Conger In Rarified Air Demitrius Conger reached 1,000 PLAYER PTS. REBS. AST. STLS. points and 200 assists for his David Vanterpool 1,474 630 401 247 career with 19 points and three Ahmad Smith 1,261 536 245 66 assists in St. Bonaventure’s Demitrius Conger 1,049 566 208 72 game against VCU on Jan. 12. Conger became the 39th player and 245 assists from 2002-2006, and in the storied history of SBU basketball David Vanterpool, who posted 1,474 to net 1,000 points, and with 566 career points, 630 rebounds and 401 assists rebounds, the senior also became just from 1991-95. Additionally, Conger the third Bona player to amass 1,000 needs just 28 more steals to reach points, 500 rebounds and 200 assists. 100 thefts in his career. If the Brooklyn native were to get to that milestone, The only other St. Bonaventure players he would join Vanterpool as the only to reach 1,000 points, 500 rebounds two players in St. Bonaventure history and 200 assists are Ahmad Smith, who with 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 200 registered 1,261 points, 536 rebounds assists and 100 steals.
A-10 Snapshot One of the deepest conferences in the nation, the 16-team Atlantic 10 has already displayed its depth through just the first four/five games of the league docket. All of the 16 teams have at least one loss, and 11 squads have two or three losses. Every team has at least one win with the exception of Duquesne, and various RPI reports have as many as 11 A-10 teams in the top-100. With its two road wins over then top-50 Temple and then top-60 Saint Joseph’s, St. Bona saw its RPI jump from near 200 to around 100 late this week. Quick Hitters # The 17 first-half points the Bonnies held Saint Joseph’s to on Wednesday are the fewest they have allowed any opponent to score in an opening stanza this year; the previous low was 24 by Cornell. # Saint Joseph’s held a 36-19 edge on the glass against Bonaventure Wednesday night, tied for the largest rebounding disparity the Bonnies have faced this year; Colorado State out-rebounded SBU by 17 as well, 45-28. # Matthew Wright’s eight 3-pointers over the past two games are the most in a two-game stretch in the junior’s career. # Demitrius Conger’s 21 points at Saint Joseph’s are the senior’s most against an A-10 opponent (during regular-season play) in his career; his previous high was 19, set exactly two weeks ago opposite VCU. # The Bonnies have not won a game this year when they trail with 5 minutes remaining (0-6).
Starting Off On The Right Foot
For the second game in a row the St. Bona starting five produced a majority of SBU’s points in its win at Saint Joseph’s Wednesday night. The Bona quintet accounted for 67 of Bonaventure’s 73 points (91.7 percent), the second straight game the starting five has tallied 91 percent of Bona’s team scoring as it also was responsible for 91.3 percent of SBU’s 81 points at Temple. The 91.7 percent at Saint Joe’s is the highest percentage of points from the starting lineup this year for the Bonnies. The Bona bench – which has been great this year – hasn’t been needed the last two games, and it marks the first time this campaign that they have tallied single-digit points in consecutive games, and just the third time overall.
Distributing The Rock Senior Chris Johnson tied his career high for scoring in four of St. Bonaventure’s first eight games this year, but recently he has been making his presence felt by distributing the ball. Over the last five games, the Nova Scotia product has issued 18 assists, representing more than half (51 percent) of his total for the year (35). Included in that is a three-game stretch in which he passed out 16 of the 18 assists. He set his career high with seven dimes at Temple on Saturday, breaking his previous high set just the game before against Xavier (five), and also issued four helpers versus VCU in contest before that. In A-10 games, Johnson has committed just three turnovers to go along with his 18 assists, coming out to a 6.0 assist-to-turnover ratio – the best in the league in conference games only. Spreading The Wealth
# The Bonnies rank in the top-90 nationally in eight different statistical categories: 3-Point Percentage: 37.7, 37th Assist/Turnover Ratio: 1.2, 59th 3-Pointers Per Game: 7.4, 62nd Turnovers Per Game: 12.3, 63rd Free-Throw Percentage: 72.8, 65th Points Per Game: 72.1, 82nd Turnover Margin: +1.9, 82nd Assists Per Game: 14.5, 87th
Demitrius Conger’s 21 points at Saint Joseph’s on Wednesday mark the second game in a row SBU has had a player score 20 or more in a game, but it is just the fourth time this year that has occurred. Matthew Wright tallied 22 against Temple last Saturday, and Conger owns the other two 20-point performances (20 vs. Buffalo, 26 vs. Iona). Despite just four 20-point individual performances this year, St. Bona still ranks as a top-85 offense nationally, averaging 72.1 points per game.
SportsCenter’s Top 10 Both Youssou Ndoye and Demitrius Conger were featured on SportsCenter’s Top 10 Plays last Wednesday. Ndoye (No. 8) emphatically rejected two Xavier shots in a span of 13 seconds on the same defensive trip for the Bonnies. Conger (No. 7) threw down a one-handed tomahawk dunk over a Xavier defender.
Carrying A Heavy Weight Senior Demitrius Conger has played 614 minutes this year, which is 95 minutes more than anyone else on the Bona roster. The next closest is Chris Johnson, who has logged 519 minutes, and after him is Matthew Wright at 450 minutes. Nine SBU players average double-figure minutes per game, but Conger is on pace for his third straight season of 1,000 or more minutes. He logged a career-high 1,088 as a sophomore and 1,073 last year as a junior.
CJ & Team Returning To Form Senior Chris Johnson turned in the fifth-best singleseason free-throw shooting performance in program history last year, but got off to a poor – for him – start to the season this campaign. Johnson made just 68.3 percent (28-41) of his attempts from the free throw line through the first 11 games of the year. However, over the last seven outings, the Canadian has missed just one shot (18-19), a 94.7-percent clip. His return to form has coincided with Bona’s overall return to form from the charity stripe as over the past seven games the team is shooting 84.3 percent from the free-throw line (86-102) after going just 70.2 percent (186-265) through the first 11 contests. In conference games only, SBU leads the A-10 with an 81.4 percentage from the free-throw line. The next closest team is Temple, and the Owls connect at a 75-percent clip.
History On Its Side Since the Atlantic 10/Eastern 8 conducted its first conference tournament in 1977, only four tournament champions have finished with a sub-.500 record in league play the season after winning the conference title: Saint Joseph’s (3-13 in 1997-98), Rhode Island (2-14 in 199900), George Washington (5-11 in 2007-08) and Richmond (7-9 in 2011-12). Those four teams are also the only clubs to finish worse than 5th place in the conference standings in the season following a tournament title. The worst finish in the conference standings following a tournament championship is URI’s 12thplace finish (last) in 1999-00. GW finished 13th out of 14 teams in 2006-07.
Top 100 On The Same Club This year’s St. Bonaventure team could go down as one of the most prolific offensive squads – in terms of individual players – in program history. Currently four players are already on the top-100 scoring list in school history: Demitrius Conger: 1,049 – T-36th Michael Davenport: 795 – 60th Matthew Wright: 517 – 89th Eric Mosley: 450 – 100th Additionally, two players – Chris Johnson and Charlon Kloof – could join that group by the end of the year. Johnson has 431 career points, while Kloof has 312. If the duo reaches at least 442 career points this season, the 2012-13 team will become the first team since the 2005-06 squad with six of the top-100 all-time scorers. That 2005-06 team includes: Michael Lee (1,427 – 16th), Ahmad Smith (1,261 – 24th), Patrick Lottin (949 – 44th), Tyler Relph (754 – 62nd), Paul Williams (584 – 82nd) and A.J. Hawkins (524 – 87th). The last team to have seven players finish in the top-100 in scoring was the 1999-2000 NCAA Tournament club: J.R. Bremer (1,732 – 9th), Tim Winn (1,407 – 17th), Caswell Cyrus (1,121 – 27th), Patricio Prato (1,110 – 30th), Peter Van Paasen (978 – 39th) David Messiah Capers (972 – 41st) and Vidal Massiah (703 – 70th).
Next Up St. Bonaventure will have its first of two bye weeks as it will have a week off before returning to the Reilly Center next Saturday to face longtime rival Duquesne. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m., and the game will once again be televised regionally by Time Warner Sports.
Copies of the 2012-13 St. Bonaventure Men’s Basketball Fact Book are available on GoBonnies.com, with limited print copies distributed in media rooms and per request.
St. Bonaventure game notes for the Bonnies contest against Saint Louis on Jan. 26.