Texas State (4-14) at Texas-San Antonio (4-12)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 19, 5 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Convocation Center (2,650) -- San Antonio, Texas. Television: TWC. Home Record: Texas State 3-7, UTSA 1-4. Away Record: Texas State 0-5, UTSA 2-7. Neutral Record: Texas State 1-2, UTSA 1-1. Conference Record: Texas State 0-6, UTSA 0-6. Series Record: Texas-San Antonio leads, 31-22.
GAME NOTES: Former members of the Southland Conference get together on Saturday, as the Texas State Bobcats pay a visit to the Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners in a Western Athletic Conference battle at the Convocation Center.
Unfortunately, both teams have found the transition to their new league rather difficult as they remain the only WAC programs still without a conference victory through six games respectively.
At this stage the Bobcats have gone without a win of any kind for about six weeks, last tasting victory on Dec. 8 versus Texas-Pan American (73-58). Since then the team has suffered through nine straight defeats, the latest coming a week ago versus Texas-Arlington, 91-74. Overall, the Bobcats are 4-14 and winless in five opportunities on the road.
As for the Mavericks, they began the 2012-13 campaign with three wins in four tries, but since then have won only once versus Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (75-45) on Dec. 21. Also out of action since last weekend, UTSA almost broke through versus Louisiana Tech at home before taking the 73-71 setback, the sixth in a row and the 11th in 12 outings.
In terms of the all-time series, UTSA is ahead by a count of 31-22. However, the most recent meeting last season went to the Bobcats by a score of 66-52.
Joel Wright scored a game-high 24 points for Texas State last weekend, hitting all four of his 3-point tries, but just 4-of-9 at the free-throw line, as the Bobcats went down hard against UTA at home. Deonte' Jones accounted for another 21 points as he too shot well from beyond the arc (5-of-9), but only one other player was even able to make as many as three total field goals for Texas State in the double-digit setback. Over the course of six conference games, Wright has been the go-to guy for offense, averaging 18.3 ppg, thanks in large part to his efforts at the free-throw line where he is 35-of-46. Compared to the rest of the team, Wright has made the charity stripe his home as no other player has attempted more than nine shots at the line in conference play and they've all combined to hit a mere 22-of-41.
Limiting themselves to just two players off the bench, the Mavericks leaned heavily on Kannon Burrage last week against LaTech and he responded with a career-high 29 points, shooting 9-of-20 from the floor and a perfect 9-of-9 at the free-throw line, but it wasn't enough to keep the team from landing in the loss column yet again. Jordan Sims added 16 points and Hyjii Thomas 14 as the team connected on an impressive 20-of-23 at the charity stripe in the losing cause. Part of the problem for the squad is that they played without Jeromie Hill (13.3 ppg, 6.6 rpg) who is suffering from a bruised left knee at the moment and is still listed as questionable for this weekend's affair. With Hill out of the lineup, that leaves just Burrage (17.4 ppg) and Michael Hale III (13.6 ppg) as the only active double-digit scorers on the season and both have seen their averages dip when it comes to conference play.
Being outscored by 12 ppg in conference play has made it difficult for the Mavericks to be competitive, but being at home this weekend should give them the lift they need to take out the Bobcats.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Texas-San Antonio 66, Texas State 62
01/19 10:41:18 ET