovacevic, who had knee surgery last week, will miss the rest of the season. Senior forward Nathan Ekwu (knee) won’t play this season and might redshirt. Pritchett is limited in practice due to continuing discomfort in his knee, an injury that forced him to miss his freshman season. Senior guard Rusty Reigel (back) also doesn’t practice much.

▪ Davidson’s next game is Sunday at Fordham. George Washington stays on the road with a game Saturday against Richmond.

Quoting

“I told the team after the game that we cannot be entitled. We’ve got to fight every night. There is no entitlement in our program.” — Davidson coach Bob McKillop.

It’s a testament to us, to show that we’re not just a 3-point shooting team.” – Davidson forward Will Magarity, on the Wildcatrs’ 38-18 edge in the paint.

“Our zone affected their rhythm, it was so disruptive. It also doesn’t wear you out like playing man-to-man does.” – McKillop.

“We’ve embraced being a team of defenders. We don’t want to let each other down.” –Aldridge.

DAVIDSON 72, GEORGE WASHINGTON 45

GEORGE WASHINGTON (8-9): Steeves 1-4 0-0 2, Zeigler 3-3 1-2 7, Nolan 3-7 1-2 10, Bolden 2-12 0-0 5, Watanabe 5-12 1-2 12, Sasser 0-0 0-0 0, Toro 1-4 0-0 2, Langarica 0-0 2-2 2, Mitola 0-1 0-0 0, J.Williams 0-2 1-2 1, Mazzulla 2-4 0-1 4, Jack 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 17-52 6-11 45.

DAVIDSON (8-7): Aldridge 6-14 2-2 15, Michelsen 1-2 0-0 2, Grady 7-13 4-5 19, Gudmundsson 6-12 1-1 14, Pritchett 5-7 0-0 11, Jones 0-1 0-0 0, Magarity 4-5 0-0 8, Watkins 0-0 0-0 0, Brown 0-0 0-0 0, Freundlich 0-0 1-2 1, Collins 1-1 0-1 2, Wynter 0-0 0-0 0, Reigel 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 30-56 8-11 72.

Halftime—Davidson 29-17. 3-Point Goals—George Washington 5-22 (Nolan 3-5, Watanabe 1-4, Bolden 1-8, Mitola 0-1, J.Williams 0-1, Mazzulla 0-1, Jack 0-2), Davidson 4-16 (Pritchett 1-1, Grady 1-3, Gudmundsson 1-4, Aldridge 1-5, Michelsen 0-1, Jones 0-1, Reigel 0-1). Fouled Out—None. Rebounds—George Washington 23 (Watanabe 5), Davidson 36 (Gudmundsson, Magarity 9). Assists—George Washington 12 (Nolan, Mitola, Bolden, Watanabe, Jack 2), Davidson 13 (Aldridge 4). Total Fouls—George Washington 15, Davidson 13. A—3,310 (5,295).

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