State Line Hoops
Report & Rankings©
— 12/20/01 —
THE TOP TEN
1. Duke ... Jason Williams took over
for the Blue Devils, who trailed Kentucky by 12 points in the second
half. Williams scored 23 of Duke’s last 31 points in regulation and
finished with a career-high 38.
“I rode him as hard as a jockey can ride a horse,” said Duke coach
Mike Krzyzewski. “I just kept calling his number.”
Williams’ three-point play with 1:39 left in overtime put Duke
(10-0) ahead to stay at 91-89 with 1:39 to go. Mike Dunleavy added 21
points for Duke, which isn’t scheduled to play again until Dec. 29
when the Devils host San Diego State (ABC).
2. Wake Forest ... The Deacons are No.
20 in both major polls. Darius Songaila scored a career-high 29 points
as Wake won its ACC opener 93-72 over Florida State on Sunday night.
Josh Howard scored 21 points as the Deacons improved to 8-2 with an
89-60 win over St. Francis (Pa.) on Wednesday night. The Deacons
return to Madison Square Garden on Saturday for a matchup with St.
John’s. Wake beat Fresno State and lost to Syracuse at the Garden
earlier this season in the preseason NIT.
3. College of Charleston ... The
Cougars came from 17 points down at UNC Wilmington to top the Seahawks
60-58 on Saturday night. Coach John Kresse’s club made 11 of its first
13 shots in the second half after trailing 35-18 at the break. Jeff
Bolton, who leads the 6-1 Cougars with a 19.6-point scoring average,
had 16 points against the Seahawks while freshman Shannon Chambers had
13 points and seven rebounds. Chambers is averaging 11.0 points and
“They chased us with their pressure in the first half and we made
some adjustments in the second half,” Kresse said.
The Cougars play North Carolina in Charlotte on Friday night.
4. N.C. State ... The Wolfpack
improved to 9-2 with a 70-50 win over Charleston Southern on Wednesday
night as Marcus Melvin scored 17 points. State pulled away from a
34-29 lead at the half. It was the fourth straight win for the
Wolfpack, which is scheduled to play its next game at Conference USA
member Houston at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. Guard Anthony Grundy was
averaging 14.7 points for the Pack after a 92-54 win over
UNC-Asheville on Saturday.
UNC-A coach Eddie Biedenbach, who played at State in the mid-60s
and later was an assistant for the Pack, said, “This is a pretty darn
good State team. They’re bigger and more physical than I expected.”
5. South Carolina ... Former East
Carolina and Wake Forest coach Dave Odom has the fans excited in
Columbia with the Gamecocks’ 7-3 start. USC improved to 10-0 all-time
against South Carolina State with a 69-50 win over the Bulldogs on
Tuesday night as post player Marius Petravicius scored 16 points and
had a career-high 12 rebounds. Petravicius normally splits time with
Tony Kitchings, who was out with a concussion. Moses Malone Jr., son
of the former NBA great, led the Bulldogs with 16 points. USC hosts
The Citadel tonight. Jamel Bradley is the Gamecocks’ top scorer with a
14.8 scoring average. Aaron Lucas is averaging 11.9 points and 5.5
assists. Petravicius is averaging 10.1 points and 6.7 rebounds.
6. Charlotte ... The 49ers climbed to
5-4 with an 86-58 win over Texas-El Paso on Tuesday night as senior
shooting guard Jobey Thomas led the way with 24 points on 6 of 10
shooting behind the 3-point arc. A 14-2 run late in the first half
helped UNCC break a tie at 27 and establish a 41-29 lead at the half.
The lead grew as large as 35 points in the second half. Charlotte led
42-22 on the boards to offset 53.2 percent field goal shooting by the
Miners. Charlotte visits unbeaten Miami (10-0) on Saturday.
7. UNC Wilmington ... The Seahawks
seemingly had a win over College of Charleston in the bag, leading by
17 points at the half but dropping their first non-conference game at
home since Feb. 11, 1999, an eight-game string. Junior guard Brett
Blizzard, who is hitting 51 percent of his 3-point attempts, led the
Seahawks (4-5) with 16 points. Blizzard is averaging 19.2 points and
senior forward Ed Williams is averaging 11.0 points and 6.2 rebounds.
The Seahawks open Colonial Athletic Association play at Old Dominion
on Friday night. UNCW is the preseason league favorite.
8. UNC Greensboro ... The Spartans
have been taking a break since an 89-74 loss at Arkansas on Dec. 10 in
Razorbacks coach Nolan Richardson’s 500th career win. UNCG (5-2)
returns to action Thursday night at home against Norfolk State. James
Maye, who scored 22 points at Arkansas, is leading the Spartans in
scoring with a 13.2-point average. Courtney Eldridge is averaging
11.8. David Schuck (10.3) and Ronnie Taylor (10.3) are also in double
figures for Coach Fran McCaffery’s club.
9. Furman ... The Paladins saw a
six-game winning streak come to an end on Saturday with a 68-60 loss
at Wisconsin despite 17 points from Anthony Thomas and 16 from
Guilherme Da Luz. Thomas leads Furman’s scoring with a 15.5 average.
Karim Souchu is at 15.2 and Da Luz averages 12.2. Paco Gonzalez is
Furman’s leading rebounder at 6.2 per game. Saint Louis extended a
29-24 halftime lead to a 73-59 win over the Paladins on Wednesday
night despite 13 points by Thomas and 10 by Da Luz. Gonzalez had 11
rebounds. Furman (6-3) is idle until hosting the Poinsetta Holiday
Classic on Dec. 28-29. The field includes Macalester, Furman’s opening
opponent, as well as Gardner Webb and Yale.
10. The Citadel ... The Bulldogs (7-2) take a four-game
winning streak to South Carolina tonight. Shooting guard Travis
Cantrell leads The Citadel with a 16.7-point scoring average. Cliff
Washburn is a workhorse inside with a 10.2 scoring average and a 6.4
“South Carolina is a very fine team playing exceptionally well
right now,” said Bulldogs coach Pat Dennis. “Their two blowout wins
over Clemson and Providence jump out as to how talented they are.
Coach (Dave) Odom has done a great job of getting his team ready to
play, similar to what he did at Wake Forest where he had great
THE NOT-SO-SWEET 17
14. Appalachian State
15. East Carolina ... The Pirates snapped a six-game losing streak
with a 64-52 win over South Carolina-Spartanburg on Saturday with a
balanced scoring attack that included 12 points each from Fred Primus
and Bryan Foxx. Brandon Hawkins added 11 and Kenyatta Brown scored 10.
Jonathan Moore and Erroyl Bing each had seven rebounds as ECU (3-6)
controlled the boards, 40-34. The Pirates play Middle Tennessee State
at home tonight. Cincinnati visits Jan. 5 at 6 p.m. in ECU’s first
ever C-USA game. Gabriel Mikulas, the Pirates’ top scorer last season
with a 15.0 average, is eligible to play at UAB on Jan. 8.
16. North Carolina
19. Western Carolina
20. Charleston Southern
22. South Carolina State
23. UNC Asheville
25. North Carolina A&T
26. High Point
27. Coastal Carolina