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Merch Madness
Courtesy: JMUSports.com
Men’s Basketball Prepares to Face Detroit in Sears BracketBusters
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:02/16/2012
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James Madison men's basketball will travel to non-conference opponent Detroit on Saturday for the 10th annual Sears BracketBusters weekend. The match is set for 2 p.m. at Calihan Hall in Detroit. The event will feature 142 teams from 16 conferences, including 13 nationally televised games that will be aired on ESPN, ESPN 2, ESPNU, or ESPN3.

JMU was unable to pull out a win against Georgia State Tuesday evening, as the Dukes fell to the Panthers, 67-64, at the Convocation Center. The loss marked JMU's third straight home defeat, dropping its record to 11-17 overall and 4-12 in the Colonial Athletic Association. Redshirt junior forward Andrey Semenov led the Dukes with 22 points and six rebounds. Semenov converted six three-point attempts, tying his career best. Redshirt junior guard A.J. Davis contributed 20 points and five rebounds on the night.

The Panthers made the most out of their free throw opportunities, converting 21-of-24 on the night and 9-of-10 in the final three minutes of regulation, to hold off JMU's late second-half rally. Georgia State shot 52 percent from the field in the first half to build a 35-27 lead at intermission before the Dukes responded with an 8-0 run to open the second half, tying the game at 35. The Panthers crawled back in front however, scoring nine straight points to regain the lead at 44-35 with 14:13 remaining. JMU got as close as a single possession on two different occasions but were unable to maintain the momentum as GSU continued to take advantage of JMU fouls. The Dukes outshot GSU from the field on the night, 47 to 42 percent.

In Horizon League play Wednesday night, the Detroit Titans defeated conference foe Wright State, 71-55, at the Ervin J. Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio. The victory marked the Titans' fourth consecutive, improving their record to 16-12 overall and 10-6 in HL play. Detroit had four players score in double figures to lead the offense. Junior guard Jason Calliste led all scorers with 14 points, while senior center forward Eli Holman registered 12 points and 10 rebounds.

After falling behind to WSU 33-28, Detroit used a 12-0 run to close out the first half and take a 40-33 lead into the locker room. The Titans carried that momentum into the second half, shooting 57 percent from the field and using a 43-22 run to close out the game and secure the win. Detroit's defense was able to contain the Raiders' offense in the second half, limiting them to shooting just 25 percent from the field.

Horizon League Player of the Week, sophomore guard Ray McCallum, has been the Titans' offensive weapon all season, averaging 15 points per game while shooting 45 percent from the field. One of the nation's top recruits out of high school, McCallum chose to play for his father, Ray McCallum, at UDM. Detroit will also rely on senior leadership from Holman, who is averaging 11 points per game and leading the team in shooting percentage at 61 percent from the field.

For the Dukes, Davis continues to lead the Dukes offense on the season, averaging 16 points per game while shooting 45 percent from the field. Senior guard, Humpty Hitchens, JMU's second-leading scorer less than a point behind Davis, was quiet last game against GSU, scoring just six points before leaving with an injury.  His status for Saturday is doubtful.

This marks the first meeting between these two programs. JMU holds a 1-4 all time overall record against Horizon opponents. The Dukes are 0-2 against Youngstown State and 1-2 against Butler. Madison is also 3-2 all-time in BracketBusters games.

The Dukes will pick back up with CAA play on Wednesday evening as they travel to first-place Drexel for a 7 p.m. matchup. Drexel defeated JMU earlier this month on February 8, 2012, by a score of 63-56.

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