Dolphins prep for South Carolina State on Saturday
JU vs. South Carolina State Game Notes

Nov. 24, 2006

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Jacksonville men's basketball team returns to the court on Saturday to start a busy week of basketball.

The Dolphins (2-2) will play four games in the next seven days, with only one at home - Saturday's tilt against South Carolina State. The second half of the doubleheader with the JU women's team is scheduled to tipoff at 7 p.m.

Jacksonville has won its first two home games with suffocating defense and timely offensive production from everyone on the team.

"With our style of play, we need everyone to give their best effort when they are on the floor," said JU head coach Cliff Warren. "The last game we had two guys come off the bench to score some points for us and it will change every night. Everyone has to be ready to play when their number is called."

JU scored 43 points off the bench against Florida Tech on Wednesday, the highest point total from the JU bench since midway through the 2004-05 season.

Leading the way off the bench was freshman Tyrone Curnell and junior Evan Jefferson. Curnell scored 18 points and pulled down eight rebounds while Jefferson came out of an early season slump with a career-best four 3-pointers en route to his 18 points.

Another bright spot for the Dolphins was their inside play as JU scored 52 points in the paint. That helped the Dolphins put up more than 40 points in each half, giving Jacksonville three straight halves in which they have scored more than 40.

Part of that can be attributed to the play of freshman point guard Ben Smith. The youngster scored 12 points and dished out 10 assists for his first career double-double while committing zero turnovers.

After Saturday's game, JU hits the road for the next three games - facing UCF on Monday before opening Atlantic Sun Conference play at Lipscomb on Thursday and defending tournament champion Belmont on Saturday.