Men's hoops start four-game road trip at Kennesaw State

Jan. 9, 2008

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Emboldened by two wins at home to open Atlantic Sun Conference play, the JU men's basketball team begins a four-game road trip on Thursday at Kennesaw State.

Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m., with the game being aired on 1010XL. The game will also be broadcast live on the Internet at ASun.TV through

Jacksonville (5-8, 2-0 A-Sun) is off to its best start in conference play since the 2000-01 season after rallying from early deficits in both games last week.

The Dolphins trailed by as many as 19 in the first half against Stetson and by seven with a 65 seconds remaining in regulation before prevailing in triple overtime. Against Florida Gulf Coast, the Dolphins dug an early hole again - trailing by double digits in the first seven minutes before battling back to take a 3-point lead at halftime.

The one constant in both games was the Dolphins play in the second half. Jacksonville has proved to be a strong closing team this season, having put up more points than its opponents in the past four games.

Aiding the Dolphins efforts has been the play of Ben Smith, Lehmon Colbert and Evan Jefferson.

Since being inserted in the starting lineup at Troy, Jefferson is averaging 12.8 points per game and has put up double figures in all four games.

Colbert has broken out of a scoring slump with back-to-back double-digit scoring efforts. He racked up 18 points against Stetson and followed with 15 points against Florida Gulf Coast, after not scoring in double figures in three straight games.

The highlight of the weekend was the play of Smith, who earned A-Sun "Player of the Week" honors. The sophomore point guard put up a career-high 33 points in the win over Stetson and followed with a game-high 16 points against FGCU, with 12 coming in the second half.

Thursday's game is a chance to break through at KSU as the Dolphins have lost both of their trips the past two seasons.