In its final preseason warm-up, the 2010 -2011 Villanova men’s basketball team played an exhibition game on Tuesday night against the University of District of Columbia coached by Jeff Ruland (the former Sixers player and head coach of Iona). The game was played at the Wells Fargo Center.
The Cats have won 20 or more games for six consecutive seasons for the first time in program history, and the expectations for the new season are, as usual, very high. Among the returnees from last year’s 25- 8 team are three Seniors – Corey Fisher, Corey Stokes, & Antonio Pena. Also back from last year’s team are Sophomores Maalik Wayns, MouphYarou, Dominic Cheek, Isaiah Armwood, and Maurice Sutton. New to the team are Freshmen Jayvaughn Pinkston and James Bell (currently out recovering from surgery) and Junior walk-on Dallas Ouano.
Led by its dynamic backcourt, Villanova breezed to a 95-58 exhibition game victory over UDC. The trio of Maalik Wayns, Corey Stokes, and Corey Fisher combined for 60 points, with Wayns tallying 23, Stokes 20 and Fisher 17. The Cats also won the rebounding battle over the smaller UDC team by a resounding 58-23 margin. Antonio Pena pulled down 11 rebounds and Maurice Sutton had 9. Sutton added 5 blocks as well.
After momentarily trailing 6 -4, Villanova ran off twelve straight points to take control of the game. By halftime the lead had ballooned to 28 with the Cats ahead 50-22. At the intermission, Stokes had 17 points, Wayns had contributed 11, and Fisher 8. Leading rebounders in the first-half were Pena with 6 and Sutton with 5. For the visitors, Tim Ellison had 12 points. Ellison, the lone double-figure scorer for UDC, ended the night with 25 points.
With Wayns and Fisher leading the charge, Villanova began the second-half on a 23-6 run, building its lead to 45 points (73- 28) at the 11: 17 mark of the second-half. In all, nine players scored for Villanova. Dominic Cheek, Maurice Sutton, and Mouph Yarou each had 8 points. Pena finished with 7 and Isaaiah Armwood and Jayvaughn Pinkston each added 2 points.
The only sour note for the winning Wildcats was the 21 turnovers (14 in the second half) that they committed.
James Bell was on the bench but did not play as he recovers from surgery.