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Contact: Mark DeCotis, Athletic Communications
Rejuvenated Daytona State Awaits EFSC Men's Basketball
Nov. 5, 2013 - It's time to get down to business for the Eastern Florida State College men's basketball team.
With its Saturday's season-opening 109-56 victory against Webber International's junior varsity behind it the Titans will lace their shoes a little tighter as the visit a rejuvenated Daytona State College team at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Daytona Beach.
A night later the Titans open their home season with a 7 p.m. tip-off against Lackawanna College of Scranton, PA, an NJCAA Division II team that won its season-opener by 64 points.
Admission to Eastern Florida home games is free.
"We are hoping for a great crowd for our home opener," Eastern Florida head coach Jeremy Shulman said. "Fans will be treated to high-quality basketball all season and we'll get things rolling on Thursday. I really hope the community will come out and pack the gym."
That the NJCAA Division I Titans are facing stern competition this early in the season is no accident. Bucking the wisdom of some programs that schedule early-season softies Shulman sought out the big guys to prepare his team for the tough Florida College System Activities Association Southern Conference schedule that begins on Jan. 8.
Daytona State's Falcons opened their season with a 112-79 victory against visiting Game on Rise Academy of Ocala as they attempt to rebound from last season's 6-25 record. Under new head coach Ryan Ridder and with a roster loaded with talented new players, the Falcons are ranked sixth in the FCSAA Coaches Poll, one spot behind the Titans.
They will challenge Eastern Florida in the frontcourt with 6-foot, 8-inch sophomore forward Rashaun Stimage, who scored 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the opener. The Titans will respond with 6-8 sophomore forward Jure Gunjina, who scored a team-high 26 points against Webber, 6-7 forward Mike Kirkland, who had eight rebounds, and 6-9 forward Shaheed Davis, who had four blocked shots.
In the backcourt the Titans trio of sophomore co-captains 6-3 Ben Patrick, 5-11 Torrance Rowe and 6-3 T.J. Cromer will be countered by 6-4 sophomore guard Dylan Poston, who also scored 25 points in the opener, 6-5 freshman guard Tanksley Efianayi, who scored 18 and 6-foot freshman guard Paris Clayton who scored 17.
As for Lackawanna, also the Falcons, three players stood out in its opener: Demante McNeill scored 27 points, grabbed seven rebounds and recorded five assists; Tom O'Brien scored 24 points and recorded 11 assists; and Jaylon Sims scored 21 points and grabbed 27 rebounds.
The Titans next see action at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12 as they host Pasco-Hernando Community College in the second game of a doubleheader in the Melbourne Campus gym. The Titans women's team plays its home opener at 5:30 p.m. against the Webber at 5:30 p.m.