In the last week, the No. 23 Emory men’s basketball team had its fair share of ups and downs. On Nov. 28, they lost their second consecutive game to Sewanee: The University of the South (Tenn.), but rebounded massively on Dec. 1, winning 116-77 over Trinity University (Texas).
Sewanee improved to a season record of 7-0 by beating Emory 83-70. In the first half, Emory outscored their opponent 45-41. However, the second half proved decisive for Sewanee, which started out the half on a 10-1 run to put them up by five points within only two minutes and 26 seconds. Ultimately, Emory could not inch closer than four points during the rest of the half, as the Eagles shot only 28.1 percent while allowing Sewanee to shoot 54.1 percent from the field in the second half.
Head Coach Jason Zimmerman attributed the Eagles’ poor shooting to the team’s desperation for a victory.
“We wanted to win so bad that we got a little anxious and started taking bad shots,” Zimmerman said.
Sophomore point guard Romin Williams led Emory with 16 points while classmates forward Lawrence Rowley and guard Matt Schner each totaled a dozen points during the game.
Emory bounced back on Saturday, beating Trinity to push the Eagles’ season record to 5-2. The Eagles set a program record for most points in a game with 116.
In addition to the point record, Emory also set a program record for three-point field goals made in a single game with 19, improving on the program record of 18 that Emory converted against Sewanee (Dec. 6, 2005) and against Keuka College (N.Y.) earlier this season.
“We cut harder, played smarter and shared the ball, as evidenced by our 29 assists,” Zimmerman said.
For the ninth time in school history, three players totaled 20 or more points in a single game, with sophomore guard Luke Morrison leading the way with 23 points (20 of which were scored in the second half), as he shot 7 of 8 from the floor and 5 of 5 from three-point range throughout the the game. Sophomore forward Matt Davet also eclipsed the 20-point threshold, pouring in 21 points, his third outing of 20-plus points this season. Leading scorer Williams rounded out the trio with 20 points, bringing his scoring average up to 18.1 points per game for the season.
Williams attributed the team’s offensive success in this game to its emphasis on teamwork.
“We just wanted to come out and get everyone involved within our offense,” Williams said. “[Zimmerman] did a great job of putting guys in positions to score, and consequently, we had 29 assists. Nothing but good things can happen when that occurs, and that led to our offensive outbreak.”
Overall, Emory made a season-best 56 percent (42 out of 75) of its field goal attempts. In the second half, the Eagles seemingly could not miss as they shot a virtually unheard-of 63.9 percent (23-of-36) from the field, enabling them to score 65 points in the second half alone.
The Eagles continue a five-game home stand on Dec. 5 when they play host to LaGrange College (Ga.), scheduled for a 7 p.m. tip-off.