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Dayton Flyers head home after successful trip

Flyers are 4-2 with three home games coming up next

The Dayton Flyers escaped their business-trip philosophy on the final night of their trip to California.

A group of players, including senior guard Kyle Davis, rode roller coasters at Disneyland. Graduate assistant managers Brian Frank and Ben Sander posed for a photo with Chewbacca at Disneyland. Senior point guard Scoochie Smith ate at a popular Los Angeles restaurant chain, Roscoe’s House of Chicken and Waffles.

Dayton flew home to Ohio after finishing 2-1 at the Wooden Legacy. In beating Portland and New Mexico, the Flyers did not record the type of RPI-boosting victories they earned last season when they beat Monmouth and Iowa, but it’s hard to find fault with a team that stands at 4-2 despite playing all season without senior forward Kendall Pollard and the last three games without the team’s other top post player, Josh Cunningham.

“It’s hard to beat a together team that’s willin to sell out for each other every day,” Davis wrote on Twitter. “Love this team.”

Here’s a recap of the three games in the Golden State and a summary of where the Flyers stand halfway through the non-conference schedule:

Best performance: Senior guard Charles Cooke averaged 16.3 points per game in the Wooden Legacy. He leads the team in scoring (19.7) and rebounds (6.0).

Most improved: Sophomore forward Xeyrius Williams averaged 12.7 points in the three games. He entered the tournament having scored two points in the first three games.

Most memorable moment: The dunk by Davis with eight seconds remaining Sunday punctuated a 64-57 victory over New Mexico and ended an 8-0 run that started with two free throws by Cooke with 45 seconds left.

Trending up: Dayton shot 69.6 percent at the free-throw line in the three games, improving its season percentage to 68.1. The Flyers shot 66.8 percent at the line last season.

Inconsistent stat: Dayton shot 6 of 22 from 3-point range against Saint Mary’s and 6 of 22 against New Mexico. In between those two games, it shot the ball well from long range, making 10 of 24 against Nebraska and 10 of 22 against Portland.

On the season, the Flyers are shooting 38.6 percent behind the arc. Last season, it shot 34.7. Sam Miller has been the most improved shooter. He has made 8 of 17 3-pointers (47.1 percent).

Best Tweet: After the victory Sunday, Williams wrote, “I looked at (Ryan Mikesell) and said, ‘It’s winning time!’ Glad we got the W.”

Big picture: The Flyers will be heavy favorites in their next three games, all at UD Arena. They play Winthrop (3-2) at 2 p.m. Saturday. Then they play a Division II school, Saint Joseph’s College (4-2), of Indiana, at 7 p.m. Dec. 6. At 2 p.m. Dec. 10, they play East Tennessee State (5-1).

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