ODU Rallies, Then Holds Off George Mason, 65-63
By ODU Athletics
Jan. 6, 2007
NORFOLK, VA-- Junior guard Brandon Johnson scored 14 points dished out seven assists and came up with a school record tying eight steals and Brian Henderson scored 13 of his 17 points in the second half to lead the Monarchs of Old Dominion (10-4/3-0) to a 65-63 Colonial Athletic Association victory over the Patriots of George Mason (6-7/0-3) Saturday afternoon in front of a crowd of 7,372 at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.
The Patriots led 31-21 at halftime and by as much 12, 24-12 with 4:37 left in the first half. Mason shot .650(13-20) in the first half, while ODU shot .259 (7-27) from the floor. Will Thomas and Dre Smith each had 12 for Mason, while Valdas Vasylius led ODU with nine points and five rebounds for ODU. Brandon Johnson had six of his eight steals in the opening half.
In the second half, down by as much as 12, 35-23 with 17:37 left and eighth , 40-32 with 14:14 left, the Monarchs tied the game at 47 with 7:02 left on a Brandon Johnson layup. ODU took its first lead at 49-47 with 6:01 left as freshman Gerald Lee scored.
Valdas Vasylius hit two free throws to put the Monarchs up for good at 51-49 with 4:54 left. Vasylius came back a hit another trey on Johnson's pass to put ODU up 54-49 with 2:26 left. Brian Henderson hit a trey to give ODU a 57-49 lead with 1:30 left, but the Patriots came back.
Folarin Campbell hit a trey to cut it to 59-54 after a steal, John Vaughan made a layup to make it 59-56 with 29 seconds to go. ODU's Henderson hit two free throws, but John Vaughan nailed a trey with 22 seconds left to make it 61-59 ODU.
After trading two free throws, Henderson hit two more free throws to give the Monarchs a 65-61 lead with 12 seconds left, but Darryl Monroe's followed a missed shot with a layup to make it 65-63. Monroe was injured on the foul and Tim Burns missed the free Throw with Folarin Campbell getting the rebound and was fouled. Campbell missed both free throws with Vasylius hauling down the rebound to give the Monarchs the win. Vasylius finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, while freshman Gerald Lee scored seven points.
The eight steals by Johnson tied the ODU school record set by Oliver Purnell (current Clemson head coach) on Feb. 6, 1975 against Washington and Lee.
George Mason shot .387 (12-31) from the field in the second half, while ODU shot .545 (12-22) in the second half. The Patriots outrebounded ODU, 32-29, but committed 20 turnovers to ODU's 16.
ODU returns to action on Monday night when they play at Hofstra. Game time is 7 p.m.
ODU NOTE Drew Williamson has 477 career assists which ranks him tenth all-time in CAA history and eighth all-time at ODU as he passed Oliver Purnell who had 476. Williamson has moved up to sixth on the all-time steals list with 176. He needs 12 more to get to tenth on the CAA all-time list.