Wildcats Defensive Pressure Key in 70-38 Victory over The Citadel
DAVIDSON, N.C. – De'Mon Brooks scored a game-high 15 points and led 11 Davidson players in scoring as the Wildcats completed a 70-38 victory over The Citadel at Belk Arena in Thursday evening Southern Conference action.
Brooks teamed with Jake Cohen, who scored 12 points, to lead a Davidson unit that knocked down 24-of-57 (42.1%) from the floor. The Wildcats (10-7, 5-1 SoCon) finished with seven 3-pointers, behind two each from Cohen and teammate Chris Czerapowicz, and added another 15 points from the free throw line.
Cohen also made his presence felt on the defensive end for the Cats with two blocks and two steals, as Davidson forced 26 Citadel turnovers and took advantage of 22-point differential (27-5) in points off turnovers. Czerapowicz grabbed a team-best six rebounds to help provide the Wildcats with a 26-12 edge in points in the paint.
Meanwhile, Citadel freshman Matt Van Scyoc was the leading scorer for the Bulldogs (3-13, 0-6 SoCon) with eight points. Van Scyoc hit 2-of-7 from the field, including one 3-pointer, and knocked down all three free throw attempts. Teammate Mike Groselle finished with seven points and a game-high nine rebounds (four offensive). Sophomore P.J. Horgan led the way for The Citadel reserves, who accounted for 16 points, as he finished with five points and four rebounds.
Davidson came out of the second half gate on a 14-1 run, highlighted by four points apiece from the tandem of Brooks and Tom Droney, while Nic Cochran connected on his lone 3-pointer of the game to provide a 51-20 advantage.
Marshall Harris III drained the first Citadel bucket of the second half at the 13:31 mark, but Davidson quickly answered with the next five straight points to push the lead to 54-23.
The Bulldogs were unable to draw the margin to under 30 for the remaining 12:11 of the contest, as the despite a three points from both Van Scyoc and Raemond Robinson and a combined seven points from reserves Janeil Jenkins, Dylen Setzekorn and Quinton Marshall.
With all but one of their starters relegated to the bench, Davidson amassed 18 points over the final 11:20 of the game to complete the victory.
At the half, Jake Cohen lead the way for Davidson with 12 points, connecting on 4-of-7 from the field and nailing a pair of 3-pointers, as the Wildcats assumed a 38-19 lead.
Cohen was joined in scoring by the duo of Brooks (9 points) and Czerapowicz (8), as Davidson converted 15-of-28 (53.6%) from the field in the first half. Five of those field goals, including two each from Cohen and Czerapowicz, were from beyond the arc for the Wildcats.
The Citadel countered with the scoring combination of Groselle (6 points) and Van Scyoc (5). The Bulldogs were unable to establish any offensive rhythm, hitting just 6-of-14 (42.9%) from the field, as they were forced into 16 turnovers. This allowed Davidson to establish a 22-2 advantage in points off turnovers.
Groselle also anchored the post for the Cadets with six rebounds, climbing the offensive boards on two occasions. The Citadel finished with a 12-10 edge on glass in the opening frame.
Davidson established an early 7-0 lead following a 3-pointer by Czerapowicz and a series of jumpers by Brooks at the 15:42 mark.
The Bulldogs earned their first points on a series of free throws by Van Scyoc, which were quickly followed by consecutive layups from Groselle, trimming the lead to 7-6 with 13:59 remaining.
Four Citadel turnovers played a key part in an 11-0 Wildcat run over the next 3:28, which included five points by Cohen, as Davidson moved in front 18-6.
Horgan halted The Citadel scoring drought with a jumper in the paint at the 8:52 mark, and just under a minute later a jumper from the right elbow from Ashton Moore narrowed the margin to 20-10.
The Bulldogs answered seven Davidson points with buckets from the trio of Groselle, Van Scyoc and Horgan, keeping themselves within striking distance, 27-17, with just over six minutes remaining in the half.
Davidson again turned up the defensive pressure, forcing five Bulldog turnovers, which led to an 11-2 run to close the half. Brooks opened the run with four points, while Cohen tacked on five points inside the final minute of action, to make for the 19-point halftime advantage.
The Citadel remains on the road this weekend as the Bulldogs head to Georgia Southern for a 7 p.m. meeting with the Eagles at Hanner Fieldhouse on Saturday, Jan. 19.