Road overtime games don't faze Lafayette Print
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Friday, 25 January 2008 09:04
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 Need proof how unfair college basketball can be?
M and the Bears' 116-110 victory was worth one win.
Lafayette has played five overtime periods on the road this season and for their 25 extra minutes away from home the Leopards have gotten five wins.
``I'll take what we've done over the five overtimes on one night,'' Lafayette coach Fran O'Hanlon said Thursday. ``I don't know if could take it with five in one night.''
Last weekend's 103-99 win at Navy was Lafayette's sixth overtime win of the season and five of those have been on the road, an NCAA single season record.
Four teams - Delaware (1972-73), Arizona State (1980-81), Cal State Fullerton (1988-89) and New Mexico State (1993-94) - had managed four overtime road wins.
``I never even heard of anything like this. It's one of those quirky things to be involved in so many overtime games and then being on the road and then to win them,'' O'Hanlon said. ``I can't put a finger on it. I guess it happens once in a blue moon.''
It has meant a lot to the Leopards. They were picked to finish last in the Patriot League this season, but after Wednesday night's 80-68 victory over Bucknell the Leopards (13-6, 4-0) are the conference's lone unbeaten team.
``It has really affected our confidence,'' O'Hanlon said. ``You could feel a positive vibe at the end of regulation of the last two games against Colgate and Navy. Even when we were down 15 points in the second half we still felt momentum was certainly on our side.
``They have the feeling they are comeback kids, but I told them not to get too happy because the same team that was down big was us. We can't be living on the edge.''
The six overtime wins - there was one at home over Maryland-Baltimore County - tied the NCAA record for a season held by Wake Forest (1983-84) and Chattanooga (1988-89). Lafayette has won 10 straight overtime games in a span that began Dec. 13, 2004, against Cal State Northridge. The Leopards are one overtime win short of tying the NCAA mark of 11 held by Louisville, Massachusetts and Virginia.
There has also been good news off the court for the Leopards.
Lafayette received the NCAA Public Recognition Award for recording an NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate in the top 10 percent of all men's basketball teams. It was also recognized by the NCAA for recording an 83 percent graduation rate, 20 percent better than the average federal graduation rates of all student-athletes.
SCHEYER'S FACE: Duke's Jon Scheyer doesn't have a game face. The sophomore guard has lots of them.
It seems Scheyer can't do anything on the court - from catching a pass to taking a shot or defending his man - without raising and lowering his eyebrows, opening and closing his mouth and otherwise contorting his face in a variety of expressions.
``I don't know where he gets it from - like Michael Jordan sticking his tongue out,'' teammate Gerald Henderson said. ``Maybe because he's from Chicago, he acquired that.''
Scheyer and the Blue Devils laugh about his ever-changing facial expressions and also marvel at the attention it draws on the road, perhaps most memorably when copied pictures of a ``Scheyer Face'' were handed out to nearly everyone in Maryland's notoriously nasty student section.
``It's hard not to notice all the posters they hold up,'' Scheyer said. ``They know that on the road that's what people get on me for, so they're just messing with me. That's my thing, I guess. ... Honestly, I can't believe the amount of time it takes to make those things.''
STILL UPSET: Carson-Newman coach Dale Clayton and athletic director David Barger criticized the South Atlantic Conference's response to an official's mistake in the Eagles' 83-82 loss to Wingate last week.
In the second half, Wingate's Brian Grier was credited with two points on a shot that did not enter the basket.
Two days later, the conference issued a statement that said the officials had been disciplined, but the final score would stand.
``Disciplining the actions of the officials involved in our game (with Wingate) does not address the heart of the matter,'' Clayton said in a statement. ``I'm very disappointed (South Atlantic Conference) Commissioner Doug Echols has chosen to disregard the real issues in this situation, the student-athletes involved and integrity of the game.''
Barger also issued a statement.
``Too many things were compromised for there to be nothing done about how this situation impacts the South Atlantic Conference standings and NCAA Regional Rankings,'' he said. ``Our biggest concern is the message that has been sent to our student-athletes.''
3 FOR ALL: Dre Smith of George Mason set an NCAA record last weekend when he went 10-for-10 from 3-point range in the Patriots' 96-75 victory over James Madison.
Smith, who finished with a career-high 34 points, broke the record of 9-for-9 held by Mark Poag of Old Dominion in 1997, Markus Wilson of Evansville in 1998 and Donnie McGrath of Providence in 2005.
The record for consecutive 3s in one game is 11 set by Gary Bossert of Niagara who went 12-for-14 against Siena on Jan. 7, 1987, the first season the 3-point line was introduced.
The record for consecutive 3s made over more than one game is 15 by Todd Leslie of Northwestern who did it over a four-game span in December 1990.
Smith missed his last 3-point attempt against Hofstra, George Mason's game before James Madison, and he missed his first against Old Dominion in the Patriots' first game after he set the record.
There's something about James Madison's uniforms that gets Smith going from 3-point range. In the Colonial Athletic Association tournament's first round last season, Smith hit his first seven 3-point attempts against James Madison then missed his last one - a 30-footer in the final minute to avoid a shot-clock violation.
MORE 3S: The latest NCAA statistics show you can stay in the same gym to see the best individual and team as far as 3-point shooting goes.
Junior Josh Mayo of Illinois-Chicago leads Division I hitting 55.4 percent (56-for-101) from beyond the arc. His 3-point percentage is better than his overall field goal percentage of 48.7 percent (96-for-197).
The Flames are shooting a Division I-best 43.8 percent from 3-point range (148-for-338).
AP Sports Writer Joedy McCreary from Raleigh, N.C., contributed to this report

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