Dragons Hold Off ODU for 17th Straight Win
Damion Lee made six three-pointers and scored 24 points as Drexel edged Old Dominion, 73-72, for its school record 17th straight win. The Dragons ended the regular season with a 25-5 record and won the CAA regular season title with a 16-2 mark.
Old Dominion's Kent Bazemore, who finished with a career-high 37 points, was fouled on a three-point attempt with less than one second remaining in the game with the Monarchs (19-12, 13-5) down by three points. The senior made the first two but missed the third as Drexel won in Norfolk for the first time since 2005 in front of a sellout crowd of 8,472 at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.
Drexel led for most of the second half but could not put the Monarchs away. The teams were tied at 54-54 with 7:30 to play before Lee nailed a three-pointer from the corner. Drexel would hold the lead the rest of the way, but never by more than six points. Old Dominion had the lead down to two with 2:52 remaining, but Chris Fouch hit a huge three-pointer putting the Dragons ahead, 67-62 with 2:24 left in the game. Samme Givens and Fouch each made a pair of free throws in the final minute to give Drexel a cushion, but Dimitri Batten scored, was fouled and made a free throw to trim the lead to 71-70 with only 15 seconds left. The Monarchs fouled Fouch with 10 second to play and the junior calmly made both as the Dragons went ahead by three before Bazemore was fouled in the final second.
Drexel trailed by six with 10:40 to play in the first half after a Chris Cooper lay-in. The Dragons answered with an 18-2 run and took the lead at 30-20. Damion Lee had three three-pointers during the run, including two as the Dragons broke ODU's press. Drexel shots 43 percent in the first half and had seven players scored at least two points. ODU responded with a run of its own, getting to within three, but Chris Fouch sank a three-pointer from the corner at the buzzer to put Drexel ahead 38-32. It was the second straight game Fouch banged a long three-pointer as time expired in the first half.
Lee had 13 of his 24 points in the first half and made a career-best six three-pointers. Fouch added 15 points, while Givens picked up his sixth double double of the year with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Frantz Massenat was the fourth Dragon in double figures with 10 points and had eight assists. The Monarchs were held to just 36 percent shooting by the Drexel defense and made just three of 18 long-range attempts.
Drexel opens the 2012 CAA Tournament on Saturday afternoon at noon. The Dragons will face the winner of the #8/#9 game, which takes place on Friday.