Dec. 21, 1999
Clemson vs. George Washington Littlejohn Coliseum (11,020) Wednesday, December 22, 1999 (7:00 PM)
Clemson Personnel Update
Chucky Gilmore– Starting forward who has missed the last threegames due to a concussion suffered in practice on December 9.Should return for George Washington. Dustin Braddick– Startingforward had surgery to correct various problems with his rightfoot. Will be out three to four weeks.
Clemson guard Will Solomon has scored at least 20 points fivestraight games, longest streak by a Clemson player since HoraceGrant had six consecutive 20-point scoring games in 1986-87.Solomon has has averaged 26.8 points a game over his last fivegames. Wednesday’s game promises to be quite a matchup with Solomonand his ACC best 22.0 scoring average going against SirValientBrown and his 27.0 average that leads the Atlantic 10. It will be amatchup of two of the top 15 scorers in the nation, the highestscoring opposing players since Butch Zatezalo of Clemson faced PeteMaravich of LSU in Littlejohn Coliseum in on 12-7-68. Clemson hasnot played George Washington since the 1958-59 season. GW has an11-2 lead in the series. GW Coach Tom Penders is 1-0 againstClemson. His Texas team defeated Clemson in the Sun Bowl Carnivalin El Paso in 1990-91. Clemson has out-rebounded 9 of its 10opponents this year and ranks first in the ACC in rebounding.Clemson is third in the ACC in scoring defense (61.5).
Series Record: George Washington leads 2-11at Clemson: George Washington leads 4-1at Littlejohn: First meetingat G.W.: George Washington leads 5-1Last Meeing: George Washington 72-53 in 1958-59
Upcoming Clemson Schedule:
Clemson 64, Winthrop 59
Clemson won its second consecutive game on December 18, a 64-59 win over Winthrop. Will Solomon scored 22 points, including five three-point goals, while Adam Allenspach added a double-double (14 pts and 10 rebounds).
The Tigers offset the shooting of Winthrop backcourt Tyson Waterman and Roger Toxey. That duo combined for 27 points on nine three-point goals in the first half. But, Clemson’s defense held them to just three second-half field goals.
The game started off as a scoring binge. Both teams made at least 7 of its first 10 shots and 9-14 from the field. Andrius Jurkunas had six assists on Clemson’ first seven field goals in just nine minutes, establishing a career high in that category for the Tiger senior. Solomon and Edward Scott connected on six three-point goals in the first half and the score was tied 37-37 at intermission.
Both team’s defenses stiffened in the second half. Clemson was just 7-22 from the field, but Winthrop made just 7-24. Coach Larry Shyatt put Will Solomon on Waterman and the Eagle senior scored just three foul shots and was 0-6 from the field in the second half.
Clemson had a 59-50 lead with 4:28 left on two free throws by Adam Allenspach. Winthrop came back and cut the lead to 61-59. But, the Tigers shutout Winthrop the rest of the way and Andrius Jurkunas made two free throws with 2.9 seconds left to ice the game.
Clemson made just 39 percent of its shots for the game, but made 73 percent from the line. After making 54 percent from the field in the first half, Winthrop made just 29 percent in the second half and ended the game with a 42 percent mark. Clemson won the rebound battle for the ninth time in 10 games, 33-30. The Tigers committed just 11 turnovers, a big improvement from 25 turnovers against South Carolina.
Clemson vs. George Washington Series George Washington owns a commanding 11-2 advantage in the series with Clemson. However, the two teams have not met since the 1958-59 season. Many of the games took place in the 1940s when both teams were in the Southern Conference.
George Washington won the last meeting in the 1958-59 season at the Carrousel Classic in Charlotte by a 72-53 score. Clemson’s last victory took place at Clemson in the 1951-52 season, a 80-65 win. But, George Washington got revenge in the Southern Conference Tournament, 78-65. That would be Clemson’s final Southern Conference Tournament game in history.
The two teams met early in the 1938-39 season and George Washington defeated Clemson 47-44. That year ended as on of Clemson’s best ever, as the Tigers won the Southern Conference Tournament behind Banks McFadden.
George Washington won the first eight games of the series, a streak that was ended by Clemson at George Washington in 1950-51 by a 82-76 count.
Matchup of High Scoring Guards Wednesday night’s game between Clemson and George Washington promises to be entertaining for many reasons. One will be the matchup at guard between George Washington’s SirValient Brown and Clemson’s Will Solomon. Brown ranks second in the nation in scoring average and is coming off a 42-point game against Siena. Solomon is 13th in the nation in scoring with a 22.0 average and has had five consecutive games of at least 20 points, longest streak of its kind since Horace Grant had six straight 20-point games in 1986-87.
Solomon has the higher field goal percentage (.401) and higher three-point percentage (.360), but Brown has the higher average (27.0) and better free throw percentage (.850). Solomon also has more assists (25 to 11), but Brown has more steals (23 to 16).
This will be the most intriguing matchup of high scoring guards at Littlejohn Coliseum since December 7, 1968 when LSU and Pete Maravich came to Clemson. The Tigers countered with Butch Zatezalo, who would go on to become Clemson’s all-time leading scorer (a record Elden Campbell has since broken).
The game was just the second contest of the season for both teams, so there were no NCAA scoring stats heading into the game, however, both ended the year in the top 15 in the country in scoring. Maravich ended the year first, his second of three NCAA scoring titles, with a 44.2 scoring average. Zatezalo ended the year with a 25.8 scoring average, 14th best in the nation.
In that game at Clemson in 1968, Maravich scored 38 points, but he made just 10-32 from the field and had 10 turnovers. He did make 18-22 free throws in the game, then an LSU record. Zatezalo scored 16 points, but was just 4-12 from the field. The following year the two teams met in Charlotte. Maravich made 22-30 shots from the field and scored 49 points, a Charlotte Coliseum record, breaking the mark held by Bill Bradley of Princeton (45).
Another Iturbe Comes to Littlejohn For the first time in two years, an Iturbe will be appearing at Littlejohn Coliseum on Wednesday night. This Iturbe will not be playing for Clemson, however. George Washington starting forward Antxon Iturbe is the brother of former Clemson starting forward Iker Iturbe.
Iker played for the Tigers from 1994-95 through 1997-98. He graduated in the spring of 1998 with another year of eligibility, but opted to play professionally in Spain. For his Clemson career he played 91 games, 60 as a starter. He averaged 6.1 points and 3.5 rebounds per game. He also accumulated 176 assists, one of the highest totals in Clemson history by a forward. He started exactly 20 games each year on three Clemson postseason tournament teams, including the 1996-97 club that advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16.
Brother Antxon is a junior on George Washington’s team. Like Iker, Antxon is known for his all-around abilities as a passer and rebounder. He has started every game this year and has averaged 4.2 points per game, but has shot 54.5 percent from the field. He has collected 5.4 rebounds per game and is second on the team in offensive rebounds with 25.
This will not be Antxon’s first trip to Clemson. He visited his brother often during Iker’s career and attended games at Clemson.
Former Clemson Coach to be Honored Former Clemson Coach Bill Foster will be inducted in the Atlanta Tipoff Club Winningest Coaches Club on Monday night, January 10 at the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta. Foster will be inducted along with Gary Colson, a former mentor of current Clemson Head Coach Larry Shyatt at New Mexico. Both Foster and Colson will be on hand at Clemson for the Wake Forest game on Sunday, January 9th.
Foster is second in Clemson history in winning percentage and total victories. He is second to Rick Barnes in percentage and second to Cliff Ellis in total wins. He had a 156-106 record in his nine seasons (1975-84) at Clemson. He led Clemson to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament in 1980, still the greatest NCAA Tournament run in school history. The Tigers won a record six games over Top 20 teams that year. That includes Clemson’s only victory in history over the #1 team, a 87-82 overtime victory against Duke.
Tigers Hope to Hold Opponents Under 60 Points You hear coaches talk about wanting to hold teams to under 60 points in a game. That usually means your defense has had a good night.
That is always a goal for Larry Shyatt’s teams and you can see why. In his two years as Clemson head coach, the Tigers are 16-2 when holding the opposition to 60 points or less. That includes a 5-1 record this year and an 11-1 mark last year.
This year’s only Clemson loss when holding the opposition to under 60 was a 53-35 loss to Oregon State at the BiLo Center, a game in which Clemson shot just 28.6 percent from the field. Clemson’s only loss last year when holding the opposition to 60 or less was against Michigan, when the Wolverines defeated Clemson early in the season by a 59-56 score.
The 60 point barrier was important in the NIT Championship game against California last year. The Bears scored a three-point play on their last possession, giving California a 61-60 victory. Had Clemson held on that last possession, California would have scored less than 60 and the Tigers would have been NIT Champs.
This will be a challenge against George Washington. Tom Penders team averaged 77 points per game and features the second leading scorer in the nation SirValient Brown.
Jurkunas Contributing in Many Ways Andrius Jurkunas has been a key to Clemson’s last two victories. He has been a key all season from a leadership standpoint. It has carried over on the court, as Clemson is 4-2 in games he has played and 1-3 when he has not been able to participate.
Although he is certainly limited offensively by a broken right (shooting) thumb, he has had an impact in Clemson’s last two victories. In that time he has led Clemson in assists with 10. He had a career high six assists against Winthrop. He also made a pair of three-point goals in that game and hit 2-2 free throws with 2.9 seconds left to ice the game.
In the win over South Carolina, Jurkunas scored just two points, but it was an important tip-in down the stretch. He also had seven rebounds and four assists in his 19 minutes.
Jurkunas will have to fight off the pain from his broken thumb another couple of weeks until it heals. Until then he will do whatever he can to help the Tigers gain victory.
Braddick Has Surgery The pain was just too great for sophomore forward Dustin Braddick. He had surgery to clean up a number of problems with his right ankle on Sunday, December 19th. The surgery lasted nearly an hour and a half, but was termed successful.
Now, Braddick will be on crutches for a while and miss games over the next three weeks at least. Braddick has been Clemson’s top passer this year, leading the team in assists with 27, even though he has missed all but 12 minutes over the last two games due to his ankle problems. He was also fifth in the ACC in rebounding and Clemson’s top rebounder until the last two games. He has averaged 6.3 rebounds for the season, but was at 7.7 rebounds a game for his first eight games of the year when he was semi-healthy.
Nagys Getting to Foul Line Freshman Tomas Nagys will inherit much of the playing time vacated by Dustin Braddick’s ankle surgery. So far, Clemson is 2-0 with Nagys in the starting lineup. In the last two games he has scored just 10 points, but has been active around the basket. He had eight rebounds against South Carolina State to lead Clemson in that area, and was 5-6 from the foul line in the win over Winthrop.
Nagys knows how to get to the foul line. In his 107 minutes of play so far this year he has taken 33 free throws, one every 3.24 minutes, best on the team. That is far ahead of Ray Henderson, who gets to the line every 5.46 minutes, and leading scorer Will Solomon, who is at the line every 6.76 minutes. Nagys has connected when he has been at the line also. He has made 24-33 free throws and the .727 is second on the team.
Clemson 61, South Carolina 58 Clemson gained its biggest victory of the young season in a 61-58 win over South Carolina on December 16. Will Solomon led the Tigers with 26 points and a career high 11 rebounds and a season high three steals.
Solomon scored 17 points in the second half, including four three-point goals. He missed his first five three-point goals of the game, then made his last four. He received support from Adam Allenspach, who had 13 points and nine rebounds, including five off the offensive boards.
Andrius Jurkunas provided intangibles, playing 17 minutes in the second half with a broken right thumb. He scored just two points in the game, but had seven rebounds and a team best four assists. His lone two points came on a key tip-into give Clemson a 57-49 lead with 1:21 left.
There were other heroes also as Ray Henderson had four points, four rebounds and four blocked shots in just 12 minutes. Arturas Jovtokas had seven points on 3-3 shooting and Edward Scott made two free throws with 20 seconds left to give Clemson the important three-point lead.
Clemson trailed 27-26 at intermission, but took and 8-point lead on an 8-0 run at 51-43 with 4:45 left. It was still an eight-point lead at 57-49 with 1:21 remaining, but the Tigers began turning the ball over. South Carolina got the count to within one point at 57-56 and stole the ball with 54 seconds left. But, at the 45 second mark Damien Kinloch called timeout when he was trapped against the sidelines, a timeout South Carolina did not have. A technical foul was called, giving the Tigers two shots and the ball.
South Carolina still cut the lead to one point at 59-58 on a bank shot by Aaron Lucas. But, Scott made his two free throws and a pair of late three-point goal attempts missed and Clemson had the victory.
Clemson won the game despite shooting just 14-30 from the foul line and committing 25 turnovers. The Tigers did win the rebound battle 45-32, including a 17-5 margin over the last 10 minutes of the contest. South Carolina shot just 37 percent from the field and 23 percent from three-point land.
Tigers Get Comeback Victory Clemson’s win over South Carolina was important in many areas. First, the Tigers defeated their rival for the sixth straight year. Second, it was a much needed win for a team that had just lost to South Carolina State at home.
But, perhaps most importantly, Clemson won a close game after trailing at halftime. In fact, the 61-58 win over South Carolina was Clemson’s first win after trailing at the half since March 6, 1998 when Clemson overcame a 40-32 deficit at halftime against Wake Forest in the ACC Tournament, only to win 75-56.
It was the first time Clemson had won a game by three points or less and trailed at halftime since the landmark win over Kentucky at the start ofthe 1996-97 season. Clemson trailed the Wildcats 37-31 in the first half, then came back to force overtime. The Tigers eventually won 79-71. We realize the margin is bigger than three points, but any overtime game should count as a close game.
Clemson was tied at the half against Winthrop, 37-37 and came back to gain victory, 64-59.
Solomon Records First Double-Double Clemson guard Will Solomon had 26 points and 11 rebounds to lead Clemson in both categories in the win over South Carolina on December 16. It was a career high in rebounds for the 6-1 guard and the first time since the 1997-98 season that a guard had recorded at least 11 rebounds in a game. You have to go back to Greg Buckner’s senior year when he had 12 rebounds in a five-point loss at Maryland to find the last guard to collect at least 11 rebounds in a game.
Clemson has been getting strong rebounding from the guards so far this year. Dustin Braddick, who started the year as a guard and is now playing small forward, has averaged 6.7 rebounds per game and is among the top 10 rebounders in the ACC. Unfortunately, Braddick has surgery to correct an ankle problem and will be out for three weeks.
Javtokas Near 60 Percent Shooting Junior college transfer Arturas Javtokas continued his fine shooting in the win over South Carolina. The native of Lithuania made 3-3 shots from the field and is now shooting 59 percent for the year. With his improved shooting touch around the basket, you can see how he scored in double figures in each of his last 18 games as a junior college player at West Nebraska JC. He played for former Clemson assistant Soupy Campbell.
Javtokas has now made 11 of his last 14 shots from the field. He has scored 27 points in his last 73 minutes of play and has had at least four rebounds in seven of his last eight games.
Turnover Margin Must Improve An area Clemson must improve is turnover margin, especially committing turnovers on offense. Last year Clemson averaged just 15 turnovers per game, but this year the figure has risen to 17 per game. That includes 25 turnovers in two of the last four games. The irony is, Clemson has won both of those games. Clemson had 25 turnovers in the win over Charleston Southern and 25 in the win over South Carolina.
Clemson showed improvement against Winthrop, committing just 11 turnovers in the game, second lowest figure of the season.
Clemson has had fewer turnovers than the opposition just twice this year, the three-point loss to South Carolina State and the win over Winthrop. Clemson had just nine turnovers in the South Carolina State game, the team’s low mark for the year, and lost. The next game the Tigers tied for their season high with 25 against South Carolina, and won.
Allenspach Records Career High Clemson center Adam Allenspach scored a career high 18 points in Clemson’s loss to South Carolina State. The native of Parkland, FL made 6-11 shots from the field and also connected on 6-9 from the foul line. After going without a rebound for the first half, Allenspach came alive and pulled in six in the second half.
Allenspach has played well each of the last three games. He has had 45 points and 25 rebounds in the last three games combined, including a double-double in the most recent game, a win over Winthrop (14,10). It was his third double-double of the season. He has now made 9 of his last 11 shots to move his field goal percentage to .525.
Allenspach is also shooting a team best 73.2 percent from the line. No Clemson center has led Clemson in free throw shooting over the course of a year since Ed Brinkley in 1955-56. Brinkley shot .747 from the line that year, hitting 74-99.
For the season, Allenspach is second on the team in scoring with a 11.4 average and is first on the squad (6th in the ACC) in rebounding with 7.9 average. He has seven double figure scoring games and three double figure rebounding games. He recorded double-doubles against East Tennessee State, Wisconsin-GB and Winthrop.
Allenspach was named to the all-tournament team at the SoCon Holiday Hoops at the BiLo Center in Greenville over Thanksgiving weekend. He was Clemson’s only selection to the team. For the three games, Allenspach had 28 points and 28 rebounds.
He was the third leading rebounder in the event. He averaged 33 minutes per game and also did a fine job on defense, holding opposing starting centers to 5-21 shooting and just 19 total points. He held Oregon State’s 6-10 Jason Heide, the team’s top scorer, to 2-9 shooting and just eight points in 30 minutes.
Pasha Bains Joins Active Roster While Clemson has been losing players to injury in recent weeks, Head Coach Larry Shyatt got a boost on Thursday, December 16 when Pasha Bains joined the team for participation in games for the first time. Bains has been with the program since last January when he transfered to Clemson from Wyoming.
Bains responded with four points in 25 minutes. He made just one three-point goal, but it was a big one, a three that gave Clemson a 55-47 lead with 2:33 left. He added three points in 14 minutes against Winthrop.
Bains was signed by Larry Shyatt at Wyoming out of Richmond, Canada. Then, Shyatt left for Clemson. After one semester at Wyoming, Bains requested to transfer to Clemson to play for Shyatt.
The 6-3 guard, who wears number-33, hopes to help Clemson in the three-point shooting department, an area Clemson needs assistance. Bains averaged 38.4 points a game as a senior in high school at Vancouver’s Richmond High. He scored a state record 311 points in 10 career tournament games, and once scored 63 points in a regular season high school contest.
Clemson Walking Wounded Update Clemson has been hit with many injuries so far this year. Here is the rundown:
Andrius Jurkunas — Only senior on team, suffered broken right(shooting) thumb while trying to draw a charge against CentralFlorida on November 26. Missed four games and returned for SouthCarolina State game, but shooting was limited (one shot). Has had10 assists last two games to lead Clemson in that time. EdwardScott — Starting point guard who suffered broken bone in left footduring practice on October 27. Missed all practice and first threegames of the season. Returned to team for the Wisconsin-GB game onNovember 27th. Had surgery to remove toe nails in both big toes onDecember 7. Practicing for the first time this week. Made two freethrows with 20 seconds left to give Clemson three-point lead.Chucky Gilmore — Suffered concussion during December 9 practiceand missed three games. Should be back for limited action againstGeorge Washington. Dustin Braddick — Played through sprained anklethe last four games. Resprained the ankle at evening practice ofDecember 13 and played just 10 minutes against South Carolina. Hadsurgery to clear up number of problems in right ankle in December19 and will be lost for three weeks.
Six Former Tigers in NBA Clemson has six former players on NBA rosters this year. That ties for the most former Clemson players in the NBA in any one season.
The year began with four former players in the league, Elden Campbell with the Charlotte Hornetts, Dale Davis with the Indiana Pacers, Horace Grant with the Seattle Supersonics and Chris Whitney with the Washington Wizard.
Since the beginning of the season, Harold Jamison has joined the active roster of the Miami Heat and Devin Gray has joined the Houston Rockets. Jamison began the year on the injury list, but was activated on December 1 and played against the Boston Celtics on December 3. He had two points in six minutes in his first NBA game.
Gray will be the answer to a great trivia question someday. Who replaced Charles Barkley when the future Hall of Famer suffered his career ending injury? Well, it was Gray, the former Tiger who led the ACC in field goal percentage in 1993-94. As of this writing, Gray had not appeared in a game for the Rockets, but was on the active roster and was dressing for games.
As far as the other veterans are concerned, Davis was having the best season. A starter for the Pacers in his ninth year with the franchise, Davis averages 10 points and nine rebounds per game. He recently had an 18-point, 20-rebound game in a victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Tigers Lead ACC in Rebounding Two areas Clemson has been successful in the first 10 games of the season are rebounding and defense. With the exception of the first half of the South Carolina State game, Clemson has been solid in these areas and Head Coach Larry Shyatt would confirm that.
A look to the recent ACC stats also confirms that feeling. The Tigers rank third the ACC in field goal percentage defense (.376) and first in rebounding (+8.9) per game. The Tigers were 15th in the nation in rebounding this week, ahead of their finish last year when the Tigers were 18th. Adam Allenspach is Clemson’s top rebounder with 7.9 per game, sixth best in the league.
Clemson was outstanding in rebounding and defense last year. As a team Clemson was 18th in the country in rebound margin and led the league in scoring defense, allowing 64.7 points per game. Clemson is third in the ACC in scoring defense this year.
Solomon ACC Player of the Week Clemson guard Will Solomon was named ACC Player of the week for the November 30-December 5 period. Solomon scored 37 against Penn State, 28 against Wofford in two games for the week. Solomon’s 64 points over consecutive games last week were the most by a Clemson player since the 1969-70 season when Butch Zatezalo scored 43 against NC State, then tallied 26 against Wake Forest in consecutive games. Solomon’s current 21.5 scoring average would be the highest by a Tiger since 1969-70 when Butch Zatezalo averaged 21.7 over the course of the season.
Henderson Shooting 80 percent A player sho showed vast improvement in the Charleston Southern game was freshman Ray Henderson. Henderson scored eight points in just 12 minutes, was 2-2 from the field, 4-5 from the line and added three rebounds in his finest outing of the year. The 6-8 forward got off to a slow start this year because he had to have knee surgery to correct some cartilege damage. He missed about four weeks of preseason conditioning and practice.
He continued his outstanding play against South Carolina, hitting 2-3 shots from the field. He also had four blocks, most by a Tiger in a game this year, and four rebounds in just 12 minutes. Henderson made his first eight shots as a Clemson player, believed to be the longest run at the beginning of a player’s career in school history.
For the year, Henderson is now 8-10 from the field and also has 14 rebounds and 23 total points in his 71 minutes of play. The native of Charlotte has shown an ability to take and hit the baseline jumpshot.
Solomon-Scott Combine for 55 Points Starting guards Will Solomon and Edward Scott combined for 55 points in the 85-75 loss to Penn State on December 1 in the ACC vs. Big Ten Challenge. Solomon scored a career high 37 points, most by a Tiger in 25 years, while Scott had 18 points, also his career high.
That was the most points scored by two Tigers in the same game since Rayfield Ragland (32) and Devin Gray (30) combined for 62 against Charleston Southern in the 1993-94 season at Charleston. You have to go back nearly 30 years to find the last time Clemson’s starting backcourt combined for 55 points in a single game. On January 10, 1970, Butch Zatezalo (30) and Dave Thomas (25), (not the Wendy’s owner), combined for 55 in a game against Virginia.
The record for points scored in a game by a Clemson starting backcourt is 64 by the same duo. Zatezalo had 46, and Thomas posted 18 in a 100-84 loss to Wake Forest on 2-18-69.
The 55 points by Clemson’s starting backcourt at Penn State was just the third time in the last 30 years that the starting guards had reached even 50 points. Vincent Hamilton (27) and Glenn Corbett (23) combined for 50 against Appalachian State in 1984-85, and Skip Wise (38) and Van Gregg (16) combined for 54 against Pennsylvania in 1974-75.
Scott Connects for 18 in First Career Start Clemson freshman guard Edward Scott scored 18 points in 38 minutes of play in Clemson’s 10-point loss at Penn State. His performance was remarkable considering he had not practiced between October 27 and the Wisconsin-Green Bay game of November 25th. He shot 6-11 from the field, including 4-8 on three-point shots and also had six rebounds at Penn State.
When was the last time a Clemson player had 18 points in his first start? You don’t have to go back very far. Last year, current sophomore Will Solomon had 19 points against #1 ranked Duke in his first college start. It was the start of something big for Solomon, who now leads the ACC in scoring.
Scott made his first appearance of the season in the Wisconsin-Green Bay game at the BiLo Center on November 27. The 4A Player of the Year in South Carolina suffered a toe injury in the Wisconsin-Green Bay game on his right foot, and that injury limited his effectiveness in terms of speed and agility against Oregon State. It certainly affected his jump shooting ability.
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