inicio mail me! sindicaci;ón

Princeton 88 Goucher 35.

Box Score : HD Box Score

Postgame audio - Coach Sydney Johnson, Will Barrett & Ian Hummer:

Almost every year after Princeton has returned from their annual exam break to face a Division III foe, I've tried to ask the same question of the Tigers' head coach - "did you get what you wanted out of this game?"

While the result was barely in question on Sunday afternoon as Princeton flattened Goucher by 53 and the query went unspoken, I'd harken the answer for Sydney Johnson this time out leaned toward yes.

"We're not quite ready [for Ivy League play], but in terms of effort - if we can bottle up tonight we'll at least be in games. I thought we played hard," Johnson said after the Tigers won with their largest margin of victory since a 78-24 win over Western Maryland in 2002.

After the Gophers took a 4-3 lead 90 seconds in on Micah Perry's jumper, a 16-0 Princeton run put the game away by the second media time out and a 22-0 stretch spanning halftime allowed everyone in uniform ample experience on the court.

Douglas Davis hit six times behind the arc and had 22 points in 20 minutes. Davis left the game with 9:44 to go in the second half equaling the entire Goucher team’s point total.

The freshman troika of Will Barrett (a career high 13 points), Ian Hummer (10) and Brendan Connolly (five points and five assists) were able to take advantage of the undersized Gophers.

"It's been tough these past couple of weeks just playing against the same guys we've been playing against all year," said Barrett after completing his first winter exams at Princeton.

Playing a DIII foe after a two+ week layoff is a strange proposition, even more so in years where the start of conference play follows five days later. Without disrespecting the opposition, perhaps no game on the schedule is more about the Tigers and less about who they are confronting.

It is up to the coaching staff to try and work on wrinkles that Ivy rivals have not seen before while not tipping your hand in advance of league play.

Princeton was able to experiment with some new formations, schemes and combinations, get all 14 players in uniform ample playing time and avoid injury.

They got what they wanted.

The offense appears to prioritize a basic staple of Tiger teams for decades - going inside to go outside. Centers Pawel Buczak, Zach Finley, Hummer and Connolly posted up on the low block or at the free throw line to dish behind the arc for three point attempts. The Tigers' first five baskets came from deep. Marcus Schroeder's lob to a cutting Kareem Maddox before the Goucher defender could turn his head was the team's first two and made it a 17-4 game.

At times in the first half Dan Mavraides played point guard, the only player under 6'7" wearing orange and black, joined by Hummer, Connolly, Barrett and Maddox.

Davis' fourth three of the first half was set up by Hummer inside, who muscled a one-handed push out to the left wing that Davis knocked down for his 33rd trey of his sophomore year. The Tigers led 44-17 at the break.

Defensively, the Tigers tried some man-to-man, some extended zone and stretches of full court pressure, trapping the sidelines and jumping passing lanes. Goucher finished the day with five assists and 25 turnovers. In the first half that ratio was a woeful 1:17. Princeton picked up 41 of their points off Gopher miscues.

Barrett, who came into Sunday's game 1-12 from three point range, found his stroke in the second half. Hummer spotted an open Barrett for his second triple as a Tiger, bumping the lead up to 64-21. Fellow freshman Connolly set up Barrett for two more threes, the last creating a 84-35 advantage.

Without the availability of Jimmy Sherburne, who is currently sidelined with mononucleosis, the options at point guard were limited to Davis and Schroeder for most of the game. Mavraides spelled Schroeder as the primary ballhandler with 7:29 left and John Comfort replaced Mavraides for the final 4:36 of play.

Mack Darrow had two layups in the last three minutes for his first two baskets of his Princeton career.

When asked, Johnson struggled to think of something that displeased him about the game. "I really did think the energy and effort was there," Johnson answered. "I think it is ok to acknowledge that. To apply that on the road against two teams that know us extremely well is going to be a major challenge and that's the next challenge we're looking for."

Exams may be over, but Princeton's first meaningful test of the basketball season will be on Friday at Brown.


-Princeton finished 34-64 on the day (53.1%), 14-28 from three (50.0%) and 6-8 at the line (75.0%). Goucher was 14-41 (34.1%), 2-11 (18.2%) and 5-7 from these same locations.

-Interestingly, the Tigers did not make a two point jumper. 42 points came from the perimeter, six at the line and 40 on layups or hook shots. Those 88 total points were the most by a Sydney Johnson-coached team and the most since Princeton beat Ursinus 99-53 in 2003.

-The Tigers’ 20 steals were a program record. Each Princeton player in uniform recorded at least one steal.

-24 assists were the most for a Princeton team since a game against Southern Vermont six years ago. Marcus Schroeder led the team with six handouts along with four steals and no turnovers.

-The 35 points for Goucher was the lowest output in the program's two decade history. The Gophers' sports information department must have seen this struggle coming, as their game notes focused on the team's all time lows. Goucher scored 37 versus UMBC in 2007, 38 against Robert Morris in 2006 and 39 against Lawrence in the 2005-06 season.

-High man for the Gophers was Pat Bailey with six points.

-Sherburne and senior co-captain Nick Lake ("a bit banged up") were both in suits on the sidelines.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.