Feb 1, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — Saint Augustine’s University continues to roll.
Senior guard Tyquan Stroman (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) scored a career-high 23 points as the Falcons downed Livingstone College 85-76 in a CIAA men's basketball contest at Emery Gymnasium on Saturday, Jan. 30, 2013.
The win was the fifth straight for the Falcons, who improved to 14-6 overall, 7-3 in the CIAA and 4-0 in the Southern Division. The Falcons, picked to finish last in the division, are the Southern Division leaders. Livingstone fell to 14-5 overall, 6-4 in the CIAA and 2-2 in the Southern Division.
“It is good to see us get better,” said St. Aug Head Coach Lonnie Blow, Jr., who won his 60th game as Falcons coach. “I think we still have some improving to do. It is a good thing when you can learn from your mistakes and win.”
Stroman made seven of 10 shots from the floor including a perfect 3 of 3 from the three-point line in leading the Falcons to victory. Stroman didn’t miss from the free throw line, either, making 6 of 6 from the charity stripe. The 6-6 guard also led the Falcons in rebounding with nine as the CIAA’s top rebounding team pounded Livingstone on the glass 36-24.
Stroman scored 12 first-half points on 4 of 6 shooting including 2 of 2 from three-point distance to help the Falcons take a commanding 41-23 halftime lead. The Falcons limited the Blue Bears to 35 percent shooting in the half.
“He is settling in a little bit,” Blow said about Stroman. “When he lets the game come to him, he does a really nice job. He is rebounding the ball well, too. He is a good player when he plays within himself and does the little things.”
Stroman led four Falcons in double figures. The trio of senior guards Percy Woods (Washington, D.C.), Nick Chamblee (Hampton, Va.) and sophomore center Jon Crawley (Richmond, Va.) each added 12 points for the Falcons, who shot 58 percent. This was the second straight game that the Falcons shot over 50 percent. They shot 62 percent in a big win over crosstown rival Shaw on Saturday.
“The offense is starting to evolve,” Blow said. “Guys are starting to understand where the shots are coming from in our offense. We are executing better, a lot better than early in the season. It is good to see us play together.”
For Crawley, this is his fourth game in a row in double figures coming off the bench. Junior guard Joel Kindred (Raleigh, N.C.) scored nine points and senior guard/forward Jon Kindred (Raleigh, N.C.) added six points as reserves as the Falcons bench outscored the Blue Bears bench 31-24. Starter Chris Johnson (Hampton, Va.), a junior redshirt forward, scored seven points.
The Falcons led the entire game. They started pulling away late in the first half, opening a 25-13 lead with five minutes left before halftime. The lead stretched to 18 points when the teams went into the locker rooms at the break.
The Falcons continued to coast in the second half. Their lead was 25 points at 54-29 on Stroman’s layup.
With 2:16 left, Woods weaved through the Livingstone defense for a layup which made the score 77-59 Falcons. The Blue Bears made a late run to make the score respectable but the outcome was never in doubt.
Tyler Johnson led Livingstone with 20 points and Mark Thomas added 17 points. The Falcons, ranked eighth in NCAA Division II in field-goal percentage defense, held Livingstone to 41 percent shooting for the game. The Blue Bears shot better (46 percent) in the second half, but the Falcons did too, making 62 percent of its shots to keep a double-digit lead until the final two minutes.
After playing six out of seven games at home including five in a row in January, the Falcons will encounter three road contests in the next two weeks, starting with Fayetteville State University in a televised contest on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 at 4 p.m. The Falcons were 4-2 at Emery Gymnasium on campus this month, and are anticipating the same type of success on the road in February. But teams will be gunning for the Falcons now that they are leading the division.
"Being in first place is good, but it is important to understand that teams are gunning for us now," Blow said. "It will be a different mindset when they play us again.. All games are tough in this conference but road games are really, really tough."