VILLANOVA, PA. 12/16/2012 – The Villanova Wildcats men’s basketball team won a game that shows the team is learning how to play together, and their young big men are becoming an asset to the team defeating the Blue Hens of Delaware 75 – 65 at the Pavilion. Villanova has won three in a row, and four of their last five. The growth of the team is what has impressed Coach Jay Wright. defeating the Blue Hens of Delaware 75 – 65 at The Pavilion. Villanova has won three in a row, and four of their last five. This game showed that his big men are learning the game, and to play together.
“We’re ususally so guard oriented that people try to take away our guards,” said Wright. “It’s exciting that our forwards are finding each other and playing well off each other.
In getting the victory the Wildcats were able to do so with good inside play both on the offensive and defensive side of the floor. The big men combined to make 14 of 26 shots in the game. Redshirt Sophomore forward JayVaughn Pinkston led the team in scoring with 19 points. Pinkston made 6 of 11 shots, 2 of which were three-pointers, and added 6 rebounds, a blocked shot and a steal. Pinkston sees familiarity as a reason for improved play.”We try to help each other, work together in practice,” said Pinkston. “It’s just little things that we keep getting better at doing each day.”
The Wildcats out rebounded Delaware by a 43 – 27 margin. On the offensive glass the Wildcats took down 20 rebounds which gave the team a 29 – 7 advantage in Second Chance points. Pinkston, Freshman forward Daniel Ochefu, and Sophomore guard Achraf Yacoubou each took down four offensive rebounds each. Ochefu and Yacoubou both had 7 total rebounds.
“Our forwards played great, they looked for each other great, especially Daniel (Ochefu) and JayVaughn (Pinkston) who looked for each other on offense,” said Wright
Ochefu scored 11 points. Junior guard James Bell contributed 14 points, and sophomore guard Darrun Hilliard scored 10. Villanova also won the hustle stats getting 9 blocked shots and 9 steals in the contest. Senior forward Maurice Sutton blocked 5 shots and handed out 5 assists. Delaware was forced to start their offense far from the basket while Villanova took the ball to the basket getting 16 assists on 28 field goals.
Guard Devon Saddler led the Blue Hens with 19 points. Guard Jarvis Threatt added 15 points.
Earlier this week Villanova won an emotional game against Saint Joseph’s. The team was in the midst of exams. Then the school opted to join seven other Catholic institutions in a conference to be formed. There were plenty of distractions for a young team. But the Wildcats kept their focus, earned the win, and is growing as a team.
“We talked a lot about that,” Wright said. “It was a learning experience, after the Saint Joe’s game, being in finals, our practice schedule is way off. There was a lot of maturity. I was pleased with that.”
Written By: Glenn Papazian
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