Sunday, February 04, 2007

Charlotte Observer article

No worries, thanks to Curry
Wildcats freshman scores 29 points, fuels critical run

DAVIDSON - Stephen Curry threw UNC Greensboro for a loop in Davidson's 75-65 win

The Davidson freshman scored 29 points and hit seven 3-pointers, two during a loop around the court that dazzled his teammates, coach and opponents.

UNC Greensboro standout Kyle Hines' free throw cut Davidson's lead to 57-51 with about 10 minutes left. But the Wildcats hustled the ball up to Curry, who sank a 3-pointer along the right baseline.

"I saw my man leaking out when I took the shot," Curry said. "I knew I had to hustle back."

Curry sprinted to the other end of the court and stole a long bounce pass under the basket to thwart a breakaway lay-up. Curry shifted the ball to his left hand, pushed it up the court and pulled up for a 3-pointer along the left baseline.

The shot fell, and Curry had turned the game in Davidson's favor (20-4, 11-1 Southern) in 12 seconds.

"That's as magical a sequence as I've ever seen," Davidson coach Bob McKillop said.

It gave Davidson a 63-51 lead, and Curry playfully stuck out his tongue to the Davidson student section as he bounced around the court. UNC Greensboro (12-10, 9-3) never got within 10 points after that.

"To be honest with you, Curry is a lock for (conference) freshman of the year, but he might be the player of the year too," UNC Greensboro coach Mike Dement said.

That statement came with UNC Greensboro star Kyle Hines, who leads the league in scoring and rebounding, sitting next to his coach. But Hines, who scored 14 points in the first half, helping UNC Greensboro take a four-point halftime lead, faded after that.

Hines scored four points after halftime and struggled to shoot over Davidson forward Boris Meno, who scored 20 points for the Wildcats.

Point guard Jason Richards also stepped up in the second half. Richards had 14 of his 17 points after halftime, and along with Curry, contributed to the decisive run.

Richards had the first eight points of the Wildcats' 17-2 run that gave Davidson a 65-51 lead, but Curry had the final eight, including the spectacular six-point stretch.

"For a freshman to do something like that is just unheard of," Richards said. "But (those plays) really got us going."

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