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11/1/2011 | Allen Arena, Nashville Tenn. | Attendance: 2018
Monday, October 31, 2011
Popcorn will be popping, sodas will be fizzing and fans will be cheering. The question is how the Lipscomb Bisons basketball team will react.
Tuesday night at Allen Arena the Bisons will pay Freed-Hardeman University in an exhibition game. Lipscomb coach Scott Sanderson, starting his 13th season with the Bisons, has faced Freed-Hardeman every season except last year.
“We want to learn what our guys can and can’t do in a game setting,” Sanderson said. “I know what they can and can’t do in practice. I want to see what they can do with people in the stands.”
Sanderson stresses he will be watching all of his players, but he will be taking a long look at the play of forward Malcolm Smith and power forward Marvin Williams, both freshmen.
“The two news guys that I really want to see what they can do with people in the stands are probably Marvin Williams and Malcolm Smith,” Sanderson said. “I want to see in a game setting if they can think and play the game the way we have practiced.”
Zavion Williams, a freshman point guard, will also be under scrutiny by the coaching staff.
“Zavion is critical,” Sanderson said. “We want to see how he controls our team offensively, how he controls our team defensively and how does he control the tempo of the game.
“We are asking him to do a lot. We are asking him to play the most important position on the floor. I think he can handle it.”
Williams is a talented player, but Sanderson is quick to point out that there is more to the freshman’s game.
“The one word I describe Zavion is `winner’,” Sanderson said. “He might make mistakes and might do some things that are not great plays from time to time. But you know, when it is all said and done, that he is a winner. He is going to try to do to the best of his ability what we ask him to do.”
This is the first game of the 2011-2012 season for the Bisons. Fans will quickly notice a difference in the style of play.
“We are going to press more,” Sanderson said. “Fans are going to see more transition baskets…more fast breaks. If it is up to us we are going to be up and down the floor a lot.
“We have four of five guys who can really guard the ball. Our biggest thing is we have to learn how to defend the ball without fouling. You can defend the ball, but fouling negates hustle.”
The last time the two teams met was Nov. 5, 2009. The Bisons won 88-59.
“We have a great crowd,” Sanderson said. “We have people at this game that might not normally come out for games. It is a good thing.”