Colonials Rebound in Second Half to Squash Hornets
Tony Taylor scored 20 points to lead the Colonials to victory over Delaware State 77-59 at the Smith Center in Washington, DC on December 31, 2011. Eugene Huskey/DC Sports Box file photoWASHINGTON, D.C. - The George Washington Colonials and Delaware State Hornets each entered Saturday’s contest looking to end lengthy losing streaks and get their programs back on schedule before the season went spiraling, uncontrollably, into the depths of the point of no return. The Hornets seemed too content to let fate dictate which way their season was headed, while the Colonials clearly wanted to be squarely in the drivers’ seat with their season hanging in the balance.
George Washington (5-8) overcame a surprising quick start (considering they’d traveled overnight after a loss to Georgia) by Delaware State (4-8) to dominate the Hornets and claim a 77-59 victory, end their own seven game losing streak, and push the Hornets’ slide to four straight games.
DSU looked to be ready to play the part of worthy contender early in the game. The Hornets took an early lead at 9-6 before the Colonials responded with a 27-16 run over the final 13-plus minutes of the first half that seemed to put the game out of reach. Hornets guard Casey Walker connected on a three pointer that brought the game to within nine points early in the second half, but the Hornets wouldn’t get any closer. George Washington blew the game open on an 18-3 run following Walker’s basket.
Senior guard Tony Taylor took control of the game immediately after realizing the Hornets had no one on their roster capable of stopping him. Taylor dominated with his performance, shooting 80 percent from the field (including 2-for-2 from three point range) en route to a 20 point, three assists, three rebound performance. Delaware State head coach Greg Jackson turned to freshman Amere May to provide a spark to try to match Taylor’s explosion. May responded with a career-high 22 point outburst – which may have been enough had it been a game of one-on-one. But Taylor’s squad provided far more support than did May’s.
Jabari Edwards also did a solid job of establishing his presence in the game – predominantly in the post, where the Hornets defenders could not keep him off of the glass. Edwards finished with 11 points and nine rebounds – seven of them offensive rebounds that allowed him some easy offensive opportunities.
Taylor’s backcourt mate Lasan Kromah controlled the pace of the Colonials attack and turned in the most impressive, all-around effort. Kromah chipped in everywhere necessary, scoring 15 points and adding five rebounds, five assists, three steals and three blocks to his statline.
Four of George Washington’s five starters scored in double figures, and despite May’s outburst, the Colonial reserves still managed to be far more productive. May’s 22 point effort was just one shy of the team’s total bench output of 23 points. George Washington got 19 points, 17 rebounds, nine assists, and a block from the reserves.
While Delaware State shouldn’t be viewed as a huge win, when you’re losing any win is a huge win. Runs can’t start without the first win and the Colonials will look to build such a run when they resume play at St. Bonaventure on Wednesday to open conference play.