William & Mary used a dominant 30-9 first-half run to build a double-digit lead, and hit 17-of-18 free throws in the second half to subdue a flurry of JMU 3-pointers. When it was all said and done, the Tribe was on the right side of a 79-64 bout, and positioned for a Sunday Semis rematch with the Hofstra Pride.
The Tribe shot 63.3% (19-of-30) from inside the arc, as Omar Prewitt (25 points) and Co. successfully finished a bevy of backdoor cuts. Prewitt found himself matched up with smaller defenders on switches, and did a great job of taking advantage of the mismatches.
Sean Sheldon (11 points) and David Cohn (10 points) chipped in efficient offense. The bench, particularly Connor Burchfield and Jack Whitman, provided a huge spark. Burchfield connected on all four of his attempts from the field, including three 3-pointers, and Whitman hit a few buckets in the Tribe’s first half run.
JMU made things interesting in the second half, as Joey McLean (13 points) hit a trio of threes, including two back-to-back buckets that got JMU within seven with 5:45 to play. JMU managed to pull within five with 1:36 to go, but was seemingly sapped of all momentum when McLean was whistled for his fifth foul on an inbounds play thereafter.
JMU senior Ron Curry tallied 20 points, but needed 19 shots and 10 free-throw attempts to get there.
Sean Sheldon indicated in the presser that playing JMU the week prior gave the Tribe a good idea of what JMU would try to do defensively. The Tribe shredded the JMU defense en route to 1.16 points per possession.
W&M will look advance to the CAA Finals for the third consecutive season.