I was in the unique position of being able to write a live recap of the game today from my dad’s basement, enjoy:
The announcers opened up the broadcast by talking about “packed” the arena was this afternoon. UD is in the business of announcing a sellout this season when 11,000 come through the turnstiles, so I imagine this was read off a cue card. Well played, UD.
DURRELL is feeling himself early, gets fouled on his first three, then jabs this poor Wagner bastard for the second. Keep feeding him the ball until he cools off please.
Wagner hits the quintessential early 3 pointer at UD Arena from a young man named Joe Joe. Every team that has ever played basketball in UD arena in a competitive matchup has hit a 3 in the first 5 minutes of the game. I didn’t research this heavily so take my word for it.
Good sweet lord DURRELL is on fire, drops a couple more buckets and has 12 of Dayton’s first 14. He also had some choice words for the Wagner bench, as he sometimes does on a day like today.
I look up and UD has 20 points. I do math: DURRELL has 14 and Josh has 6. This is shocking to no one. Wagner scores a couple quick buckets to close to 20-9 and decide a full court press is a good idea, it’s not. Kostas breaks it and dishes to Trey, I am reminded he is on the floor and that other UD basketball-doers can score.
12 Minute TO: My Yuengling is empty. Reload.
Next possession Crutcher gets a quick steal and a bucket. Going up tempo isn’t working so well for Wagner.
Wagner can’t hit a damn thing, anything less than bloodbath will be a letdown. Trey scores again, he’s still on the floor. The Lee’s Chicken giveaway brings people of all ethnic backgrounds to their feet. X-man Williams hits a wide open three from the top of the key. Breath is held every time he fires one up, Wagner answers. I am informed UD already has 7 turnovers, I sigh.
Josh Cunningham hits a long ball. Personally, I would like if that was his last long ball of the season, but that’s just me, I’m old school. Flyers lead is 16, Wagner is still bad. Josh travels, 8 turnovers, I sigh again.
Matej gets a rebound and awkwardly lumbers his way down the floor, easily the most entertaining part of his team. Crosby dishes to Jordan Davis and another 3 makes it 35-16 good guys. The announcers are talking about UD’s game plan against Wagner without talking about how bad Wagner is at basketball, interesting.
The kid John Crosby makes a nice move to the bucket and gets a scoop to go for an and-1. It’s getting out of hand with 2:30 to go in the first. Grant has the “We’re playing Wagner” lineup on the floor of Crosby, Czechie, Trey, Crutcher and Kostas.
The announcers talk about how quiet the Arena is right before Kostas throws down the most exciting play of the season on an alley-oop from Jalen Crutcher. A play so exciting my dad wakes up from his nap. I have a feeling it will be all downhill from here.
Comments from dad on the couch: “About time we got a JV team in here that we could beat.” He has watched 45 seconds of the game; this comment is 100% correct. Amazing.
Halftime stats: Wagner can’t shoot for shit, 7-25 (28%) from the field, 3-11 from downtown, 14 turnovers. No one has more than 6, woof.
UD: Josh has 9 on 4-8 shooting, DURRELL sat for the majority of the last 8 minutes after scoring 14. UD is 16-29 (55%) from the field, 6-14 from downtown, 8 turnovers and outrebounding Wagner. That’s certainly how you lead at half against a lesser foe. If you had things to do on Saturday, chances are you didn’t stick around for the second with the Flyers leading 43-21.
John Crosby has a vintage sequence: gets the ball taken from him and then commits a foul on a lay-in on the other end. Hop in the comments if you would like to wager it’ll be the last time this season.
The first four minutes put the Arena further to sleep, Wagner kinda wins it, I guess, outscoring UD 5-3. Crosby makes an attempt to wake up the masses with a cute little alley-oop to Josh with 15 minutes to go.
John Crosby gets the ball taken off his hands at the point…again. An easy lay-in on the other end and Wagner cuts it to 12. Shortly after, Jordan would drop in another corner 3, back to 15. A minute later he would do it again on a fast break. Dude shoots it whenever, I respect the hell out of it.
NBCSN has informed me Dayton is on a 13-3 run over the last 3 minutes, sometimes those sneak up on you. Unrelated, my Yuengling is empty again. Reload.
30 seconds later Wagner scores 8 straight points. College basketball is the worst.
The rest of this game will be a test in the Flyers ability to just hold Wagner off, but also will test my ability to not actually fall asleep whilst watching a game. After a lot of fouling, UD keeps the lead at 17 – then Wagner cuts it back to 11, so it’s been.
Wagner objectively outplaying UD into the 4-minute TO. UD won’t lose this game, but UD won’t make it easy on any of you. This is the fate you have chosen by watching this display of basketball. No wins are easy.
DURRELL picks up his fifth foul on a charge, can’t make this shit up. Wagner gets what feels like their 10th easy steal of the game against (guess who!?!?) John Crosby, and buttholes tighten throughout UD Arena with the Flyers up 6. Crosby answers with a flailing drive through the lane that nets him two FTs.
With a minute left and UD up 10, nothing noteworthy will happen from this point forward, so while it wraps up, here’s my quick thoughts (redundant or not):
Josh didn’t get the ball enough, again.
With the Flyers leading at 22 going into the half, and then facing the absolutely ridiculous scenario of being up 6 (!!) with 2 minutes left, I’m not sure how you can look at our head coach and be confident with his game management. He hasn’t had a single answer in any contest this season and the Wagner game was no different. I am sorry if this is harsh news for some. It’s downright concerning, I’m not sure how many times we’ll need to say this before something changes. What if it never does? Christ, it might never change.
Josh Cunningham throws down a slam dunk while I finish my thoughts, imagine that.
Red Scare starts chanting “This is our house” please don’t embarrass us, guys. Jesus. It’s Wagner.
Final score was 79-67, back to thoughts:
Jordan Davis is a great asset for this team, he needs more opportunities to assert himself (hisself).
Wagner is bad at basketball.
Trey Landers once again put together a solid effort, staying on the court for 34 minutes to make up for DURRELL’s foul trouble, and scoring 14 points on 10 free throws. His greatest strength is, well, his strength. You have to like his aggressiveness around the hoop, but I do wonder why it disappears at times.
John Crosby did some good things, he did some bad things. He’s still capable of making a highlight reel assist and then getting the ball taken directly off his hands. Basically he’s the Jay Cutler of college basketball.
The non-conference schedule has mercifully come to an end and UD will have a nice full week off to do Christmas things. While you’re here at the bottom of my post, let’s reflect on the 6 UD wins:
3 MAC Teams, Tennessee Tech, Georgia State and Wagner.
I weep for the future.
Regroup, regather yourself and please do not try to rationalize your fandom before December 30th. The Flyers will return to action in my homeland of Pittsburgh against the Duquesne Dukes next Saturday. While I understand not being so LOWD right now, please return to LOWD by then.
The LOWD ambassador of Chicago, Sully has spent his life tirelessly watching UD hoops. Welcomer of all takes, hot and cold.