The Dude
 12/16/2016 6:45:47 PM      Replies: 36

The Dude12/10/2016 6:14:39 PM

Well, we shot the 3 very well, shot FTs very well, didn't really dominate otherwise but its a solid win. Sina JR and Bolden all shot well from 3. 

3-12 and 5 TOs for TC despite a 13-13-6 game.  20 pts for Sina.  Bolden flashed some talent, pair of 3's, got up for a block/foul.  Quiet days from Toro Marfo and Smith, aka The Big 3.

Thoughts? Reactions?

ziik12/10/2016 6:19:33 PM

TC to Smith, was a nice, nice move. 

GWG12/10/2016 6:21:46 PM

Quick observation since I'm on my phone- I thought our rebounding was worse than the stats sheet shows, looked to me like we were letting Howard get too many offensive rebounds and second (or third... or fourth...) chance points- particularly in the second half. Solid game though, it wasn't nice to see us shoot the three well for the second game in a row and it wasn't nice to see Sina have a big night. Sina looked like he was forcing fewer shots and taking fewer of those transition threes- I think that was a big part of his big night tonight. He is a talented shooter, difference tonight is he was getting the ball in rhythm and getting good open looks.


GWG12/10/2016 6:23:19 PM

It was nice- my phone decided to autocorrect to wasn't there for some reason. Our three point shooting and Sina's big game were in fact nice to see haha.

DC Native12/10/2016 6:24:32 PM

Quality minutes for our freshmen.

herve12/10/2016 6:36:56 PM

TC not that far from a triple-double. He's like an advanced Yegor (which is almost hard to write, considering what a myth Yegor is to me now).

herve12/10/2016 6:39:50 PM

Probably going to win a lot of games when you shoot 45% from the floor, 50% from '3 and 87% from the line...You also can't lean on that too long.

RKelley12/10/2016 6:48:08 PM

Very nice performance. Sloppy at times, but GW clearly wasn't going full-tilt for a lot of the game.

2 Guards:

Roland 11 points, 2r/2a/1to.

Hart 6 points, 1r/3a/0to

Bolden 6 points 2r/2a/2to

Total: 23 points 5 REB, 4 A, 3to

Nice.Went 20-23 from FT, continue to draw a ton of fouls. They did too actually, but that's one of their few strengths. Roland's drastically improved, and now very effective shooting, along with Sina's and Cav's led to superb 13-26 3P day.

Easy game, but it's hard to get those for GW the last few years it seems. 13 TO is still too much against this kind of team however.


RKelley12/10/2016 6:50:07 PM


I agree on the rebounding, but I think that was mostly when we had our "small" lineup in, in the late first half and a lot of the second half. When Toro was in, along with Cavanaugh and Smith, we were very good at rebounding per usual.

Marfo shows flashes of brilliance, but he's raw. He does get stuffed a ton in the post, whoever said that the other day was right. He needs to move more quickly and confidently.

RKelley12/10/2016 6:54:51 PM

Turnover credits in basketball are really inaccurate at assigning fault. 

Sina did way more things that led to turnovers than his 1 credited turnover suggests. One of those, actually, was assigned to JR as a turnover if I remmeber correctly. A lot of forced passes, and out-of-control play all-around. 5-5 from three to start, then 0-5 the rest of the game. The result is still an excellent 5-10, but he is just such a curly sue. 6:55:37 PM

*2 tos for Roland, and 4 Fouls

FredD12/10/2016 7:09:23 PM

Surprised it took so long for mojo to go man. Goss surprised me. He is not great but he was so much better than last year. Much calmer. I'm not saying Howard is good or Goss will get consistent minutes. It's just so different than my recollection of say Jaron Greene who remember standing stock still at mid court like a house on the side of the road.

RKelley12/10/2016 7:49:07 PM

Yeah the fouls get overlooked a lot. Smith and Roland foul too much, though Smith is in a role where he's going to draw those. 


Pembo12/10/2016 8:01:05 PM

Much to like today.  What I didn't like was how easily Howard penetrated against our zone defense in the first half.

If you are going to have that much penetration against a zone, you might as well play man to man.  That's just what we did in the second half.  And very effectively, until Howard brought in the speedy Ausar Madison (who I don't think played in the first half).  

He drove to the basket at will.  However, by then we had a big lead.

Oddly, we rebounded better in the zone than in man to man, and this was true even before Madison started breaking us down.  Once Madison came in, we had to switch off their bigger players constantly which made it difficult to control the defensive boards.  Lots of tips that we couldn't gain possession of.

Our three point shooting was great.  Obviously, it won't always be.  However, our often excellent ball movement against the Howard zone gave us lots of very good looks.  So this wasn't just lucky shooting.

I loved the way Smith, Hart, and Toro went crazy on the bench after Mitola hit his three.  Thid sort of thing is customary, but the GW guys took it to a high level.  Eventually, Toro had to pull Smith off the floor and back into his seat.

The celebration continued when Mitola left the floor after the final buzzer.

A fun game.





GW Alum Abroad12/10/2016 8:11:04 PM

First, I'd say Howard is the District's most likely NCAA team, should get the autobid from their conference if their guards get healthy. Second, stats aside, it is a good thing TC chose to do his Alberto Roma imitation today when he was not needed as Smith, Toro and (especially) Sina stepped it up. Third, frosh are improving, although the coaches need to spend more time with Marfo watching film so he learns to go to the hoop when he gets the ball instead ofmdoing one or two other things before he makes his move; it is very correctable and is (in my view) the true test of MoJo's head coaching acumen. Fourth, up next is yet another Florida school, why can'f that state's 29 electoral votes be enough to subject us to?

Cutis12/10/2016 8:33:37 PM

I sat near the Mitola family who were very excited when Adam hit the three. They got the shot on video on their phone. Alex is planning to see GW play in Philadelphia this year. Great bunch.

RKelley12/10/2016 9:13:00 PM

Sick, good for Adam. Seems like a good kid, and his brother was obviously a hard worker, a smart guy, fast and has a nice shot. Playmaker.

RKelley12/10/2016 9:18:02 PM

@Pembo nice post and rundown

Haha12/10/2016 10:46:24 PM

The game went pretty well and smooth. Hoping Tyler can shoot better for a bit (Alec Peters from Valpo is averaging 25+9!). Also hope Jair can handle the ball better. 

Long Suffering Fan12/10/2016 11:27:41 PM

Very little to complaint about with today's game.   Yes, we played an outmanned opponant, but we breezed through the entire game, as we were suppose to do.   We showed we have other scoring options besides Tyler and Yuta.   You can see the improvement of both Jair and Jordan with every game.    We had a whopping 20 assists on 23 made baskets.  The ball handlers are looking more confident.   We continue to be a dominent rebounding team (we let up a bit on the intensity after we opened a 15+ point lead) and even played some decent man to man defense.  And we did this without Yuta (and Steeves) and with the end of the bench playing significant minutes.  The team definitely seems to be improving as the out of conference schedule moves on.   You can see the growing confidence on the faces of the new players and the coaching staff.   My only complaints/concerns was the zone still has too many seams and is easily penetrated, and we are still prone to too many turnovers, many of the silly variety.  

Bigfan12/11/2016 12:22:07 AM

Little worried that we were essentially living by the 3 and when we weren't hot in stretches, offense was bad.

But glad we won.

And also glad to see Adam Mitola. Would like to see more. Glad to hear his parents were there and his brother can view the video of another Mitola making a 3 pointer on the court at the Smith Center.

Pembo12/11/2016 12:36:54 AM

What kind of zone were we playing in the first?  It looked like a 2-2-1, an alignment I'm not familiar with.  It was a streched zone, as opposed to a compact one, but we weren't trapping up top as we did in Lonergan's 1-3-1.  

We were double teaming often on passes to the wings, though and this, coupled with how spread out we were, gave rise to many of the seams.  Or so it looked to me. 

Against Temple, the zone seemed more compact.  There wasn't nearly as much penetration.  There were open looks outside, but fortunately Temple didn't shoot well.

My understanding of defensive tactics is rather dated.  Maybe the defense we played in the first half is a common one.  It just seemed odd to me.  


The Dude12/11/2016 12:54:28 AM

As well as we shot, felt like a game we should have led by even more.  Good pair of back to back wins though, first good opponent road win, and first convincing start to finish game win.

Quick word about Howard, picked 4th in the MEAC and 309th preseason.  

Tuna Can12/11/2016 5:59:33 AM

Herve, I see your point on the percentages, but for this team as it is configured, I would take as many open 3's as possible -- assuming those shots are from a group of 5 or so players with decent range and with respect to our offensive rebounding.

A Howard game will be notable in that Howard was given the right to hack away by the Refs in the paint. Even with that, I loved the success that we were having with the high post passing from Toro along with TC. From the Chat area, there were a number of comments about how TC was giving up TOs in the paint, but there were numerous fouls not called--and it could have been a 25 to 30 point lead, if they called the paint evenly. (basing that on lost and gained possessions).

The coaching staff seems to be doing a wonderful job of getting minutes to the newer players. MoJo is also doing a credible job of getting guys to play within their success zone. There is a nice factor that all of our bigs except from Marfo, at this stage, can take an open 3. The problem with multiple "stop signs" for shooters is that your rebounders are constantly deciding to crash or not crash the glass based on who's hands are holding the ball at the arc. With this team, there is a rhythm where, if most of the guys has a really open look, everyone who should be crashing the boards are going.

About coaching to success, MoJo is being careful--thus the zone in the first half. He knows that he can go Man in the 2nd and create loads of empty possessions for a team like Howard--which indeed happened. Even with some rather cold shooting from within the arc for GW, the margin kept growing. Chris Holm's post-game critical comments about not finding the shooter and fighting over picks was also true. These guys are winning games and still facing learning experiences. Jair's problems are correctable--same for the freshman bigs. Guys are getting minutes that will, in time, benefit the team down the road.

Final point.... when I see Toro helping to bring the ball up the court against token pressure, I am reminded of Kevin. He doesn't seem to be overwhelmed at all. From where we have gotten to at this point, we will be generating easier points soon, when pressed.

Maine Colonial12/11/2016 9:24:08 AM

ESPN is following Howard's season so hopefully the next episode feature GW's win. The last episode was a tearjerker:

2cents12/11/2016 10:19:01 AM

Thanks for sharing, Maine. You weren't kidding when you said "tear jerker."   

Maine Colonial12/11/2016 10:33:17 AM

Here's the LINK

dmvpiranha12/11/2016 1:09:10 PM

Good win against a Howard team that I think is definitely better than their record indicates. They were missing two of their best players and it showed at times on the offensive end in the second half. We didn't do well on Charles Williams when he was driving in the paint. For a freshman, he was playing very well even if he didn't shoot all that well. They didn't settle for bad shots like many teams with their roster would and at the end of the game Mojo clearly had a lot of praise for the Howard coach as he was talking to him for a while after shaking hands.

It was a great day shooting the ball from distance and we were good at the free throw line. We still somehow managed to shoot more FTs than them despite uncharacteristically fouling more than they did. Turnovers were down as well and I'm sure coach made that a focal point. We are a little too pass happy at times which lead to turnovers when we can take a quality shot beforehand. I agree with GWG that the rebounding margin did not appear to be as much in our favor than the box score indicates. The Bison pounded the glass on the offensive end and we weren't quite as dominant as we usually are in that category. What impressed me the most was that we didn't lose our lead when we put the end of our bench in. For every ML team that I can remember, putting in the last bench players resulted in a lost lead. I think that showed some of Mojo's coaching ability. He also appeared to address all the concerns that I had after the game; preventing players from getting into the lane at will and playing 40 minutes of basketball on both ends of the ball. We didn't always close out on their shooters in the first half, that improved in the second. It's good that we are playing only three games in the next 19 days. Hopefully we can get healthy for conference play and get some rest.

Tyler - another tough day shooting the ball, this time mostly from missed shots in the lane. Seems to have got his three point stroke back. A few too many turnovers today, but was also just 4 assists away from a triple double. Who was the last GW player to record a triple double?

Sina - he took a lot of jump shots, but unlike the previous several games, he was actually attempting shots wide open instead of contested ones. Would still like him to drive more. Most of his scoring came in the first half. Had a good assist to turnover ratio and wasn't dribbling as much around the perimeter (partially due to Bolden playing the point when both players were in). Overall, a more focused Sina today which we need more of.

Toro - lost his touch near the rim again. Surprisingly only two rebounds today and a few silly fouls. Not his best game, but had a great block to start the second half. He's usually open for a jumper just inside the arc when we pass it to the inside so if he makes more of those that would help us a lot.

Smith - unfortunately got into foul trouble in the first half, but had some nice moments in the second including the alley-oop. His fouls tended to loose ball fouls, so I'm okay with them. It's good to be aggressive with active hands on the defensive end. Also had none in the second half.

Roland - another good game shooting the ball. Seems to fall down more often than any other player on a lot of shots. Maybe he shoots them as fadeaways? Had his usual couple of careless turnovers. Usually good for a couple of nice assists per game. Forced a backcourt violation on an inbounds pass. Defense pretty good. Don't agree with a lot of the fouls he was called for. It's frustrating to see hand check fouls be called sometimes. 

Hart - had another nice jumper from just inside the arc in the corner today. I think that is one of his sweet spots. Also had a nice dunk as well in transition from Bolden. There was one play where he out jumped all the other players in the lane after a shot was missed by a player but his timing was just a little off for the offensive putback. That would have been a nice play. Had three assists which is an added bonus if he can give that to us more routinely. Surprisingly missed all shots from distance. I wonder if any defender buys his pump fake when he is standing 40-45 feet from the basket. He has made that shot before (like in the NIT last year). Saw a near 50-50 split with Jordan today with Roland getting a couple more minutes. I think that distribution was pretty much on target today.

Goss - had a great game today. Had a nice eurostep on a made finger-roll shot. Knocked down both of his FTs. Had a couple of blocks (although the second was very close to goaltending). Recorded a steal as well. Seems to be a crowd favorite. The colonial brass chants his name whenever he enters the game.

Marfo - unsurprisingly got blocked when he tried to put the ball back up, but he went right back up with it instead of dribbling again and that is a great next step. Made all of his FTs today which is huge. Pulled down some good defensive rebounds. Continues to hustle for the ball which I love to see. Every time he and Goss are in the game together one is usually trying to get the ball to the other for an inside score. So far, the execution has been slightly off. The idea is right but sometimes there are too many defenders around one guy.

Bolden - had a great couple of assists. His court vision is very good. Has a good shooting stroke and knocked down both threes today. However, he committed a lot of fouls one of which was trying to defend a dunk by a Howard player towards the end of the game. I liked the effort on that play but it clearly drove Mojo crazy to send a good free throw shooting Howard team to the line when we were up by a lot. Also good for a couple of sloppy turnovers when bringing the ball up (freshman mistakes). Definitely see a ton of potential though. Will be a good player for us moving forward. Glad he got the playing time today.

Williams - his jumpers have been shot a bit short but I still see potential. I think he could be one of those development over four years success stories. He missed his other attempt on a drive to the hoop and although the ball didn't go in I thought the drive itself was nice. He's also a bit late in getting to the defender. Pulled down a nice rebound. Hopefully we can find time to give him some playing time here and there. 

Mitola - great to see him score his first points at GW. Appears to be a good shooter, however a lot left to be desired on the defensive end. A Howard player shot a three when he was guarding him and Mitola didn't even jump up to contest the shot. Still, very happy for him as a walk-on.

Thomas12/11/2016 1:42:27 PM

Maine Colonial,  the ESPN channel(ESPNU or ESPNews) which aired Howard's game against Maryland during the past week, showed parts of that link you posted. I know your link refers to the mother of a Howard player(Andoh) dying recently, I believe she died the day of or the day before Howard's game against Maryland after battling an illness over a period of time. Andoh still played in the Maryland game.

The segment I saw also showed that Howard signed the starting point guard from Hurley Sr's St.Anthony's team, they had some quotes from Hurley about that player. I looked it up and saw that he is a 3-star player who turned down offers from slightly bigger schools to play at Howard.

The MV12/11/2016 2:58:45 PM

Carl Elliott was the last and only player in school history to record a triple double.

Maine Colonial12/12/2016 2:06:25 PM

The Hatchet posted some game highlights that included some shots referenced above.  LINK

dmvpiranha12/12/2016 3:57:31 PM

Top 5 Plays:

#5: Goss block.

#4: Bolden to Hart in transition for the dunk.

#3: Roland finds Sina in the corner for 3, then Cavanaugh finds Sina for 3, then Hart finds Sina for 3.

#2: Cavanaugh pass to Sina in the corner for 3 and the foul.

#1: Cavanaugh alley-oop pass to Smith for the throwdown. 4:31:25 PM

thanks for posting those links guys 

Maine Colonial12/16/2016 3:03:02 PM

Episode Seven of The Undefeated features the GW-Howard game including two of JoRol's three pointers: LINK

The Dude12/16/2016 6:32:55 PM

That is a seriously well made documentary of their season. Looks as good as something you'd see on HBO. Who is making that?

GW Alum Abroad12/16/2016 6:45:47 PM

A DC school in the midst of a one-win season with so many injuries they may need to turn to intramural players to fill out the roster while leaving their highly-regarded seniors to wonder "what if"? As someone who lived through the 1988-89 season, I can honestly say to our Howard colleagues "I feel your pain."

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