Good Vermont Defense or Bad Maine Offense?
One game removed from their 40 point drubbing over Binghamton, Vermont train kept rolling, this time humiliating Maine by 35 points in a 65-30 blowout win. Maine actually played quite well for about four minutes, as they raced out to an early 6-0 lead – and then it all came tumbling down. Vermont took full control of the game from that point on, as they went on a 44-7 run and never put the game in doubt.
With yesterday’s win over Maine, the Catamounts average margin of victory in their last three games now sits at an astonishing 30.3 points. At the end of the day all that really matters is the win itself, but blowing teams out like this is a huge confidence booster for a program and right now the Cats are looking mighty unstoppable.
Game two between these two conference foes is scheduled for 1pm this afternoon. The Catamounts are a ridiculous 18-point favorites, though considering the tear they’ve been on as of late and that could even be considered too low. Let’s breakdown game one.
Telling Stats and Notes – Vermont Catamounts
Ryan Davis – 15 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist, 2 fouls, 6-10 shooting
Stef Smith – 14 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 fouls, 5-12 shooting
Team – 65 points, 24-57 FG, 7-28 3PT, 42 rebounds, 14 assists, 14 turnovers
Davis once again paced the team with 15 points. It wasn’t his best statistical performance, but when you’re blowing the roof of a team there isn’t a need to make a play every trip down the court. Smith continues to find his rhythm offensively, but his playmaking skills and contributions on both ends of the court were on display in this one, as he also added two steals to his impressive statline.
Although Davis and Smith were the only Catamounts to reach the double-figure mark, 11 Vermont players would find the back of the net in this one. Bailey Patella and Robin Duncan had two of the more unique statlines as well. Patella finished with 4 rebounds and 4 steals, while Duncan channeled his inner Brian Voelkel, as he went off for 9 rebounds, 9 assists, 1 block and 1 steal. Both of those statlines really define their style of play and considering that Vermont’s bench had been struggling early on, it was great to see them both excel in their areas of expertise.
Telling Stats and Notes – Maine Black Bears
Vilgot Larsson – 7 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 fouls, 3-5 shooting
Solomon Iluyomade – 7 points, 10 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 fouls, 2-5 shooting
Team – 30 points, 12-51 FG, 1-15 3PT, 35 rebounds, 6 assists, 21 turnovers
*Sad trombone. Oof. We knew Maine’s offense was bad, but producing only 12 points in a half is downright embarrassing. Not a single player scored in double-figures and only three players in total would score at least 5 points. It kills me to see a team shoot so poorly, so I went ahead and signed up the entire Maine basketball team for Ernie Duncan’s shooting camp. Go easy on them Ernie.
In all seriousness, while Maine was atrocious from the floor all afternoon, they likely won’t be as bad in game two. Not expecting a complete flip of the switch, but 23.5% from the field is an outlier for the majority of NCAA teams. The Catamounts did an excellent job of eliminating Stephane Ingo’s impact all day. Ingo, who had recorded a double-double in four straight games and was most recently coming off a six block performance, was completely held in check. The AE PoY scarlet finished with 0 points, 5 rebounds and 2 blocks, while dealing with foul trouble (4). If Maine is going to have any shot against the Cats in today’s match-up they’ll need to find a better way to get Ingo more involved.