After defeating Winthrop University 71-61 on Saturday and getting December off to a winning start, JMU will look for its first set of back-to-back home wins since January 2011 when it hosts the East Tennessee State Buccaneers on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
The Dukes haven't recorded consecutive wins since defeating The Citadel and George Washington in December 2011, but a five-game home stretch may produce that opportunity. Contributions from senior forward Rayshawn Goins and emerging freshman guard Andre Nation are powering the offense, as both combine to average 26.8 points per game.
Goins was just one point off his fourth 20-point game of the season on Saturday. He scored 19 points and collected eight rebounds against Winthrop, both team-high marks. He has led JMU in rebounds in six of seven games this season.
After doling out a career-high three assists against George Washington last week, Nation reset his career-high mark with six assists in Saturday's game. He also has 17 steals on the season, ranking him 50th nationally, tied with teammate Alioune Diouf.
Senior guard Devon Moore dished out five assists as well, marking his second straight five-assist game and his fifth of the season. He also had a career-high four steals. He needs 10 points to become the 26th player in JMU history to reach the 1,000-point milestone.
Most notably, Saturday marked the return of redshirt senior forward Andrey Semenov, who had missed each game since seeing limited action in the season opener at UCLA. Semenov suffered an injury early in the game against the Bruins and missed the subsequent five games, when the Dukes were 1-4.
Semenov did not start against Winthrop, but he came off the bench early in the game. He finished with 17 points, second-most of the team, in just 19 minutes on the court. He connected on six of his 11 shot attempts, including 3-of-8 from behind the arc.
For East Tennessee
State, the Bucs are held together by do-it-all freshman forward Lester Wilson.
Wilson averages just under 20 points per game, shooting .500 from the field.
Most recently, ETSU coasted past NAIA foe Milligan College (Tenn.). The Buccaneers had four playersr reach 14 points, led by Wilson's 27-point effort with nine rebounds. They led the Buffaloes in rebounds 43-21 and in paint scoring 44-24. ETSU did not allow Milligan to attempt a single free throw in the game.
The Buccaneers won their last game against the Dukes, a 70-56 victory in Johnson City, Tennessee last January. Forwards Tommy Hubbard and Isiah Brown as well as guard Adam Sollazzo all reached double figure scoring in last season's game, but all three players were lost to graduation. They accounted for 55 of ETSU's 70 points in last year's game, one in which the Buccaneers grabbed an early 20-5 lead and never looked back, thanks to 23 forced turnovers against the Dukes. ETSU leads the series 7-4.
This is the second time East Tennessee State will travel to the state of Virginia, as it opened the season with an 80-62 loss at Virginia Tech.