Bucs, Camels to meet in CSS "Game of the Week"
Thursday, February 18, 2010

BUIES CREEK, N.C. (Feb. 19, 2010) -- With their hopes of a regular season title hanging in the balance, the ETSU Buccaneers hit the road Friday night for a meeting with league-leading Campbell in a regionally televised game on CSS. Tip is set for 7 p.m. inside Gore Arena.

The Bucs (14-13 overall, 10-6 A-Sun) remain one game back of the league lead in the loss column, while the Camels hope to stay on pace with fellow league leaders Belmont and Jacksonville. ETSU hopes for a repeat performance of its 72-57 win back on Jan. 27 inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center.

For more on Friday night's game, click on the game notebook link above or read the game notes below.

Buc bits

With their backs to the wall and in need of a win to stay in the hunt for an A-Sun regular season title, the ETSU Buccaneers hit the road for a matchup with league-leading Campbell Friday night on CSS ... The Bucs had a three-game win streak snapped in their last game, an 82-77 loss at home to Mercer ... Now at 10-6 in A-Sun play, the Bucs are still one game back of the league lead in the loss column and cannot afford to move further back ... Preseason All Atlantic Sun Conference pick Mike Smith (Vandalia, Mo.) has been out for much of the season and will applie for a medical redshirt to hopefully rejoin the Bucs in 2010-11 ... In Smith's absence, Tommy Hubbard (Boston), along with Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.) and Micah Williams (Manchester) have stepped up their games. In fact, Hubbard has posted double-doubles 13 times this season. ... Currently, Hubbard and Tubbs lead the team in scoring, with Hubbard averaging 14.6 points per game, and Tubbs pitching in 12.8 a contest ... Williams is the only other ETSU player averaging double figures with 11.4 a contest.


The series against Campbell

ETSU is 11-1 all-time against Campbell, having suffered its only loss in the series in the last meeting at Buies Creek, a 68-62 loss back on Feb. 23, 2009 ... In the last meeting between the two, ETSU won 72-57 inside the Dome back on Jan. 27, 2010.


Last time against Campbell

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 27, 2010) - Senior guard Jocolby Davis (Meridian, Miss.) hit a 30-foot 3-point basket with just under three minutes left in the game, sparking the ETSU offense and helping the Buccaneers surge to a 72-57 win over Campbell in Atlantic Sun Conference men's basketball action Wednesday night at the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center. ... Prior to Davis' shot, the Bucs had looked on as the first-place Camels took an 18-point second half deficit and whittled away to make it 51-47 with 3:33 left in the contest. However, Davis' shot was followed by back-to-back 3-pointers from junior guard Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.) and the Bucs never let the Camels' surge overtake them ... For the game, Tubbs led the way with a game-high 18 points, and he was joined in double figures by four other Buccaneers. Junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston) picked up his ninth double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds, while sophomore forward Isiah Brown (Miami) pitched in 12 points and eight boards, Micah Williams (Manchester) added 11 points, and Davis netted 10. ... For Campbell (12-7 overall, 7-3 A-Sun), Jonathan Rodriguez and Junard Hartley each had a team high 12 points, while Lorne Merthie added 10. ... In the first half, the Bucs used a strong man-to-man defense to force the issue and make for efficient opportunities on the offensive end. While Campbell pulled ahead 1-0 on a Rodriguez foul shot, the Bucs immediately took the lead on a layup by Davis and later built their advantage to as many as 17 at 34-17 with 2:14 left before the break. However, the Camels scored the final five points of the half to make it 34-22 at the break. ... After the intermission, ETSU built its lead to as many as 18 points at 40-22 with 17:17 left in the contest. But Campbell responded with a methodical attack that outscored the Bucs 25-11 over the next 14 minutes to make it 51-47 with 3:33 left. Then Davis responded with his heroics. ... The Bucs shot 59 percent from the floor for the game and 50 percent from 3-point range. Campbell did force 20 ETSU turnovers, but the Bucs won the battle of the boards 33-26. ETSU's defense held the Camels to just 39 percent shooting for the game and 18 percent from 3-point range.



Last time out

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 14, 2010) - Going 25-of-25 at the free throw line before eventually finishing the game with a 33-of-40 clip at the charity stripe, the Mercer Bears took advantage of the ETSU men's basketball team's fouling woes on Sunday afternoon, dropping the Buccaneers 82-77 in Atlantic Sun Conference action at the ETSU/MSHA Athletic Center ... With the loss, the Bucs (14-13 overall, 10-6 A-Sun) drop one game back in the race for a conference title with four games left on the schedule. Meanwhile, Mercer improves to 13-13 overall, 9-7 in league play. ... Trailing 72-68 with just under three minutes left in the game, the Bucs missed out on their chance to pull closer by going 1-of-4 at the foul line. From there, Mercer responded by going 8-of-13 at the line to keep the Bucs from rallying. ...        It was a game of runs in the first half, as the Bucs went on a 7-0 stretch to make it 17-12 in favor of ETSU with 11:34 left in the half. However, from there ETSU did not score for six minutes of game time and Mercer took that opportunity to go on a 15-0 run and led 27-17 with 6:09 left before the intermission. The Bucs finally responded and outscored the Bears 17-10 the rest of the way to make it 37-34 at the break. ... In the second half, the Bears led by as many as 12 points at 56-44 at the 13:42 mark. The Bucs slowly battled back to make it a two-point game at 65-63 on a 3-pointer by junior guard Justin Tubbs (Trussville, Ala.), but that was as close as ETSU could get the rest of the way. ... Along with their 82.5 percent effort from the foul line, the Bears also shot a blistering 63 percent from the floor in the second half. Both teams committed their share of turnovers, with Mercer finishing with 19 and ETSU ending the game with 15. ... The Bucs were led by junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston), who posted his 13th double-double of the year with 24 points and 12 rebounds. Meanwhile, teammates Tubbs, Isiah Brown (Miami, Fla.) and Micah Williams (Manchester) finished in double figures with 13, 10 and 10 points, respectively. ... For the Bears - who played without the services of All A-Sun guard James Florence in the second half due to an ankle injury he suffered at the end of the first half - guard E.J. Kusnyer led the way with 21 points. Meanwhile, post Daniel Emerson finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds, while Florence added 12.


Brown's play coincides with ETSU move in standings

Sophomore Isiah Brown (Miami) has made major strides in his production over the last several games for the Buccaneers ... In fact, over the Bucs last seven games Brown has scored in double figures, and is actually averaging 14.3 points and 9.0 rebounds a contest over those games ... During this time, the Bucs have gone 4-3 and won three of their last four games, moving back into the race for an A-Sun title ...  Brown's play went to an even higher level against Kennesaw State, as he set personal bests for rebounds (15), assists (4) and steals (4), while posting his fourth career double-double with 14 points.


Jan. 30 not a good day for Bucs

For the second year in a row, the Buccaneers dropped a critical overtime game on Jan. 30 ... One year ago, the Bucs fell 82-72 at Jacksonville, in a game that Dolphins' guard Ben Smith hit a long range 3-pointer to tie the game in regulation and force the extra period ... The Bucs again found themsevles in an overtime game on Jan. 30, losing a nine-point lead in regulation with six minutes left and ultimately giving up a five-point lead in OT to fall to Lipscomb, 85-84.


Century mark not usual for ETSU defense

Giving up 100 points in the loss to Belmont (1/23/10) was not usual for the Buccaneers ... Before that game, the Bucs had not given up 100 or more point in over two years ... The last time it happened was on Dec. 15, 2007, when the Bucs lost to Syracuse 125-75 ... This season, the most points the ETSU defense had allowed was 85, in games at Arkansas and UAB ... For the year, the ETSU defense is giving up an average of just 67.0 points per game.


Jones steps up at the point

Coming off the bench to play the point guard position in the Bucs' last game against Lipscomb, sophomore guard Jarvis Jones (Memphis) answered in a big way with a career high 17 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer with .4 seconds left in regulation ... Jones played 23 minutes in the game and was 3-of-4 from 3-point range.


Williams bringing more offense to  the table

Junior guard Micah Williams (Manchester) has worked his way into the starting lineup thanks to more consistent play on the offensive end ... He has scored in double figures in 13 of his last 18 games, and recently matched his season high with 22 points against Stetson (2/6) ... He most recently scored 10 in the loss to Mercer (2/12) ... Currently, Williams is one of three Bucs averaging double figures scoring this year with 11.4 points per game.


Hubbard steps up game in 2009-10

Much has been written and reported about junior forward Tommy Hubbard (Boston) and his efforts to improve his offensive game, and those strides have led to some solid numbers ... Already considered one of the best defenders in the A-Sun, Hubbard posted a 32-point and 10-rebound effort in the win over Arkansas and dropped in another game-high 26 in the win over UNF ... He currently leads the Bucs with 14.6 points per game and 8.7 rebounds a contest ... while he has posted 13 double doubles on the year, his efforts began to pay off on the offensive end against Chattanooga back on Nov. 17 ... Setting career bests for points (26) and rebounds (13), Hubbard collected his first career double-double against the Mocs ... In addition, he hit his first 3-point shot in three seasons with the Bucs, and didn't stop there -- ultimately finishing with four long-range bombs on the night.


Record setting night from the arc for Bucs

Hitting on 11-of-14 shots from 3-point range against Arkansas, the Bucs put their name in a multiple of record books ... First, those numbers set a new school record for 3-point field goal percentage in a game with a 78.6 percent mark, breaking the previous record of 66.7 percent which had been done three times previously ... In addition, it was the best shooting effort in the "nation" this season for teams taking more than 10 shots in a game ... And it was the best percentage by a team in the A-Sun since Nov. 28, 1999 when UCF was 11-of-14 in a game against South Carolina state.


Home Sweet Dome

Since the 1996-97 season, the Buccaneers are an amazing 137-45 inside Memorial Center, good for a winning percentage of 77 percent ... The Bucs had won five straight at Memorial Center during the 2006-07 season before a loss to Belmont (1/2) ... The Bucs then rattled off 10 straight at home to stand at 15-1 on the Memorial Center floor that season, but fell to Belmont in the championship of the A-Sun Tourney... In 2007-08, the Bucs were 11-2 at Memorial Center ... In 2008-09, the Bucs were 11-2 at home ... This season, ETSU has actually struggled at home, going 7-5 in the Dome and 1-0 in Brooks Gym.


Sollazzo to honor Coy with number change

When ETSU's rising sophomore forward Seth Coy (Montgomery, Ind.) was tragically killed in a car accident this summer, it left the entire Buccaneer community with a deep sense of loss ... As is often the case, those that are left to mourn have looked for ways to remember the Bucs' 6-foot-11 "Gentle Giant." ... For sophomore guard Adam Sollazzo (Tampa), who was Coy's roommate, the answer was simple ... Changing his jersey number from No. 20 to Coy's No. 43, Sollazzo will play the 2009-10 season to honor his friend and have that memory with him each night.