The spotlight has a way of always finding RMU's Lee
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Tony Lee's name turns up often on the Robert Morris leader board.
The senior guard leads the Colonials in rebounds (7.3 per game), assists (7.6) and steals (3.3) and he's second in scoring (14.3).
"Tony Lee's awesome," coach Mike Rice said.
- Matchup: Lafayette (8-3) vs. Robert Morris (7-5), 7 p.m. today, Sewall Center, Moon.
- Radio, Internet: WPIT-AM (730), www.sports.yahoo.com
- Lafayette: Picked to finish eighth in Patriot League, which is where it finished last season (9-21, 3-12). ... Has won three consecutive games and seven of its past eight. ... Shoots an average of 25.3 3-point attempts a game. Shooting 42.1 percent from beyond arc. ... Junior G Andrew Brown (18.0 ppg) is 40 for 80 from beyond arc, including 15 of 24 in his past two games. ... Averaging 79.1 ppg and allowing 72.5.
- Robert Morris: Junior G Jeremy Chappell has 979 career points and tonight could become the Colonials' 19th career 1,000-point scorer. ... G Tony Lee (1,197 points) needs eight points to pass Andre Boyd (1,204) and move into 10th place on RMU career scoring list. ... G Jimmy Langhurst is 13 for 20 from 3-point range in past three games. ... Has shot only 17 free throws in past two games.
- Hidden stat: Robert Morris has held its past six opponents to 30.6 percent (38 of 124) shooting from beyond arc.
However, Lee also leads the Colonials in turnovers (5.0).
Yep, there's that annoying part of his game, too.
"Tony just can't stay 'awesome,"' Rice said. "He has to be the best. If Tony would cut down on some of his jump passes, some of the little things that he does ... I tell him every day, it's a constant battle, Tony has to improve."
Lee added seven turnovers to his total Friday in the Colonials' 86-70 loss at Duquesne. Some of those happened when he drove into the lane and went into the air looking to pass and found nobody.
"I know I do it, and I do know when I do it it's going to be a turnover," Lee said.
Lee once more drew Rice's ire at Duquesne. But he wasn't alone.
The Colonials had 25 turnovers, matching their season high.
"There was no execution and there wasn't any discipline," Rice fumed after his team fell to 7-5. "We penetrate to pass, and how many times did we penetrate and put up a terrible shot?
"I give a lot of credit to players like Tony and A.J. [Jackson] for our success so far this year, but those two were the key culprits. Those two probably have the biggest room for improvement on our team."
Lee, Jackson and their teammates, who are 3-4 in games in which they commit at least 20 turnovers, have a quick turnaround in their quest to cut down on their turnovers.
Tonight, the Colonials play Lafayette (8-3) at the Sewall Center. The Leopards pose a different problem than did Duquesne and its frenetic, pressing defense and up-tempo offense.
"The exact opposite," Rice said. "[Lafayette is] a half-court team that takes 25 to 30 seconds off the shot clock each possession. We're going to have to be more disciplined in every aspect of our game."
That improved discipline is something Rice wants to see as the Colonials near the start of the bulk of their Northeast Conference schedule. They play Monmouth at home Thursday.
"I talk about potential with our team," Rice said. "It scares me everyday. I know the potential of this team. We're supposed to be good, and we are good.
"Now bringing that out every single game, every single possession, every single practice, it's a challenge with them because this team lacks a consistent focus and purpose. They don't lack much of anything on the court."
Rice also has tried to develop some depth, but that also appears a work in progress -- without there having been much progress.
Against Duquesne, the Colonials bench produced just nine points and seven rebounds in 47 minutes.
"We had no depth," Rice said. "It was shaky at best. We had no depth because they either played with no purpose or played scared. I'm not sure what it was, but we'll have to go back to the drawing board."
Lafayette is in the middle of playing eight consecutive games on the road. The Leopards follow up their game tonight with a test at Pitt Wednesday night.
The Leopards last played Dec. 21, winning 76-72 at Mount St. Mary's, another NEC member.
First Published December 30, 2007 12:00 am