FACTS & STATS: Site: Levien Gymnasium (2,700) -- New York, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Marist 0-1, Columbia 1-0. Away Record: Marist 0-1, Columbia 1-0. Neutral Record: Marist 0-0, Columbia 0-0. Conference Record: Marist 0-0, Columbia 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: Two teams on the opposite ends of the spectrum through two games will meet up Saturday at Levien Gymnasium when the Marist Red Foxes take on the Columbia Lions.
This is the third straight game in the Empire State, for Marist. The Red Foxes will be hoping the third try is the charm as they enter play at 0-2. First, Marist dropped the season and home opener to Stony Brook (60-57) and followed that up with a 74-60 loss to Colgate. Marist heads south to Orlando for the Old Spice Classic next, beginning against West Virginia.
Columbia has had a much better go of things in its first pair of games. The Lions topped Furman on the road (68-47) and then in its home opener Tuesday night dispatched of Division III foe Haverford (74-40). Columbia will take part in the San Francisco Hilltop Challenge next weekend leading off with a matchup with Wayland Baptist from the NAIA level.
Surprisingly for a pair of schools separated by less than 80 miles, these teams have yet to meet up on the court.
Marist couldn't slow down Colgate in the first half and trailed 40-27 at the break in its most recent loss. The Red Foxes allowed the Raiders to net 55.2 percent of their shots in the first half including 5-of-7 from three-point range. Devin Price was the lead scorer for Marist in the game with 17 points while Adam Kemp finished with a double-double (15 points, 10 rebounds).
Offensive efficiency has been a weak point for the Red Foxes early on. Marist is connecting on only 38.2 percent of its shots through two games. Price has been one of the most guilty parties in contributing to the Marist shooting woes. Despite tying for a team-lead in scoring (13.5 ppg), the senior guard is shooting just 25.0 percent from the floor. Kemp meanwhile, has been much more effective in earning his 13.5 points per game. The junior forward is finishing 52.2 percent of his field goal attempts and also leads the Red Foxes in rebounding (11.0 pg). Jay Bowie (10.0 ppg, 5.5 rpg) is also scoring in double figures while providing solid assistance on the boards. Running the point for the Red Foxes is T.J. Curry (7.0 ppg, 4.5 apg).
The Lions led wire to wire against Haverford and never slowed down offensively. Columbia shot better than 50 percent in both halves and finished at 55.6 percent overall. The Lions had their way on the inside in the contest with a 46-14 edge in points in the paint and a 41-22 differential on the boards. Four players scored in double figures led by forward Alex Rosenberg, who did a bit of everything scoring 11 points, handing out six assists and grabbing four rebounds.
Rosenberg has been an early leader for Columbia topping the stat sheet in scoring (12.5 ppg) and rebounding (6.0 pg). Rosenberg's play has made up for a slow start from center Mark Cisco. Last season's leading rebounder has only 4.0 per game thus far but is still in the same neighborhood as last season scoring (9.5 ppg). Point guard Brian Barbour has taken on a dip in his scoring load (10.5 ppg) but is still proving to be a skilled distributor (6.0 apg). Barbour has also been a pest on defense collecting 3.0 steals per contest. Teaming with Barbour in the backcourt is Steve Frankoski. The sophomore guard has been a positive force especially on offense where he is scoring 11.0 points a contest.
There is a huge advantage for Columbia to exploit in this contest in the frontcourt. Kemp is a strong player but Marist lacks depth and size in the paint which will prove to be too big a weakness to overcome.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Columbia 65, Marist 56
11/17 10:36:38 ET
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