Tom Zamonski (@tomzamonski)
Nearly a third into the season, the only consistancy for a struggling Drexel squad has been inconsistency.
“Our better players haven’t been playing that good,” Bruiser Flint told CoBL, “…everyone has had their moments. We haven’t had anyone who has been consistently good.”
Drexel (3-7) is coming off a 69-58 loss to Fairfield. The defeat stripped the Dragons of stringing together back-to-back wins for the first time this season. Davidson (6-4, 2-0 Southern) enters the contest having knocked off another school in the CAA, UNCW, 77-61.
The Dragons will be back at the DAC for the second time this month–the previous visit was a Dec. 1 loss to Rider–and just the third time this season. Playing eight out of the first 10 games of the season away from the comforts of Philadelphia could be a reason for the early struggles, especially in game planning for Drexel.
“We got to prepare better, when we start preparing better we will carry that over into games,” Flint said. “We just haven’t done that to this point and hopefully we can get it started this week that way we can get back to playing the way we can play.”
In preparations for Davidson it all starts with a local product, Jake Cohen. Cohen, a citizen of Berwyn and a Conestoga grad, is one of the team captains for the Wildcats. The 6-10, 235-pound senior forward is the reigning SoCon Co-Player of the Year.
“He is a 6-10 guy who can play both inside and out,” Flint said. “He can do a lot of things.”
The Chester County native is a threat in all aspects of the game. Cohen is one of three players in school history with over 1,000 career points, 500 rebounds, and 100 blocked shots. He enters Saturday’s match averaging 12.3 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks a game.
“We know we have to be on top of him during pick and rolls. He is a good passer,” Flint said. “He is probably a better 3 point shooter than he is anything else. We have to be on top of him when he catches the ball. He can drive in on you. He can do a lot of things and he is big.”
Cohen is a 37.5 percent three point shooter and is converting 43.7 percent of shots from the field. He also dishes in 1.4 assists a game.
The forward is part of a front court tandem which sets the pace for the Wildcats on both ends of the court. Cohen and fellow forward, De’Mon Brooks, lead Davidson in points, rebounds, and blocks.
Brooks is a 6-7, 227 junior hailing from Charlotte, NC. He, similar to his front court mate, is the former SoCon Co-Player of the Year. Brooks was also an AP All-America Honorable Mention during his sophomore season. The highly decorated player was named the Mid-Major Freshman All-American by CollegeInsider.com during his first season with Davidson.
Brooks leads the Wildcats averaging 15.2 points and 6.8 boards a game. The junior is coming off a game in which he tied his career high with 12 rebounds.
The Dragons rank 251 in the nation in rebounding, collecting 33.2 per game, but Davidson has not been much better in pulling down the basketball. The Wildcats are 241 st in the nation by grabbing a total of 33.7 boards a game.
If Daryl McCoy and Dartaye Ruffin can stay out of foul trouble for Drexel, the Dragons could have an advantage on the glass. McCoy (7.8) and Ruffin (6.9) both average more boards a game than Davidson’s top rebounder, Brooks (6.8).
With a victory on Saturday, Drexel looks to secure its first home win of the season.
Drexel and Davidson will tip off at 8:00 on Saturday night at the DAC.