Men’s basketball show improvements in Warner’s second season as coach

Saints Coach Chad Warner talks to his team during a timeout in Florence, South Carolina in a game at Francis Marion University. Photo: Dustin Fletcher

By Dustin Fletcher |

On March 2, the Saints men’s basketball team left another losing season in the rearview mirror.

The team lost on their senior day for the second straight year, putting them at 8-20 for the season.

While that record can look off-putting, the team was in games late, and consistently put themselves in a position to win in the last five minutes.

The Saints averaged 75.4 points per game, while their opponents averaged 80.5. This means that most games were extremely close, and the Peach Belt Conference is incredibly competitive each year.

This year, the Peach Belt had three teams in the regional top 10. The Saints nearly outplayed their opposition in every category this year, but they were not able to cut down on turnovers. They averaged nearly six more turnovers than their opposition per game.

Looking ahead to the 2019-2020 season, the Saints are losing just three players. While there will be a huge hole in the locker room with seniors Vaughan McCall, Jeffercy Jean and Phil Bruce all graduating, the team has some incredible young talent available to them.

Redshirt freshman forward Lawrence Slim has incredible length and can spread the floor with his shooting. True freshmen Collin Blanchard, Logan Swackhammer and Gedi Juozapaitis should be able to help take the burden off of the upperclassmen in 2019-2020.

Next year’s team will have four seniors, Damerit Brown, Demari Davis, Kris Totoris and Gloire Biongo.

The team should take more strides forward next season, and it will be on the players’ incredible work ethic in the offseason.

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