By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The regular season is in the books for the Drexel Dragons. Of course, it didn’t go according to plan for the preseason pick to win the CAA, as Drexel is just 13-17. But this weekend the Dragons can erase all that disappointment with three straight wins as they open play in the CAA Tournament in Richmond, Virginia.
“We sort of pushed that from the beginning,” Drexel head coach Bruiser Flint tells KYW Newsradio. “We just haven’t had the season that we thought we were going to have. When we first started out, we said, ‘Hey guys, after last year (getting denied an NCAA Tourney berth) y’all know what it’s all about. It’s about getting yourself into the (NCAA) tournament and getting yourself into the tournament by winning three games in the conference tournament.’ So that’s what it has come down to.”
The Dragons are the #5 seed in the tournament, and they will open things up on Saturday with a match-up against the #4 seed George Mason. These teams split their two regular-season match-ups.
“It’s going to be a tough game,” Flint says. “Both games were played the same, they got up on us at their place, we came back and beat them (58-54 on January 31st). We got up on them at our place, they came back and beat us (68-62 on Valentine’s Day). They’re probably the deepest team in the league from one to ten.”
Flint says how long his team can extend the season will probably come down to a simple concept.
“It’s scoring enough points,” Flint says. “If you just look at us overall, since the new year, it’s all been about our shooting. I think we’ve played better defensively, we’ve handled the ball. We were averaging over 14, 15 turnovers before Christmas. We averaged ten in (league play). It’s all going to come down to how well we shoot the ball. I’m not saying we have to be on fire, but we can’t continually shoot 35%, 36%, every night.”
The winner of Drexel/George Mason will play top-seed Northeastern in the semifinals on Sunday. The Huskies received the only bye in this year’s tournament.
The Dragons and Patriots will tip-off at 3:30pm on Saturday.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.