This article originally appeared online Jan. 12, 2012 and
was written Buffalo News Senior Sports Columnist Jerry Sullivan
following the Bonnies' 81-73 win over Dayton at the Reilly Center
in which Andrew Nicholson finished with 30 points, 13 rebounds and
OLEAN -- I had heard the excuses. Andrew Nicholson faces a steady diet of double-teams. He won't force shots. His teammates aren't giving him a lot of help. Foul trouble has cut into his playing time.
But there was no excusing the fact that Nicholson's scoring average had taken a dive this season -- from 20.8 points a game as a junior to 14.1 entering Wednesday's game against Dayton. Among returning D-I players who finished in the top 100 in scoring a year ago, that's easily the biggest drop in the country.
Nicholson is the best big man to play in the Big 4 in years, a Wooden Award nominee, the star of a St. Bonaventure team picked to finish fourth in the Atlantic 10. So with the Bonnies hosting a hot Dayton team at the Reilly Center, it was time for their 6-9 senior to start living up to his reputation as the best big man in the A-10.
Consider it done.
Nicholson played his best game of the season, scoring a season-high 30 points as the Bonnies defeated the Flyers, 81-73. Nicholson was magnificent at both ends, finishing with 13 rebounds and six blocked shots (season highs), plus two steals.
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