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Armwood provides GW with added dimension
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On December 8, 2012 @ 8:00 pm In All,Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Nicole Auerbach, USA TODAY Sports
WASHINGTON – Isaiah Armwood walked into the post-game news conference after Kansas State edged his George Washington team 65-62 and looked at a stat sheet.
He’d known he’d been swatting at Wildcat shots all day, and he’d successfully deflected some. But even Armwood was wowed by his stat line: 12 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks.
“I didn’t know I had that many before I looked at this paper,” Armwood said, smiling. “It’s instincts — seeing if I can go get it. If they come into the lane, I’ve got a good chance to go for it. Plus, I go for a lot of them, too.
“I wouldn’t even consider myself a shot-blocker, but it happened.”
That’s not a bad way to describe the player himself. Armwood is “happening” right now. He’s under the radar a bit, since he plays on a 4-5 team outside one of the major conferences, but he’s definitely starting to make some noise.
The Villanova transfer scored a career-high 23 points against Manhattan a week ago, and he followed that up with what Kansas State coach Bruce Weber called “nearly a triple-double” Saturday afternoon at the Smith Center.
“He’s a big-time player,” Weber said. “He’s a tough matchup. If you go small on him, he’ll post you up. If you go big on him, they’ll step him out to the elbow and he rips and goes by people.
“He had some tip-ins and some big plays that made a difference for them. We knew, going into this one … it would be the tough matchup for us.”
Said Wildcats guard Angel Rodriguez: “It wasn’t that tough to get to the basket – it was tougher to finish. … It seemed like he was getting a touch on every ball in the air.”
GW coach Mike Lonergan appreciated Armwood’s shot-blocking and presence in the paint on Saturday, particularly because it helped cancel out some of K-State’s second and third chances. (The Wildcats had 24 offensive rebounds in the game.) But Lonergan knows Armwood’s value to his club goes beyond the numbers he’s putting up and key free throws here or there.
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