Tony Shaver got a technical foul yesterday. Tony Shaver. Nicest man in the Quad Cities (Croaker, Toano, Norge, and Lightfoot, if you were wondering). Got a technical. Our sources tell us that Shaver either a) dropped a "Gosh" at an inappropriate moment, or b) couldn't control his mustache, which is admittedly a foul-mouthed beast, though it blushes every time it goes out for drinks with Blaine Taylor's lipjacket.
More importantly, Hofstra had fresh legs and Charles Jenkins. Both of those things took a telling toll on the Wrens in the second half of last night's CAA quarterfinals. W&M took a two-point lead into the break after holding Jenkins to 5 points. (No team in the 8 games played thus far in the tournament has led by more than a pair of points at halftime - the patrons are getting more than their money's worth.) But the Dutchpride dominated the last frame, burying the Wrens by 18 and holding Quinn McDowell to only 6 points on as many shots. As I tweeted last night, this is my favorite 10-22 team ever. With only Marcus Kitts graduating, we're eagerly anticipating the 2011-12 Wrens.
While the Tribe's gone home to feed Tim Rusthoven 4 meals a day for the next 8 months, the top 4 seeds remain in Richmond for what promises to be an awesome weekend. I'm tired of the Pulp Fiction theme, so we'll just pick the games straight up. We're thisclose to making #3bids4caa a reality, needing wins by VCU and Hofstra today. G:TB thinks we'll get halfway there.
(4) VCU vs. (1) George Mason
There's every reason to believe that this'll be a dandy. VCU faltered down the stretch, but matched Mason at 12-2 in the conference just a few short weeks ago. The Rams are a terrific defensive team, with multiple options on offense and a seasoned roster. Mason's won 16 in a row, and swamped Georgia State under a 42-9 run yesterday. The Patriots also defend aggressively and have even more diversity on the scoring end. I'd love to pick VCU, but I can't see it. Mason is as good a CAA team as I can remember. One thing I feel comfortable in saying is that the atmosphere in the Coliseum this afternoon will be frenzied.
(3) Hofstra vs. (2) ODU
Here's where we're pinning our three-bid hopes. ODU's deeper and stronger than Hofstra, plays better defense, and has a substantial edge in coaching experience. All Hofstra has is the best player on the court. Sometimes a transcendent player makes all the difference. We're saying today is one of those times, as Charles Jenkins finds a way against the physical, formidable Monarchs.
And it's aliiiiiiive.