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2012-13 Men's Hoops Outlook: Point Guards
As the Liberty men's basketball team prepares for its Nov. 9 season opener at Richmond, LibertyFlames.com will provide a four-part preview of the 2012-13 season. Today's article provides a look at the Flames' trio of point guards.
For the first time in four years, Liberty will have a new director running the show at the point guard position. While it won't be an easy task to fill the role recently held by Liberty's all-time assist leader Jesse Sanders, the Flames' roster possesses a number of players willing to accept the challenge.
Davon Marshall, junior college transfer from Monroe, is expected to be the Flames' first option. This past season, Marshall led the Mustangs in scoring, averaging 15.6 ppg. In addition to his 546 tallies on the season, Marshall also paced Monroe in three-point field goals, hitting 102-of-223 shots (45.7 percent) from downtown.
Marshall's performance during the 2011-12 campaign helped guide the Mustangs to a fifth-place finish at the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division I Men's Basketball National Tournament. The Niagara Falls, N.Y., native averaged 19.8 points during the four-day event, earning a spot on the NJCAA All-Tournament team.
"Davon is very experienced and plays two different positions" Layer said. "He played on the third-best junior college team at the point and shooting guard positions. He is a guy that brings toughness, leadership and the ability to score the ball in many ways."
Another option at the No. 1 spot is freshman Larry Taylor. Regarded as a flashy player at the point, Taylor was a four-year letterwinner at North Port High School. The Englewood, Fla., native closed out his high school career averaging 25 points, five assists, four steals and three rebounds per game. The 2011-12 Florida Athletic Coaches Association and Sun Area Player of the Year, Taylor closed out his tenure at North Port setting records for points in a game (37), career steals and career assists.
"Larry is a team guy, who had a stellar high school career" Layer stated. "He is a pure point guard, who understands the game. He can score the ball and pass it. I like his feel for how he plays and how he fits our offense."
A returner who continues to improve his game, Kelly Assinesi is also expected to see playing time at point guard. Toward the end of last season, Assinesi's minutes increased, as he played a reliever role for Sanders.
"Kelly continued to improve all last year and trend upward," Layer noted. "He is a team guy who wants to compete and win. He's a guy who has really improved and could be in the mix at point guard."