Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving Eve from Fordham

It's a wrap. Princeton 73, Fordham 61. The Tigers improve to 2-2 on the season and have their first back-to-back road wins since Nov. 22 and 28, 2006.

:32.4, Princeton 71, Fordham 58
As Max Huc makes two free throws to give Princeton 70 points for the first time since Mar. 7, 2008 against Columbia (75), John Comfort and Bobby Foley enter the game. The Tigers have now used all 12 dressed players.

2:19, Princeton 69, Fordham 52
Max Huc enters the game for the Tigers, making it 10 Princeton players in the box score tonight.

3:00, Princeton 67, Fordham 51
Kareem Maddox gives the Tigers a 16-point lead, and two new Tigers are in double-figures for the first time this season. Pawel Buczak has 11 and Nick Lake has 12, his most since three double-digit games late last season.

11:15, Princeton 51, Fordham 39
Davis is there, canning another three-pointer to give him 11 on the night for four straight double-digit scoring games to start his career.

12:20, Princeton 48, Fordham 39
Doug Davis just might get to double-digits yet. He hit a three to restore a nine-point lead for the Tigers, his first points of the half. Davis now has eight points tonight.

13:13, Princeton 45, Fordham 37
Pawel Buczak drops in another layup to make him the first Tiger tonight to reach double-digits with 11. That's a new career high for the junior, who matched his previous career best with six against Army last Sunday.

16:02, Princeton 43, Fordham 28
It's a 10-0 run for the Tigers as Nick Lake makes his second three of the game. That brings on a timeout by Fordham coach Whittenburg.

17:56, Princeton 36, Fordham 28
Make that six Tigers to hit a three tonight as Patrick Saunders joins the club.

1 minute until 2nd half
Looking up at the banners around Rose Hill Gym, the last time Fordham went to the NCAA Tournament was 1992. It was a tough draw for the 14th-seeded Rams, who had to play third-seeded UMass in Worcester, Mass. Fordham lost 85-58 to a Minutemen team that was coached by John Calipari, who last year led Memphis to the national final, but didn't yet have the second-most famous UMass basketball alum (after Julius Erving), Marcus Camby. Though both teams are in the Atlantic 10 now, they weren't then. Fordham was in the Patriot League at the time.

The stat of the half: Shooting percentage. Princeton's 50 percent from the field has helped the Tigers to a 7-point lead, but Fordham has eight offensive rebounds to Princeton's two.

0:00, Princeton 33, Fordham 26
Princeton can't get off a shot to end the half, but that came after Fordham missed the front end of a 1-and-1 and the Tigers got the rebound. Even with the 12-0 run, Princeton still does have a seven-point lead at the break.

0:40, Princeton 33, Fordham 26
Pawel Buczak ends a 5 1/2-minute drought for the Tigers with a layup.

3:30, Princeton 31, Fordham 26
The run becomes 12-0 after a three-pointer, and the Tigers have come up empty both on the shot and on the rebound on three straight trips down the floor. The last media timeout of the half comes as Fordham gets whistled for its fourth foul of the half.

4:16, Princeton 31, Fordham 23
Make that four basket-plus-foul chances for Fordham, as Nick Lake is whistled. Fordham can't get the free throw, though, so the run stays at 9-0. The Tigers have six fouls, but they are spread between six players.

4:38, Princeton 31, Fordham 21
A 7-0 run for Fordham as Princeton allows the Rams their third and-one of the game, this foul on Dan Mavraides, followed by a long two. Sydney Johnson calls timeout.

6:15, Princeton 31, Fordham 14
Back to back unfortunate instances for a couple Princeton players, as Pawel Buczak saw his good fortune from beyond the arc cease temporarily, missing one from the top of the key, and Nick Lake had a basketball thrown hard off his back by a Fordham player and out of bounds. Tough way to get a possession.

7:30, Princeton 29, Fordham 14
Fordham's Trey Blue becomes the first Brewster Academy alum to play in tonight's game, as Princeton's Max Huc also spent a year at the prep school, which is located in Wolfeboro, N.H., near the Maine border about halfway up the state.

7:56, Princeton 27, Fordham 13
Though the Tigers ahead on the scoreboard, they're also leading in fouls, 4-2. They've been spread evenly, as Pawel Buczak just picked up his first. Fordham will have an and-one opportunity when play resumes.

9:57, Princeton 25, Fordham 11
Add Dan Mavraides to the three party. That's five for the Tigers.

10:51, Princeton 22, Fordham 8
A foul on Marcus Schroeder brings on the second media timeout, one play after Nick Lake found Zach Finley for an easy layup off a nice pass. If you're wearing orange, you'd find company in the section behind the Princeton bench. TigerBlog counts about 10 instances of the color on a quick glance.

11:52, Princeton 20, Fordham 8
It's become a three-fest for Princeton as Jason Briggs, Nick Lake, Pawel Buczak and Doug Davis have all dropped one each. Fordham calls timeout.

13:14, Princeton 14, Fordham 8
Kareem Maddox steals, gets a breakaway and throws down another slam.

15:00, Princeton 12, Fordham 6
Swish, swish: Doug Davis hits a pair of free throws to give him five points. He's halfway to his fourth straight double-digit scoring game to start his career.

15:00, first media timeout, Princeton 10, Fordham 6
Fordham coach Dereck Whittenburg and Princeton's Sydney Johnson, both of whom are busy instructing their teams during the timeout at the moment, have been parts of very memorable NCAA Tournament games. Whittenburg threw the long pass to Lorenzo Charles for the bucket that won the 1983 NCAA title, and Sydney Johnson took part in the 43-41 Princeton win over UCLA in the first round of the 1996 tourney.

16:30 left in the half: Princeton 10, Fordham 4
Big men shooting threes, dunks... The Tigers are putting on quite a show early, as the backboard quivered from Kareem Maddox's slam. He also threw one down against Maine last week.

17 minutes left in the half
The Princeton offense says that everyone should be able to pass and shoot, but even a 6-10 post player? Sure enough. Pawel Buczak has dropped a three for the second straight game. A three against Army Sunday was the junior's first of his career.

A youngster wearing a San Diego Padres shirt-jersey is seated two seats away from TigerBlog here on press row at Rose Hill Gym. Right team, wrong player. The kid's shirt carries the #30 of Greg Maddux, not either of the two Princeton basketball alumni on the team, Chris Young or Will Venable.

4 minutes to tip
The Tigers are running layup lines while a Ram mascot roams the baseline. Though TigerBlog would assume that many Fordham students would have gone home for Thanksgiving by now, the Ram mascot is accompanied by about a dozen Fordham cheerleaders. The crowd, however, looks to be entirely non-student.

8 minutes to tip
TigerBlog was relieved that it took only 2 1/2 hours on Thanksgiving Eve to get from Jadwin Gym to the middle of the Bronx, and it looks like a fair number of fans for the small size of the gym have made it out, too. Capacity is listed as 3,200, but the building looks a lot like Princeton's Hobey Baker Rink. Fitting 3,200 people inside either facility would be a squeeze, but it sure would be loud.

13 minutes to tip
Princeton will be starting the same five -- Jason Briggs, Pawel Buczak, Patrick Saunders, Kareem Maddox and Doug Davis -- as head coach Sydney Johnson has the first three games. Princeton hasn't started the same five that many games in a row since a nine-game stretch last season that continued through Feb. 15, 2008.

20 minutes to tip
TigerBlog is courtside at Rose Hill Arena, the oldest actively used arena in Division I (1925), for tonight's men's basketball game between the Princeton Tigers and the Fordham Rams. Throughout the game, TigerBlog will be updating with in-game notes and facts as the game goes forward. For play-by-play, listen to John Sadak on the WPRB 103.3 broadcast and follow Live Stats.

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