Tiger Hoops Outstanding Season Goes to NCAA Tournament
SCOTT HARRIS, ASSISTANT SPORTS INFORMATION DIRECTOR
Tiger Basketball was back in rampant fashion for the 2012-13 season. H-SC finished the year with a 23-5 record and a 14-2 mark in the ODAC, advanced to the ODAC Tournament Semi-Finals, and earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament with the opportunity to host a first-round game. While the Tigers lost 80-78 to Cabrini in the Tournament's first round, the season should be defined as nothing short of successful.
The NCAA Tournament appearance was the first since 2007. This was the first 20-win season- and is the most in a season-since the Tigers went 25-5 in 2003-04. H-SC also held strong at home yet again, ending the year with a 12-2 record in Fleet Gymnasium. H-SC has lost two or fewer games at home each of the last three seasons.
This year's squad had numerous highlights. The year got started off on a high note when Hampden-Sydney defeated NCAA Division II school St. Augustine's 70-62 in an exhibition. St. Augustine's ended their year with a 16-12 record and advanced to their conference tournament quarterfinals.
H-SC went 7-1 in non-conference competition, including a win on the road at NCAA Tournament participant Wesley College. The Tigers also defeated both Huntingdon and Johns Hopkins to win the Bojangles Holiday Challenge.
The ODAC proved to be a battle game-in and game-out yet again this year with four teams representing the conference in the NCAA Tournament. The Tigers beat Randolph on the road 79-63, swept both regular season meetings against Randolph-Macon, and fell by one point to Virginia Wesleyan to end the regular season with a 4-1 mark against NCAA Tournament teams. The Tigers finished the year near the top of Division III in several statistical rankings. H-SC was second nationally in scoring margin (+18.6), sixth in assists per game (17.5), and eighth in field goal percentage (49.7%).
Senior Harrison George (right) earned First-Team All-ODAC for the third consecutive season. He also was named a Second-Team All-Region player by D3hoops.com, his third straight season on the All-Region Team. Additionally, the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) tabbed him as a Second-Team All-District performer. George concludes his outstanding four-year career as the school's fifth all-time leading scorer with 1,793 career points. He also ranks sixth in school history for career steals and career blocked shots.
Junior Khobi Williamson also garnered First-Team All-ODAC honors. Williamson led the ODAC in field goal percentage at 65.8%, a mark good enough to place him third in Division III. In ODAC-only games, he was the top free throw shooter in the conference at 87.5%, placed fourth in points per game at 16.1, and also ranked sixth in rebounds per game at 7.7.
Swim Season Review
MATTHEW A. JONES '14
The new men's swimming program finished its inaugural season with a solid win against Greensboro College and Randolph-Macon College. The Men's Invitational meet was hosted at the Greensboro Athletic Center by the Old Dominion Athletic Conference in conjunction with the Conference Women's Swimming Championship. The ODAC does not recognize men's swimming because there are not enough conference schools with an eligible program. As Hampden-Sydney's program continues, it will seek out a conference.
Throughout the year, H-SC co-hosted meets with Hollins University and Sweet Briar College, which allowed the single-sex programs to compete in dual meets. In their first full intercollegiate season, the Tigers swam to victories against Greensboro, Gallaudet, Davis & Elkins, and a first-place finish at the above mentioned ODAC Men's Invitational.
The Tigers were led by their Senior Captain Ke Shang who holds individual program records in the 100-yard backstroke (1:01.77), 100-yard butterfly (1:00.35), 200-yard butterfly (2:25.98), 200-yard IM (2:14.89), and 400-yard IM (4:55.35). The program will graduate two seniors in May, Shang and John Bishop. Both swimmers were founding members of the team and served as captains this year. The future of the program looks very promising with a class of 13 freshmen led by Andy Snow, Alton Brieske, Treavor Hartwell, and Ford Scott, who set individual records in their rookie seasons.
The swim team hosted U.S. Gold Medalist Jeff Rouse on December 14. Rouse won three gold medals and a silver medal at the 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games, setting world records in the backstroke, and is a member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame. Rouse spoke with the team sharing his Olympic experience and offering advice on succeeding in the pool, as well as in life.
During the winter break, Leggett Pool underwent extensive renovations to improve the facilities; these will allow Hampden-Sydney to host official meets next season. The improvements included a record board, an electronic scoreboard and timing system, starting blocks, new lap lanes, and repairs and improvements to the pool deck and observation deck.
Since Hampden-Sydney added swimming as the ninth NCAA Division III sport on October 28, 2011, the swim team has expanded from 14 to 20 swimmers. The H-SC swimming program is already a highly competitive program in the region.