Chris Fouch is starting to resemble the player who led the Dragons in scoring last year.
And, not coincidentally, Drexel is beginning to look more like the team everyone expected at the beginning of the season.
Fouch scored 14 points, including a key layup with 1 minute, 54 seconds remaining, to lead Drexel to their third straight win, 73-68, over Bradley on Saturday at the DAC.
It was closer than it should have been, as the Dragons coughed up a 17-point advantage with nine minutes left that created some tense, late-game moments and left coach Bruiser Flint fuming.
"The game shouldn't have been that close," Flint said.
But the Dragons got the large lead in large part because Fouch, a 6-foot-2 junior guard, is nearing full health. He missed the first four games due to offseason surgery on his left knee, and scored eight points combined in his first two games back, a pair of losses that dropped Drexel to 2-4.
But he has averaged 20.3 points in the Dragons' last three wins, helping Drexel look more like the team that was picked to finish first in a difficult Colonial Athletic Association that sent Virginia Commonwealth the Final Four last season.
"Yeah, definitely, that's all we talked about was getting back into Drexel form, making stops and executing on offense," Fouch said. "We've been doing a good job the last few games."
Samme Givens led the Dragons (5-4) with 17 points, all of which came after halftime, to go with 10 rebounds. Givens has noticed more space on the interior of late.
"Chris plays an integral part of our offense," Givens said. "Definitely since he came back our offense is a little better. Defenses can't crowd the middle. And now we're making shots. We're playing our game."
Flint was steamed that Drexel let Bradley (5-5) climb out of 58-41 hole with 9:15 left to tie it at 65-all with 2:31 remaining.
Flint said the Dragons need to learn how to put games away.
"[They] got to get a little killer in them," he said of his team. "I don't know if we always have that all the time. We'll learn from it."
Fouch admitted that the Dragons took their foot off the pedal.
"That's one of our biggest problems," he said. "When we get a team down by a certain amount of points, we let up."