Men's basketball looks to continue the team effort on Saturday at Mercer

Jan. 11, 2008

MACON, Ga. - The JU men's basketball team used a complete team effort to knock off Kennesaw State on Thursday night.

Every Dolphin that played scored and had at least one rebound in leading the Dolphins to a 73-56 win over KSU.

The Dolphins (6-8, 3-0 A-Sun) will need that same kind of effort on Saturday as they face Mercer (7-8, 2-0 A-Sun) in an early showdown for first place in the Atlantic Sun Conference standings. Tipoff is set for 4:30 p.m., with the game being broadcast on 1010XL.

"We stress each day in practice that everyone on the team has to contribute for us to be successful," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "Against Kennesaw, we had a tremendous amount of effort from everyone, which is all you can ask."

The team play resulted in the Dolphins equaling their largest road win in A-Sun play. JU scored 29 baskets against the Owls, with 23 of those being assisted. Ben Smith was responsible for 11 of those assists, setting a new career high for the point guard.

Jacksonville also did a solid job of keeping the Owls off the boards, where they are the strongest. JU held an impressive 35-24 advantage on the glass and had eight second chance points.

With that kind of effort in the post, it opened up the perimeter game as the Dolphins stroked a season-high nine 3-pointers - with Smith hitting four.

The one glaring number on the stat sheet is turnovers as JU committed 24 against the Owls.

Despite the generosity with the ball, the Dolphins are off to their best start in conference play since joining the A-Sun in 1998 and it is just the third time in school history that JU is 3-0 in league play.

"While we are off to a good start, we are by no means where I want us to be," Warren said. "We've still got a lot of work to do for us to reach our goals."