MONDAY, JANUARY 04, 2010
Dolphins back on track with 91-52 rout of Kennesaw State
The JU men’s basketball team left nothing to chance on Monday night at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena.

The Dolphins (4-8, 1-3 A-Sun) had their most complete game of the season on offense and defense to rout Kennesaw State (5-9, 1-3 A-Sun), 91-52, for their third win in the last four games.

Ben Smith led four Dolphins in double figures with 21 points and seven assists, his fifth straight game in double figures for the A-Sun Player of the Week.

“We did a good job of executing and playing defense,” said JU head coach Cliff Warren. “Everyone contributed tonight and that is what we preach every day in practice.”

Jacksonville put up its second-highest scoring night of the season while holding the Owls to a season-low 51 points, hitting just 17-of-60 from the floor.

That defensive effort was on full display in the first half when the Dolphins held the Owls to just 14 points to take a 39-14 lead into the locker room at halftime. It was the fewest points allowed by JU in a half in the Cliff Warren era.

On offense, JU dominated by hitting 54.9 percent of its shots – the second-best shooting night of the season. The Dolphins hit eight 3-pointers, with Smith knocking all four long range attempts en route to an 8-for-10 shooting night.

Jacksonville also dominated the Owls on the glass, holding a 55-32 advantage, with 26 second chance points on 21 offensive rebounds.

It was a team effort all night for JU as the Dolphins got significant contributions from a lot of players.

Ayron Hardy had 15 points, four rebounds, two assists and three steals, hitting 7-of-13 from the floor. Lehmon Colbert was a force inside with nine rebounds and six points.

Glenn Powell was a beast on the glass, pulling down a season-best 13 rebounds – the most by a Dolphin in a game this season. Travis Cohn scored 14 points, hitting 6-of-8 from the floor.

The bench was pivotal in the effort for the Dolphins, scoring a season-high 31 points, with Jacksonville-native Chris Rozier scoring a season-high eight to lead the subs.

Kennesaw State got 13 points from Markeith Cummings and 10 points from Kurtis Woods.

JU built a 10-point lead in the first 10 minutes and closed the half on a 17-2 run over the final seven minutes to take a 25-point lead at halftime.

KSU got as close as 18, but the Dolphins would not let them back into the game, pushing the lead throughout the final minutes to win by 39.

The Dolphins will return to their life on the road as they travel to face Stetson on Friday night. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.