GW MBB looks to sweep season series @ Davidson
By: Daniel Stettin
The George Washington Colonials (13-12, 5-7) head to Davidson, North Carolina Wednesday night to face the Davidson Wildcats (12-11, 5-7). GW defeated Davidson 73-69 on January 5th in the Smith Center. Tyler Cavanaugh led the Colonials that night with 20 points and 6 rebounds. Peyton Aldridge had 20 points and 9 rebounds for the Wildcats that night.
The Colonials are coming off a 76-70 victory homecoming victory over St. Bonaventure in which Cavanaugh and Jaren Sina combined for 55 points (Cavanaugh had a career high 33 while Sina had a career high 22). The Wildcats, meanwhile, are coming a 74-60 loss at VCU in what was just a 3 point game at the half. They shot just 47.6% from the line, making just 10 of their 21 free throw attempts.
Similar to St. Bonaventure, Davidson is a two man show led by Guard Jack Gibbs and Forward Peyton Aldridge. The duo combine for over half of Davidson’s points every night with both deadly from downtown (Gibbs is at 38.7% and Aldridge 41.5% from downtown). In the first matchup, Yuta Watanabe essentially shut down Gibbs the entire game before Gibbs hit a few shots in a row at the end of the game. Expect Yuta to shadow Gibbs the entire game. Aldridge is an inside-out threat that will matchup with Cavanaugh and expect the two to battle all night.
The x-factor for the Wildcats will be the play of Boston College transfer, Will Magarity. The 6-11, 240 pounds Magarity has really broken out the past four games, averaging 13.5 PPG and 6.5 RPG. When he is on, he plays similarly to Aldridge in that inside-out mold but in certain games (such as the VCU game where he didn’t score) teams have forced him to take difficult shots outside of the paint and that will be up to the Freshman bigs (Collin Smith, Arnaldo Toro, Kevin Marfo) to force him outside.
For the Colonials to win tonight, GW will need Yuta to play Gibbs with the same defensive intensity as in the first matchup. The Wildcats are a poor defensive team so I see deep threats such as Jordan Roland or Sina hitting multiple triples tonight which will open the paint for the GW bigs. Despite the scoring threats from Gibbs and Aldridge, I see GW sending Davidson to their 4th straight loss.