|February 27, 2016||1st||2nd||Final|
|Stats at a Glance||WOF||ETSU|
|FG Percentage||.353 (18-51)||.511 (24-47)|
|3P FG Percentage||.333 (7-21)||.357 (5-14)|
|FT Percentage||.742 (23-31)||.720 (18-25)|
- 22||Ge'Lawn Guyn
- 8||Peter Jurkin
- 3||Desonta Bradford
- 3||Desonta Bradford
Petey McClain - 2
Deuce Bello - 2
Ge'Lawn Guyn - 2
- 1||Peter Jurkin
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 26, 2016) – Still with a chance to share or win outright the Southern Conference regular season championship, the ETSU men’s basketball team will host league rival Wofford Saturday afternoon on Senior Day at 4 p.m. inside Freedom Hall.
The Bucs, who improved to 20-10 overall, 13-4 in SoCon play with a win over Furman on Thursday night, have wrapped up second place in the league standings, but are still just one game back of league-leading Chattanooga. A win by ETSU on Saturday would put the pressure on the Mocs, who still have two games remaining on their schedule.
On Saturday, ETSU seniors Petey McClain (Mobile, Ala.), Lester Wilson (Knoxville), Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.) and Deuce Bello (Greensboro, N.C.) will be playing in their final regular season home game of the 2015-16 season and will be honored in a special pregame ceremony.
The Wofford game will air live via web streaming on ESPN3.com and the Watch ESPN App, and the Buccaneers Sports Network will also have the live radio feed on its affiliated stations. Across the region, the Bucs’ flagship radio station is AM 640 WXSM, and the game can also be heard on FM 104.9 NASH Icon. In addition, ETSUBucs.com will provide a live audio stream of the contest.
For more on the Wofford matchup, read the game notes below or click on the game notebook link to the right. For more on ETSU men’s basketball throughout the 2015-16 season, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s hoops link.
We are “ETSU”
The ETSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics would like to ask both the print and broadcast media to honor our request to be called “ETSU” ... East Tennessee State University in first reference is acceptable, but subsequent references should be ETSU ... On TV graphics please use ETSU ... Our nickname is the Buccaneers, but Bucs is also acceptable.
The Steve Forbes era begins
It seems like only yesterday that Steve Forbes was named the 16th head coach in the history of ETSU basketball back on March 30, 2015 ... But 11 months later and the Bucs are well into the Forbes’ era ... Having most recently served two seasons as an assistant coach at Wichita State where he helped take the Shockers to the Sweet 16 in 2014-15, Forbes has been heralded for his recruiting ties and his extensive background as an assistant coach at the NCAA Division I level – which included a five-year stop at the University of Tennessee ... Complete bio information on Forbes can be found at ETSUBucs.com and general coaching records and other statistics are available on Page 2 and Page 5 of this media notes package.
Last time out
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Feb. 25, 2016) – Building a 19-point halftime lead thanks to arguably its best opening 20 minutes of play this season, the ETSU men’s basketball team ultimately held off a second-half rally by Furman to take an 80-75 win over the Paladins in Southern Conference action at Freedom Hall. ... With the win, the Bucs collected their sixth 20-win season since the 2002-03 campaign, improving to 20-10 overall, 13-4 in SoCon play. In addition, ETSU clinched second place in the league standings and still have a chance at first place, sitting one game back of league-leading Chattanooga entering this weekend’s play. Meanwhile, Furman dropped into a tie for third place in the league at 17-13, 11-6. ... The Bucs got a game-high 23 points from Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.), while four other ETSU players reached double figures. ... Certainly, the first half was perhaps the best 20 minutes of basketball this season for the Bucs, as their full-court, pressing defense forced Furman into 16 turnovers and resulted in a 23-6 advantage for ETSU in points off turnovers. A 19-3 offensive run early in the half combined with a 57 percent shooting percentage from the field and a 50 percent mark from 3-point range helped ETSU build a lead of as many as 22 points at 46-24, as the Bucs ended the first half up 19 at 48-29. ... After the break, Furman did a much better job of possessing the basketball and ETSU’s offense struggled to find a rhythm, which allowed the Paladins to outscore the Bucs 28-11 over the first 12 minutes of the second half and pull to within two points at 59-57. ... ETSU clung to the lead over the next five minutes of play before Bello scored eight of his 12 points to power a 10-0 burst for the Bucs and make it 74-60 with 3:36 left in the game. Furman did not go away though, scoring 11 straight of its own to make it 74-71 in the final minute. Fortunately for the Bucs, they hit enough foul shots down the stretch to ice the game.
The series vs. Wofford
The Buccaneers hold a dominating 32-9 advantage in the all-time series against the Terriers ... The teams first met in 1958 ... However, the Terriers have won the last three meetings, which included an 87-73 win over the Bucs last month in Spartanburg, S.C.
Last time out against Wofford
SPARTANBURG, S.C. (Jan. 28, 2016) – With a defensive effort that held the ETSU men’s basketball team to a season low three 3-pointers and using a 28-7 offensive run to close out the first half, the Wofford Terriers dropped the Buccaneers 87-73 inside Benjamin Johnson Arena. ... The Bucs did play well in the early going, building a 21-16 advantage over the first 12 minutes of game play. However, at that point, the game seemed to turn after ETSU failed to grab a defensive rebound and Wofford’s Jaylen Allen was fouled after making a 3-point shot. While Allen missed the free throw, the ball was rebounded once again by Wofford’s Ryan Sawvell, who then scored to give the Terriers a five-point swing on one possession, making it 21-21. ... The Terriers used that sequence to launch what would become a 28-7 run over the final eight minutes of the half and ended with Wofford leading 44-28 at the break. ... After the intermission, the Bucs scored seven straight points and cut the lead to 12 at 47-35, but ETSU’s defensive effort was still lacking as the Terriers answered with its own offensive run and ultimately moved back ahead by as many as 21 at 70-49 with 8:15 left in regulation. ... ETSU battled back with a full-court press defense and got to within 11 at 81-70 with 1:56 left, but that would be as close as the Bucs could get to the Terriers. ... A bright spot for ETSU was the play of sophomore guard Desonta Bradford (Humboldt), who finished with a career high 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting from the floor. Meanwhile, senior guard Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.) finished with a team-high 18 points, while both seniors Lester Wilson (Knoxville) and Petey McClain (Mobile, Ala.) had 10 points apiece.
Seniors to play final regular season home game today
Seniors Petey McClain (Mobile, Ala.), Lester Wilson (Knoxville), Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.) and Deuce Bello (Greensboro, N.C.) will be playing their final regular season home game today against Wofford. ... While Guyn and Bello have made an immediate impact as graduate transfers into the program and provided great memories for ETSU’s fans, McClain and Wilson have spent a combined nine years on the ETSU campus (five for Wilson after a redshirt season in 2011-12 and four for McClain after joining the Bucs in 2012-13) ... Wilson has enjoyed his share of individual success, currently finding himself tied for second place on the all-time list for made 3-pointers with 260 and having scored 1,341 career points which is good for 12th on the all-time list ... Meanwhile, with his next assist, McClain will reach 400 for his career and will rank fifth on the all-time list behind ETSU standouts like Keith “Mister” Jennings, Tim Smith, Courtney Pigram (416) and Adam Sollazzo (409).
Bucs playing well inside Freedom Hall this season
Having posted a 12-2 record at home this year, the ETSU men’s baskteball team has shown a propensity to play well inside Freedom Hall ... A look at the team’s home statistics show the Bucs shooting 49 percent from the floor and 40 percent from 3-point range as a team, while out-rebounding opponents 524-490 and posting an impressive scoring margin of +11.3 ... Individually, several Bucs having enjoyed playing in Freedom Hall ... In particular, senior guard Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.) has shot 51 percent from the field and 49 percent from 3-point range, and is averaging 20.2 points per game at Freedom Hall ... In addition, junior guard T.J. Cromer (Albany Ga.) is shooting 48 percent from the floor, while senior forward Lester Wilson (Knoxville) has posted a 45 percent clip from 3-point range at home.
SoCon POTW Ge’Lawn Guyn doing it all for Bucs
The SoCon player of the week for Jan. 19-25, senior guard Ge’Lawn Guyn’s game-winning shots at Georgia Tech (11/22) and at home in the Bucs’ win over Mercer (1/21) are just two of the most obvious indictations of the play and leadership he has displayed so far at ETSU ... Heading into the Wofford matchup, Guyn leads the team in scoring (18.0 ppg), blocks (0.8 bpg) and steals (1.1), and is third on the squad in rebounding (3.8 rpg), and assists (1.8 apg) ... In multiple games this season, Guyn has made several clutch shots, including game-saving baskets in regulation and game-winning scores in overtime.
Cromer meeting expectations, earns SoCon POTW
When transfer junior guard T.J. Cromer (Albany, Ga.) joined the Buccaneers, he was touted as a scoring threat and a player that would provide some offensive bunch ... He has lived up to that billing, and is currently second on the team with 15.1 points per game and is leading the team with 3.1 assists per contest ... Earlier this year, Cromer hit the game-winning shot against UNC Greensboro (1/9), scoring 20 points and dishing out a career high six assists ... He then followed up that performance with a game-high 23 points and tied the school record for 3-point field goal percentage in a game with a 6-of-7 effort (.875) from outside the arc in the win over VMI (1/11).
Bradford, Bello becoming “game changers” for Bucs
In the Bucs recent win over Western Carolina (2/15), both sophomore guard Desonta Bradford (Humboldt) and senior guard Deuce Bello (Greensboro, N.C.) showed a great deal of development and potential ... Bello took advantage of his second start this season to set or match career highs for points (20) and rebounds (7), while Bradford posted a career high with 18 points. ... In fact, Bradford scored 15 of 23 points for ETSU during one a decisive stretch during the second half.
Bucs “bank”ing on production from junior Isaac Banks
In recent games, junior forward Isaac Banks (New Orleans, La.) has definitely stepped up his production ... He most recently posted a double-double with 10 points and a career high 18 rebounds in the win over The Citadel (2/18) ... He also had 14 rebounds in the win over Mercer (1/21), a double-double effort of 12 points and 12 rebounds in the win over N.C. Central (1/4), and a 10-point, seven-rebound showing in the win over Western Carolina (1/2) are showing that Banks’ output may be a trend and not a fluke ... In the Bucs’ win over Samford (1/14), Banks had 11 points and nine rebounds ... For the year, Banks is averaging 6.7 points and a team-high 6.6 rebounds per game.
Dishing out the assists
As the Bucs adjust and learn the new offensive system of first-year head coach Steve Forbes, the “buy-in” is starting to show up on the stat sheets ... In an eight-game stretch from 12/30 to 1/21, the Bucs enjoyed an efficient offensive approach, dishing out a total of 114 assists, for an average of 14.2 assists per game during that time. ... Prior to those eight outings, ETSU had averaged just over 12 assists per game. ... The team dished out a season-high 19 assists against Western, followed by 16 against N.C. Central, and 18 each in wins over UNCG and VMI.
Powering up in the Paint
Rebounding concerns weighed on the Buccaneers earlier this season, but in recent games the Bucs have appeared to make significant strides on the glass ... In particular, ETSU dominated the paint in the 88-51 win over VMI, outrebounding the Keydets 46-26 ... In that game, the Bucs held a 33-21 on the defensive glass and a 13-5 advantage on the offensive boards ... Most recently, the Bucs out-rebounded The Citadel 58-36 on Feb. 18 ... In the Bucs’ 20 wins this season, the team holds an overall +4.2 rebound advantage, compared to a -7.6 margin in their nine losses.
Bucs make history with win at Georgia Tech
While ETSU has enjoyed its share of wins over “major” opposition in the past, the Bucs’ win over Georgia Tech earlier this season marked the programs first win over an Atlantic Coast Conference school since defeating N.C. State back in 1991 ... It was also the team’s first win over a “Power 5” Conference team since dropping Arkansas back during the 2009-10 season, and the first win over Georgia Tech since the 1978-79 campaign.
Three-point streak for Bucs dates back nearly 20 years
Since Feb. 16, 1987 in a game against Davidson, the Bucs have made at least one 3-pointer in 889 consecutive games. ... ETSU was 0-for-8 in that 1987 game. ... The Bucs currently rank as the 7th longest streak in the NCAA.
Bucs postseason resume ranks among mid-major bests
The ETSU men’s basketball team has enjoyed its share of postseason success and ranks as one of the nation’s most prestigious basketball programs ... The Buccaneers have earned berths to the NCAA Tournament nine times (1969, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 2003, 2004, 2009, 2010) and NIT twice (1983, 2007) ... The Bucs made their second trip all-time to the CIT Postseason Tournament in 2014, marking the program’s 13th postseason tournament appearance all-time ... In the Bucs first CIT appearance in 2011, ETSU went 2-1 with wins over Furman and Ohio, advancing to the tournament semifinals before losing to Iona in a hard-fought 83-80 contest at the Dome ... In 2014, the Bucs went 1-1, defeating fellow Southern Conference member Chattanooga before falling to Towson in the quarterfinals.
Forbes and company revamp Bucs’ lineup for 2015-16
The Bucs added a wealth of talent to their roster this year with players like Division I senior transfers Ge’Lawn Guyn (Lexington, Ky.) from Cincinnati and Deuce Bello (Greensboro, N.C.) from Missouri … In addition, junior college transfer T.J. Cromer (Albany, Ga.) joins the Bucs after a successful career as a point producer at Columbia State, and true freshman Shemar Johnson (Columbus, Miss.) brings exceptional height to the wing position at 6-foot-6 … In the frontcourt, Banks is the lone returning player but is joined by 7-foot center Peter Jurkin (Juba, South Sudan), who sat out last season with ETSU after transferring from Indiana … Along with those two, the Bucs have also added help for the inside game this season by signing junior college transfers Nigel Holley (Wilmington, N.C.) and Abednego “Benny” Lufile (Burlington, Ontario, Canada), as well as true freshman post Toriano Stokes (Memphis, Tenn.) … The Bucs have also added Indiana transfer Hanner Mosquera-Perea (Istmina, Colombia) and Wichita State transfer Tevin Glass (Greensboro, N.C.) who will miss this season due to NCAA transfer rules.