Curry entertains big crowd as Davidson takes win
By Joedy McCreary
Associated PressGREENSBORO ó Stephen Curry let both shots and passes fly from long range, first hitting a teammate with a perfect alley-oop. Moments later, he sliced across the lane and lofted a pretty flip shot with his left hand.
The nation’s leading scorer put on another show before a big crowd ó and while he refused to look too far ahead, he wouldn’t mind coming back next month.
Curry scored 29 points as Davidson beat UNC Greensboro 75-54 on Thursday night to move within one victory of matching the longest league winning streak in Southern Conference history.
The Wildcats made themselves right at home inside the Greensboro Coliseum, which usually seats 23,500 but was reconfigured for a listed sellout crowd of 11,687.
“Stephen is magnificent at taking what’s there,” Davidson coach Bob McKillop said. “He didn’t ooh and aah the crowd. The expectations that are put on his shoulder every time he steps on the court are extraordinary. I would venture to say that a significant reason for the crowd was Stephen Curry, as well as the Greensboro administration.
“He has now met this experience every place he’s gone in the Southern Conference. He handles it like a champ.”
Now, the darlings of last year’s NCAA tournament hope they’ll be back at the same arena next month to start another deep run through the bracket. Greensboro is one of eight first- and second-round host sites.
“We’ve got to learn from this experience,” Curry said. “If we get back, we’ll be comfortable playing here. But we don’t want to take that too far. If we get Greensboro again, it would be pretty fun.”
Curry had 18 points at halftime and hit the 20-point mark for the eighth straight game. Steve Rossiter had 14 points with 13 rebounds, and Andrew Lovedale added 12 points and 10 boards for the Wildcats (20-3, 13-0 SoCon).
Davidson claimed its 43rd straight victory in league play ó the longest active streak in Division I. With a win against the College of Charleston on Saturday night, Davidson will tie the SoCon record set by Jerry West-led West Virginia from 1956-60.
“We approach every game as an opportunity to get better,” McKillop said. “We had that last year, and it paid off pretty well for us.”
Among SoCon teams, only Appalachian State has held Curry in the teens. UNCG (3-18, 2-10) mixed a handful of defenders in its attempt to confuse Curry, who finished 10-for-24 and was just 4-for-12 from 3-point range.
The classic Curry highlights from this one came in the final minute of the first half. He heaved up an alley-oop pass that Max Paulhus Gosselin dunked with 43 seconds left. Curry then hit a left-handed flip shot to make it 37-24 at the break.
“A lot of people came to see Stephen play,” UNCG coach Mike Dement said. “He didn’t disappoint.”