Nova Knocks Off Quakers

Villanova moved north of .500 on the season with a 68-55 win over Penn at the Palestra last night. The referees dominated the tempo by calling 52 personal fouls. The Wildcats started the game well, went flat through the middle of the first-half and then capped off a late surge with an Achraf Yacoubou three-ball off a broken play to hit the locker room up 35-27. 'Nova allowed a quick 5 point burst to put Penn back in the game quickly in the second half. Eventually, 'Nova built a seven or eight point cushion late in the half and extended it down the stretch to post the thirteen point win.
Dominated the glass - +15
Balanced scoring with four players in double-figures
Shot 35.3% from beyond the arc
Held Penn to 33.3% shooting from the floor
Not so goods:
10 Assists to a whopping 15 turnovers against a Penn defense that doesn't exactly dominate with ball pressure
22 personal fouls committed despite having a size and athleticism advantage over the Quakers
Only 68.4% shooting from the free-throw line
A horrid 39.1% FG shooting performance
Player Evals & Stats
Ryan Arcidiacono
25 Min, 3-7 FG, 3-6 3P, 3-4 FT, 1 Reb, 2 Asst, 4 TO, 1 Stl, 12 Pts
It was a positive to see Arcidiacono shoot the three-ball well. He drained one from NBA range. Continues to struggle a bit with his handle and decision-making - yielding 4 turnovers off-set by only 2 assists.
Darrun Hilliard
32 Min, 1-6 FG, 0-2 3P, 5-10 FT, 3 Reb, 1 Asst, 2 TO, 2 Stl,1 Blk, 7 Pts
Remains mired in a shooting slump. His defense remains a constant. Needs to be stronger with the ball.
Jayvaughn Pinkston
22 Min, 2-7 FG, 0-2 3P, 6-8 FT, 3 Rebs, 1 Asst, 0 TO, 0 Stl, 10 Pts
Foul trouble limited his ability to be a more positive force on offense. It was encouraging to see Pinkston play a game without a turnover. Made a nice post-feed for an easy Wildcat bucket. Should have been more dominant scoring in the paint against Penn.
James Bell
22 Min, 2-5 FG, 1-2 3P, 2-2 FT, 6 Rebs, 2 Asst, 0 TOs, 1 Stl, 7 Pts
Did a nice job on the glass to go with a turnover free outing. Had a strong take to the rim in the second half.
Mouphtaou Yarou
19 Min, 3-7 FG, 4-4 FT, 5 Rebs, 1 Asst, 0 TO, 0 Blk, 2 Stl, 10 Pts
Was active an reasonably effective in his minutes but his PT was limited by foul trouble. Is it safe to project that this will be the only game of the season in which Yarou, Bell and Pinkston combine for ZERO turnovers?
Tony Chennault
16 Min, 0-1 FG, 0-0 3PFG, 0-0 FTs, 1 Rebs, 0 Stl, 1 Asst., 4 TOs, 0 Pts
Chennault will want to forget about this game as quickly as possible. A foul and turnover festival with little positive value provided to the cause at either end of the floor. Stinkers happen - a veteran should bounce right back.
Maurice Sutton
19 Min, 3-4 FG, 3-6 FT, 4 Rebs, 0 Asst., 4 TO, 1 Blks, 0 Stl, 9 Pts
Sutton wasn't as much of a difference-maker on defense as he generally is but he did chip in considerably on the offense end. Turnovers have always been an issue for Sutton.
Daniel Ochefu
20 Min, 0-2 FG, 0-1 FTs, 5 Reb, 1 Asst, 0 TO, 1 Blk, 1 Stl, 0 Pts
His contribution on offense was a nice pass to Sutton from the high post. Ochefu contributed a solid rebounding game.
Achraf Yacoubou
25 Min, 4-7 FG, 2-5 3PFG, 3-3 FTs, 6 Rebs, 1 Asst, 1 Stl, 1 TO, 13 Pts
Once again Yacoubou is earning his PT. He made two big threes, had an impressive put-back dunk, rebounded the ball with authority, and played some solid defense.
Mislav Brzoja
Made a cameo.
The next game for Villanova is Tuesday night against SJU(PA). After a life-less effort on Hawk Hill last season, will the Cats come ready to play hard?