Monday, December 15, 2008

CHN Player of the Week, Dec. 15

Player of the Week: Dionte Christmas, Temple

The second week of December is normally a fairly slow week in the college basketball world. Colleges and universities around the country are ending their semesters and final exams are being taken by the student-athletes. After several weeks of tournaments and big-time match-ups, though, it was a nice change of pace for those who needed to catch their breath and/or get some holiday shopping done. Therefore, there were only a few marquee games throughout the week – but it still left plenty of opportunities for some of the top players to put up outstanding performances.

Several of the usual suspects had big games this past week, including A.J. Abrams, who helped lead Texas to a solid win over Villanova and then hold off Texas State. Of course, Stephen Curry had another standout week, averaging 34 points, four rebounds and eight assists per game in two Davidson wins. Xavier’s C.J. Anderson and Derrick Brown both had double-doubles in a road win over Cincinnati, while Ricky Harris of Massachusetts had 18 points in the Minutemen’s win at Kansas. You also can’t forget Ben Woodside of North Dakota State, who poured in 60 points in a loss to Stephen F. Austin on Friday and followed that up with a 31-point, 10-assist performance in a win over Georgia Southern Saturday.

The most impressive showing of the week, though, has to go to Temple’s Dionte Christmas. The 6-5 senior shooting guard scored 35 points, grabbed two rebounds, dished out two assists and also had three steals as the Owls dismantled No.8-ranked Tennessee, 88-72. Christmas hit seven three-pointers and shot 12-of-22 from the field overall. He really came alive in the second half, hitting six of his aforementioned seven threes, and 10 of his 12 field goals. Furthermore, he had a stretch where he knocked down three consecutive three-point attempts to help the Owls’ lead balloon back to 15. After scoring just two points a week ago at Penn State, Christmas bounced back in a big way, and might have helped turn Temple’s season around. On the year, Christmas is averaging 21.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game.

- A.J. Abrams, Texas
- Ben Woodside, North Dakota State
- Stephen Curry, Davidson

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