Sunday, 11 November 2012 19:56

Marshall men fall at Villanova, 80-68, Herd 1-1 on season

Written by  MU SPORTS INFORMATION RELEASES, edited by Woody Woodrum for HI
VILLANOVA, Pa. – Junior D.D. Scarver erupted for 22 points, but it was not enough as the Marshall men’s basketball team dropped its first game of the season, 80-68 at Villanova Sunday.

The Thundering Herd fell to 1-1 on the young season while the Wildcats improved to 2-0.

The game, played in front of 6,500 at The Pavilion, was Marshall’s first of four in the 2K Sports Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project.

Scarver’s 22 points came on 8-of-14 shooting from the field including 5-for-7 from three-point range. In his two games at Marshall, the transfer from Trinity Valley Community College has averaged 20 points per contest.

The Wildcats had their own sharp-shooting newcomer in freshman Ryan Arcidiacono.

Of his game-high 25 points, 20 came in the first half. Arcidiacono finished 6-of-11 from the field including 4-of-9 from three-point range.

Usually an excellent rebounding team, Marshall struggled in that area. Villanova had 37 boards while the Herd finished with 23 and only three offensively.

“It was really disappointing that we didn’t defend in the first half and then the rebounding,” said Marshall Coach Tom Herrion.

“I know they’re a good rebounding team, but for us to have only three offensive rebounds is really concerning. If we don’t guard and rebound we have no chance.”

The game was tight throughout. Each time Villanova stretched its lead just eight or nine points, Marshall would answer with a small run of its own.

Herd sophomore Chris Martin hit several big shots to keep it close, finishing with a career-high 13 points on five field goals, three from beyond-the-arc.

The Herd held a slim lead of 7-6 early in the game. After trailing at the half, 43-35, the Herd came within two points of the Wildcats in the second period. A Scarver three cut the Villanova lead to 59-57 with 9:24 to play, but the home team scored the next seven points to extend the lead to nine (66-57, 8:50).

A Martin three-pointer cut the Wildcat lead to 70-68 with 4:01 remaining capping an 11-4 run, but the Villanova defense tightened and Marshall missed its remaining six shot attempts to end the game with a 80-68 loss.

The final margin of 12 was the Wildcats’ largest lead, and didn’t really reflect how close the game was throughout for the Herd and the Wildcats, meeting for the first time in the regular season.

Nova has a 2-1 mark against the Herd all-time, falling to Marshall in the opening round of the 1967 NIT, then beating Marshall in the opening round of the 1984 NCAA Tournament.

Both teams shot well from the floor as Marshall was 45.3 percent including 44.4 percent (12-of-27) from three-point range.

Villanova was 50 percent including 40.9 percent (9-of-22) from beyond-the-arc.

Both teams also had their share of turnovers, 17 from the Wildcats and 16 by the Herd — down three from 19 in Marshall’s opening win over Longwood.

The biggest difference in the game was at the free throw line, or rather the lack of trips there for the Herd on the road.

Marshall committed 26 fouls, sending Villanova to the free throw line 37 times. The Wildcats made 25 of them for 67.6 percent.

Villanova was whistled for 13 fouls which resulted in the Herd’s 8-for-15 (53.3 percent) effort at the free throw line.

“We were in dire foul trouble,” Herrion said. “Thirty-seven to 15 at the foul line, that’s a tell-tale sign for a long afternoon.

“Clearly we didn’t play without fouling and didn’t adjust to the whistle. For 40 minutes, we needed to do a better job.”

Junior Dennis Tinnon joined Scarver and Martin in double-figures with 15 points to go with nine rebounds, bouncing back from a sub-par effort in the opener with five points and four rebounds.

Both he and junior Elijah Pittman finished 4-of-7 from the field. Pittman, another junior college transfer for the Herd in 2012-13, finished with 12 points, nine coming from three-point range as he was 3-of-5 from there.

Marshall will stay on the road for three more games in the 2K Classic, heading back to the northeast for three games at the University of Hofstra on Long Island in Hempstead, N.Y.

The Herd will open the next round of the Classic by playing Division II University of District of Columbia this Friday at 4:30 p.m., with airtime of 3:00 p.m. on The Dawg, 93.7 FM and SuperTalk 94.1 FM and AM 930.

Marshall will then face the Summit League defending champs from South Dakota State on Saturday (a game heard only in Huntington on SuperTalk 94.1 FM and AM 930, with Marshall football vs. Houston heard on The Dawg, 93.7 FM in Huntington and all over the West Virginia Lottery Thundering Herd/IMG Sports Network stations) at 2:30 p.m., and then playing the host Pride of Hofstra on Sunday, with this game only on The Dawg, 93.7 FM in the Huntington area.

“We got beat with some of our own medicine and that’s unacceptable,” said Herrion of Villanova’s domination on the glass. “That’s what’s good about these early games is that you can find out a lot about your team early on playing against high caliber teams. This game, win or loss wasn’t going to define our season.

“We have a lot of season left.”

Marshall’s next home game will be Saturday, Nov. 24, against the WAC champs of 2011-12, Nevada. The Wolf Pack is now a member of the Mountain West Conference, and that game is 7 p.m. in the Henderson Center, the first of three straight home games with long-time rival Morehead State on Nov. 28 and UNC-Wilmington in on Dec. 1.
Last modified on Thursday, 15 November 2012 12:23

Site Links