JMU stifles Spiders en route to 51-46 men’s basketball win

jmu logoJames Madison scored 40 points in the paint and played staunch defense en route to a 51-46 men’s basketball win over in-state rival Richmond on Sunday afternoon at the JMU Convocation Center.

The Dukes (6-2) used a complete defensive effort to limit the Spiders (3-4) to a 36.4 percent (16-of-44) shooting from the field, yielding the fourth-lowest point total of any JMU team under Head Coach Matt Brady. There were 15 lead changes and six ties in a game that neither team led by more than five points at any point.

Freshman forward Hari Hall (Jacksonville, Fla./Jean-Ribault) led the scoring for JMU with 12 points on 6-of-10 shooting while sophomore forward Yohanny Dalembert (Port-au-Prince, Haiti/Lower Merion (Pa.)) joined him in double digits with 10. Sophomore guard Jackson Kent (High Point, N.C./High Point Christian) pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds to set a new career record while adding nine points. Junior guard Andre Nation (Plant City, Fla./Faith Baptist Christian) also recorded game- and season-high totals of four assists and four steals in the triumph.

Madison, which improved to 6-1 on its home court this year, finished the game at 39 percent shooting (22-of-57) and dominated the glass 39-27, including a 15-3 advantage on the offensive end that resulted in JMU scoring 12 points to Richmond’s three. The Spiders were paced by Kendall Anthony, who scored a game-best 16 points, but he was limited to just three points in the second half.

Neither team mustered big runs in the first half but, with JMU down 16-15, Hall and Kent had back-to-back buckets 33 seconds apart to give the Dukes a 20-16 lead, their largest of the stanza, with 6:09 remaining. Anthony gave Richmond a brief 24-22 lead with 1:32 to go but a Hall alley-oop dunk with 66 seconds left tied the game at 24-24 heading to the break.

JMU opened the second half with four quick points but ur answered back with a 5-0 run to take a 29-28 lead with 17:10 left in regulation. Richmond and JMU traded baskets for much of the next 10 minutes and, with the Spiders ahead 41-40, layups by Dalembert and Kent gave JMU a 44-41 advantage with 4:31 to go. ShawnDre’ Jones came right back with a trey to knot things up at 44-44 heading to the final media timeout.

Dalembert gave JMU a 46-44 lead with 2:30 to go and there would be no more scoring until the final minute when Nation knocked down a step-back jumper with 40.9 seconds to go, giving the Dukes a 48-44 lead. Trey Davis hit a pair of free throws with 20.3 seconds left, but Kent also knocked down both of his from the stripe a few seconds later to secure the win.

The Dukes will take a short break for final exams and return to action on Saturday, Dec. 13, when they hit the road for a 5 p.m. matchup at East Carolina. That game will be broadcast on ESPN3.com or the Watch ESPN app and can be heard on the JMU/nTelos Wireless Broadcast Network.

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