Men’s basketball has high hopes for season

Williams is ready to take the team to new heights. (Courtesy of the Sports Information Desk)

After starting off the year winning six of the first ten games, the Lions finished with a disappointing 9-16 record last year that left them amongst the bottom of the conference.

The team is looking to find a consistent winning edge this season as they proved they can do throughout glimmers of games last year.

However they’ll have to accomplish it without the team’s leading scorer last season Kyle Rawson who averaged 9.7 points per game, as well as Albert Matlock and Dan Bucher on the court. The three graduating seniors combined for almost 1,200 minutes played last season and were constant presences on the court.

Head Coach Kelly Williams, who is entering his fifth season with the team, remains optimistic for the upcoming season though, and is happy with the new players looking to fill roles and benefit the team.

The young talent seems to be in place and there is a high level of anticipation to see how the team will rebuild from the positives of the previous year.

One of the younger players on the team to watch this season is sophomore guard Emmanuel Matlock who is looking to continue his success after a breakout freshman year in which he averaged 21.1 minutes and 6.7 points per game

The team looks to build on their offensive production and keep working hard to string together win streaks as they have done in the past.

“We’re a very up-tempo team, and we love to score in transition” Williams said.

The Lions open the season on Tuesday, Nov. 12 in Wayne to take on the 2011-12 Atlantic Region Division champion rival William Paterson University, who finished last season with a 24-4 overall record. In the Lion’s only encounter with the Pioneers last year, they battled close but came up short in a six point loss.

But with high expectations for the 2012-13 season, the Lions have an opportunity to avenge the previous loss and start the season on strong footing once again.

The team will play 10 games, six of which are conference match ups, before Winter break. The home opener will be played on Monday, Nov. 26 against Centenary College in Packer Hall at 7 p.m.