Jan. 25, 2005
BALTIMORE, MD -
The Team:The Blue Jays continued their winning ways last week picking up two wins. JHU defeated McDaniel 73-64 last Wednesday, and pulled out a 58-57 win over Dickinson Saturday on the road.
The Coach: Bill Nelson is currently in his 19th season as head coach of the Blue Jays. Nelson has compiled a record of 306-180 at Homewood and is the winningest coach in school history, while his career record stands at 411-233. Under Nelson, Hopkins has finished with a winning record in each of the past nine seasons and advanced to postseason play in six of the last eight seasons.
Nelson win 300th Game: With the Blue Jays' 85-38 win over Cal Tech on 12/31/04, head coach Bill Nelson picked up his 300th win at Johns Hopkins. Nelson is the winningest coach in Blue Jay basketball history, and also sports the highest winning percentage.
Captains: The 2004-05 Blue Jays will use a two captains this season. Senior Eric Toback (Ellicott City, MD/Mt. Hebron) and junior Jeff Thompson (Binghamton, NY/Loomis Chaffe) will lead JHU. This is the second year Toback will serve as a captain and the first for Thompson.
First Place: The Blue Jays own a 7-2 mark in the Centennial Conference, good for a share of first place. The Bullets of Gettysburg also are 7-2, but Hopkins defeated the Bullets earlier this season in Gettysburg. The two teams will meet again, February 16 in Baltimore.
Rolling: The Blue Jays have won their last four games, seven of their last eight, and eight of their last nine conference games.
Tough at Goldfarb: Johns Hopkins continues to be dominant at home. JHU is 5-1 this season and is 28-2 in home games dating back to the start of the 2002-03 season. The Blue Jays' only two losses in this span came last season to Franklin & Marshall, 67-63 on February 24, 2004, and this year to Dickinson, 67-64 on December 4.
Since the start of the 1994 season, the Blue Jays are 116-34 (.773) at home, the second best winning percentage, and the second most home wins among Centennial Conference Teams during this time. Franklin & Marshall owns the best home record during that period, as they gone 166-22 (.883).
Cardiac Kids: Once again the Blue Jays won a game in the final seconds. Against Dickinson, sophomore TJ Valerio (Blue Bell, PA/St. Joseph's Prep) nailed a three-pointer with eight seconds remaining to give JHU a 58-57 win over Dickinson. Four of JHU's last five games have been decided in the closing moments of the game.
Against Haverford, the Blue Jays squandered a late lead, and were forced into an overtime period. After JHU tied the game at 80 with 10 seconds remaining, the Fords dribbled the length of the court, missed a shot, but collected the offensive rebound and scored as time expired to win.
When the Blue Jays traveled to Muhlenberg, they clung to a three point lead with just over a minute remaining. Muhlenberg's Jeff Stewart made a lay-up, but missed the free throw that would have tied the game. After each team turned the ball over, and the Blue Jays missed a shot, Stewart had the ball in his hands attempting to win the game for the Mules, but missed.
When the Blue Jays hosted Ursinus, they were down 69-67 with only 2.3 seconds remaining. The Blue Jays inbounded the ball from under the Ursinus basket where freshman Kevin Roach (Deerwood, MD/Colonel Zadok Magruder) threw a pass just past the half-court line, where senior Eric Toback launched a 35-footer that was good for the win as time expired.
No Room For Misses: The Blue Jays' last six games have been decided by a combined 16 points, with the Blue Jays going 5-1 over that span. On the year, JHU has gone 5-3 in games decided by five points or less, and 6-4 in games decided by 10 points or less.
The Best Offense..... The Blue Jays are limiting the opposition to only 64.3 points per game, the second best mark in the Centennial Conference. Teams are shooting only 41.1% from the floor against JHU, and 25.7% from behind the three-point arc, both the leading numbers in the Conference.
JHU has held the opposition to less than 58 points six different times this season.
During JHU's current four-game winning streak, they have held the opposition under their season average, and three times have done so by more than 10 points.
Jumping Out Early: The Blue Jays are 7-2 in games that they have taken a lead into halftime, but only 3-3 in games in which they have trailed going into the half.
Griffin Steps Up: Sophomore Matt Griffin (Glen Mills, PA/Penncrest), saw his playing time increase significantly with the injury of sophomore Danny Nawrocki (Syosset, NY/Chaminade). Griffin averaged 17.0 points in the Blue Jays' two games this week, and posted a career-high 22 points against Dickinson. For his efforts last week Griffin was named to the Centennial Honor Roll. On the year, Griffin is averaging 6.9 points per game.
Toback Leading the Jays: Eric Toback is leading the Blue Jays in scoring this season, averaging 14.9 points per game, 10th best in the Centennial Conference. He is also second on the team, and seventh in the conference with 6.9 rebounds per game.
Mr. Assister: Jeff Thompson leads the Blue Jays and is sixth in the Centennial Conference with 3.3 assists per game. Thompson posted a career-high nine rebounds in JHU's win over Muhlenberg.
Roach Jumps Boards: Freshmen Kevin Roach posted a career-high in rebounds for the second straight game, as he pulled 10 rebounds against McDaniel. He broke his previous career-high of seven rebounds which he established against Ursinus.
All Tournament Teams: For their efforts in the Blue Jay Invitational, Danny Nawrocki was named the Tournament's Most Valuable Player, and a member of the All-Tournament Team, while Bobby Sharafeddin (Silver Spring, MD/The Barrie School) was also named to the All-Tournament Team.
Nawrocki was also named to the All-Tournament Team of the Cal Tech Holiday Festival.
Bombs Away: Johns Hopkins tied a school record and set a Blue Jay Invitational record with 31 three point field goal attempts in its 77-66 win over Keystone. The Blue Jays hit 13 threes in the win.