Stacy Beckton Jr.’s new normal
The sophomore’s game is already significantly better than last season
It was a night to remember as sophomore guard Stacy Beckton Jr. helped lead AU (2-1) to a 68-44 win against the University of New Hampshire on Nov. 16. He stood out during the Friday night game, coming off the bench and scoring 12 points, a new career-high.
Beckton, who is averaging six points a game this season, shot 5-8 from the field and 2-4 from the three-point line in only 20 minutes of playing time. Eight of his points came from the first half alone, where he was able to connect on his two 3-pointers. He added on to his impressive offensive performance with an assist.
Beckton attacked the rim hard and had a solid dunk coming off of an assist from freshman forward Josh Alexander. In addition, he took good, open jump shots. Even though he finished with only one assist, Beckton helped move the ball well and kept the Eagles’ offense flowing.
“Stacy has a good feel for the game,” said head coach Mike Brennan. “He’s got good instincts and he can really pass the ball and get other people shots. He’s been coming along. He is coachable and works a lot.”
Defensively, Beckton had a strong presence as well. He locked down the players he was guarding and finished the game with three blocks (another career-high for him) and six rebounds. His quick hands disrupted the opposing team’s offensive momentum.
“We saw last year when he came in as a freshman that he could really help us on the court,” said junior guard Sa’eed Nelson. “This year I think he’s stepping into that role a lot offensively and defensively.”
Beckton, who stands at 6 feet and 4 inches and weighs 186 pounds, had a rough season last year. In his freshman year, Beckton averaged only 4.3 points per game, with his highest scoring game being only 11 points. He shooting percentage last year was only 29.5 percent as opposed to 43.8 percent so far this season.
Beckton’s prospects for the season are already higher than last year, and his teammates are taking notice.
“He looks a lot more comfortable,” said senior guard Larry Motuzis. “I knew Stacy could shoot and is obviously very athletic. I think the biggest thing for him this year is that he’s very comfortable.”
Beckton provided a spark off the bench against New Hampshire and will look to do it all over again in AU’s next game on Nov. 24 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. The team will play at home again on Nov. 30 against Wagner College.