George Washington University put its offense into high gear last night, burying Hartford, 97-77, before 3,122 at Smith Center.
There was J. J. Hudock from the outside, Sonni Holland from the baseline and Dirkk Surles from almost everywhere.
There were rim-shaking dunks and an incredible three-point shooting display in the first half for the Colonials (3-2).
Was this the same team that lost to lowly Loyola (Md.) two weeks ago?
In the first half the Colonials shot 61.3 percent from the floor and made all seven three-point attempts.
The Hawks (2-3), from the North Atlantic Conference, shot 57.7 percent before halftime, but they were unable to keep up with the Colonials, who scored nine straight points early in the second half to build a 61-44 lead.
"It's nice to be home, facing friendly rims," said Colonials Coach Mike Jarvis, whose team upset Stanford and lost by two to Vanderbilt last weekend in Palo Alto, Calif. "The rims grabbed everything and took it in."
Hudock, a 6-foot-8 sophomore from Kinston, N.C., who was a medical redshirt last season, made all five of his three-point attempts in a 5:30 span early in the game and finished with 19 points as George Washington held a 48-40 halftime lead.
Surles, a sophomore guard averaging 21.2 points per game, shot 11 of 13 from the floor and had 25 points. Sophomore Holland accumulated 20 points and eight rebounds.
"They did a great job on offense and we played poorly defensively," Hartford Coach Jack Phelan said. "We're not a real good basketball team when a team shoots 60 percent on us."
Tied at 28 after 10 minutes, the Colonials scored 14 straight points to take a 42-28 lead. Surles had nine during the run, on a three-pointer, a thunderous alley-oop dunk from Alvin Pearsall, a tip-in and a fastbreak layup.
The Hawks, who lost to DePaul and Connecticut, got within 46-40 on a layup by Larry Griffiths (26 points) with 40 seconds left in the half. Holland converted an offensive rebound with four seconds to go and Hartford wouldn't be any closer.
"As well as we were shooting, we're only up eight at the half and I'm scared," Jarvis said. "I'm hoping we can shoot like that again in the second half."