off the schneid

Off the schneid

Dukes get first CAA win with victory over Hens

Staff Report
JMU sports:

Junior forward Denzel Bowles (Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam) and sophomore forward Julius Wells (Toledo, Ohio/Libbey) combined for 50 points to lead James Madison past Delaware 71-65 in a Colonial Athletic Association men’s basketball game Monday night at the Convocation Center.

JMU picked up its first league victory to improve to 1-2 in the CAA and 7-6 overall. UD dropped to 5-9 overall and 1-2 in the league.

Bowles, who played his fifth game since becoming eligible for JMU, posted his fourth consecutive 20-point, 10-rebound effort. He finished with 26 points, 10 boards, two assists, and one steal. He hit 12 of 21 field goals (57 percent) in 36 minutes.

Wells finished with 24 points, including four three-pointers, four rebounds, three assists, and two steals in a team-high 38 minutes. He made 10 of his 20 field-goal attempts in the game.

It was also a career night for JMU senior guard Pierre Curtis (Denver, Colo./East), who set the JMU career steals record with 146, breaking the previous mark of 145 held by David Dupont (145). The record came on a strip of UD point guard Jawan Carter with 17:30 left in the second half. Curtis also tied the JMU record for career starts of 104, held by Steve Stielper (1976-80). Curtis finished the night with eight points, three boards, two assists, and two steals.

Carter led the Blue Hens with a double-double with 18 points, a career-high 11 assists, and six rebounds. Alphonso Dawson posted 14 points, seven boards, and four steals. Adam Pegg chipped in 10 points.

In the first half, JMU used a 9-0 run to build an 11-point lead at 21-10 with eight minutes remaining. The Dukes still led by nine at 32-23 before the Blue Hens used a jumper and three free throws on a late foul to cut to 32-28 at the break. Bowles and Wells each had 10 points in the first half.

The Dukes used a quick 6-0 spurt in the second half to go up 41-32 with 16:38 remaining. The lead grew to double-figures with 14 minutes left and remained at least 10 points until a Pegg jumper with 5:20 remaining for a 60-51 score.

Delaware cut the margin to five at 64-59 with 2:24 left. A double-teamed jumper by Bowles was followed by a layup by Kelvin McNeil to make it 66-61. After misses by both teams, Curtis ran the shot clock down and drove the lane against a spread defense for a key three-point play and a 69-61 advantage.

Jamelle Hagins missed a layup and Bowles grabbed the rebound before then hitting one of two free throws.

Carter’s jumper in the paint made it 70-63 with 19 seconds left. Freshman Darren White (Danville, Va./Dan River) then hit one of two free throws and McNeil hit a layup at the buzzer for the 71-65 final.

JMU shot 49.2 percent for the game, highlighted by hitting 15 of 27 (55.6 percent) in the second half. Delaware shot 42.2 percent from the floor, 21.2 percent on threes. JMU held a 37-28 advantage in rebounds.

JMU will continue CAA play on Wednesday with a 7 p.m. game at Old Dominion.



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