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Donets: Basketball slaughters Miners
Basketball Cranks it up a Notch in final Exhibition Game
Sam Donets Sports Director at WIDB.net
CARBONDALE-The Salukis Men’s Basketball team was the only winner this week at SIU asides from Hanger 9’s Adult Swim Carnival. But with the preseason now over, SIU has something positive to look forward to with the upcoming basketball season.
After watching the Dawgs crush division 2’s Missouri S&T 97-65. I wasn’t too sold on the play coming from everyone after a very sloppy start in the first half with the amount of missed shots to start the game, but after awhile it all came together.
In last weekend’s preseason game verse Illinois-Springfield I should admit that I was a bit blindsided with excitement with the return to college basketball to our campus and that I was amazed to see a dominant performance off the bat. Saturday came and I was excited to see how the team would do in a second go around with the 9 man swing that propelled us to a 20 point win.
Coach Lowery used the same rotation as he did the game before using Freshmen Dantiel Daniels at Center, with Justin Bocot, Mamadou Seck, Jeff Early and T.J. Lindsey as starters.
At the start of the game the Salukis already looked to have problems as it took them 2 and a half minutes to score its first points, coming from Daniels on an offensive board under the post. After the first two points SIU got its head in the game and went on a 10-0 run until S&T’s senior Filmore Bouldes hit a three.
After S&T got its first basket, it was up hill for them as they managed to fight its way back 18-14 with an 11-3 run half way through the first half. SIU pulled away and finished the half strong scoring 48 points with Justin Bocot leading the way with 17 points and Dantiel Daniels with 14.
Defensively in the first half SIU was fundamentally sound. Daniels had 2 blocked shots, Mamadou Seck and Justin Bocot each had two steals and Kourtney Goff had one for himself.
They were able to contain the entire S&T roster but one player, local boy Tommy Pelczynski. Polcznsky had 30 total points in the game, 13 in the first half, 17 second half.
In the second half we didn’t see much of the starters, which was expected after the Salukis made its way to the 30 point lead at the 12:45 mark.
Shot creation was great for the Salukis as they took 74 shots making 34 of them. Jeff Early had 15 FG attempts only making 5. For the most part that’s not bad, as it looks like Lowery’s new offensive attack calls for more shots instead of setting them up before turning the ball over.
After the starters were benched in the second half it was nice to see the healthy freshmen get some playing time with Treg Setty, Harry Whitt, and Josh Swan. Daniels came out early, and Freshmen Tony Bryer was in street clothes due to an abdominal injury suffered in practice two weeks ago.
The new comers looked good for the most part, but there were some sloppy plays under the post that will need some attention. As the season goes on the learning process should mold them into a very good team for 2012/2013.
Justin Bocot: Continued to set the pace as he led the Salukis with 17 points in 24 minutes of play. This is finally going to be the year we see Justin lead the way offensively without the likes of Carlton Fay by his side. He is running on all cylinders and it showed in the first half against S&T. Asides from his point total he is becoming the well rounded with 2 assists and 3 steals. If this continues an all conference selection could be in the cards.
Mamadou Seck: Seck improved his offensive attack a bit but distributed the ball to his teammates with ease as he finished the night with 10 points, 2 steals and 3 assists. His ball handling has gotten better only turned the ball over once when on the court. He has been quite for the most part during the preseason but I expect him to turn it up a notch or two once the Hawaii tournament rolls around.
Jeff Early: Jeff continued to be a force. I’m glad he is here and it sounds like he is too. He fits the mold defensively for watchable high energy basketball that used to be played at the SIU Arena. Though he didn’t record a steal, or blocks he put a lot of pressure on S&T guards to turn the ball over. Offensively he needs to work on his three point shooting a little bit more going 0-4 on them. He took a lot of shots going 5-15 in total. I like that he is confident in his play and grabs offensive boards. One of his missed 3 point shots resulted in him grabbing the rebound and missing a dunk. Keep up the energy the Dawg Pound surely loves it. Oh did you see his second Alley Oop? I did and this time it counted.
T.J. Lindsey: Lindsey shot the ball nicely today finishing with 11 points with 3 assists and a steal. I’m not really sure what to say about him since right now he and Kourtney Goff are essentially the same player. Only difference with Lindsey is that he took more shot attempts than Goff. He puts pressure on the opposition and can create shots by getting open by the corners. What he has going for him is his ball handling skills. He didn’t turn the ball over once against S&T after doing so three times against Illinois- Springfield. He is slowly progressing into the PG we need to run an offense.
Kourtney Goff: Goff again played well defensively with 3 steals. He also picked up 3 assists and 4 rebounds 2 on both sides of the glass. He didn’t take a lot of shots when he did have the opportunity to make a score. He can find open shots without a problem and is very fast. He may have turned the ball over but that was only because of the heavy last ditch effort by S&T in the second half forcing him to make mistakes. I’m still confused about the Technical foul he picked up after making a three pointer in the first half. I’m not worried about his free throw shooting as he went to the line 4 times only making 2. His last two shots were going to be missed anyways since the Salukis didn’t want to run the score up to 100. Like I said about Lindsey, these two players are the same player overall just comes down to who wants it more to be a starter. Goff has more edge when it comes to defense, but offensively Lindsey has the edge. Will be interesting to see how these two guys are used during the regular season.
Dantiel Daniels: Wow, what can I say about this kid. He already looks like an upperclassmen on the floor. He single handedly dominated S&T’s forwards with 14 points in the first half. He contributed 2 assists and 2 blocks. After going 3-8 in free throws he came back ready to go going 4-4 at the charity stripe. His 5 offensive boards created great second chance opportunities in the first half. It was unfortunate that we didn’t get to see him play with the rest of the freshmen class during the last 7 minutes of the game.
Treg Setty: Setty looked much improved during his 20 minutes of play. Setty had a nice finish on a fast break that was almost hard to watch. He sure can handle the ball well as we saw him do some fancy ball work on a between the leg step back jumper on an embarrassed Miner guard. He is progressing and it shows that with more minutes on the floor he will be a vocal leader in the future. It’s pretty clear that he was the go to guy in high school as he showed that he liked having the ball. If he wants to see more playing time during the regular season he needs to cut down on the freshmen mistakes by fewer turnovers.
Harry Whitt: Whitt’s play last Saturday was exactly what I was expected. Whitt’s 7 points and a block will most likely be a typical night for him once the Dawgs start playing D-1 teams . He can box out and wants to get to get physical when the ball is under the post. If he keeps it up he should grow into one of the better big men SIU has seen since Tony Boyle.
Josh Swan: It took a while for him to finally get into the game but once he got on the floor he made the best of it. In 19 minutes of play, Swan knocked in 12 points and had 2 steals. However he racked up 3 personal fouls and turned the ball over twice with no assists. He is an offensive threat if he gets the ball. At the line he was 5-6 leading the Salukis. Swan could very well be the star PG the Salukis have been dreading since Bryan Mullins ended his senior year short with a stress fracture in 2009. It’s only up to him to grow as a player and learn from guys the upper classmen to polish his game. However It may be beneficial for him to redshirt and gain an extra year of eligibility because of the log jam with junior guards.
Next Saturday the Salukis will open the 2011/2012 Basketball season against D-2’s Ohio Dominican in the annual Black Out game. That game maybe the last time we see a rout in our favor until preseason next year. Hopefully the black jerseys will make a return, and they put an end to those awful grey uniforms.
Sam Donets may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org