FACTS & STATS: Site: Draddy Gym (3,000) -- Riverdale, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Saint Peter's 4-7, Manhattan 3-3. Away Record: Saint Peter's 3-6, Manhattan 3-10. Neutral Record: Saint Peter's 0-1, Manhattan 0-2. Conference Record: Saint Peter's 2-9, Manhattan 4-7. Series Record: Manhattan leads, 69-48.
GAME NOTES: Tied with the Marist Red Foxes for last place in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference standings heading into the weekend, the Saint Peter's Peacocks turn their attention to the Manhattan Jaspers against whom they will face on Sunday afternoon at Draddy Gym.
The Peacocks have won only twice in 11 conference outings this season, but one of those triumphs came three nights ago against the Red Foxes at home in overtime, 70-68. The decision snapped a lengthy eight-game slide by the squad.
As for the Jaspers, they show up on Sunday tied with Siena for the seventh spot in the MAAC with a league ledger of 4-7. Manhattan played on Friday night against those same Saints and came up short in a 66-63 final on the road, the team's fourth loss in the last five games.
Manhattan won the first meeting of the season last month with a narrow 55-53 final on the road as Shane Richards tallied a game-high 16 points off the bench for the visitors, hitting 4-of-9 shots behind the 3-point line. With the victory at the Yanitelli Center, the Jaspers now lead the all-time series by a count of 69-48, winning three straight meetings against the Peacocks.
Desi Washington shot 6-of-11 behind the 3-point line against Marist, finishing with 26 points as he helped lift the Peacocks to the two-point overtime win earlier this week. Also scoring in double figures for Saint Peter's was Karee Ferguson with 16 points off the bench, followed by Darius Conley with 14 points before he fouled out. Defensively, the Peacocks held the visitors to just 5-of-20 shooting beyond the arc and forced 21 turnovers. Saint Peter's, which has had a different leading scorer in each of the last four games, is generating only 60.4 ppg over the course of 21 outings. The biggest issue for the group takes place at the free-throw line where they are a dismal 59.2 percent accurate, compared to 71.2 percent for the opposition. Washington, who accounts for 54 of the squad's 102 3-pointers on the season, leads the way with 14.3 ppg.
Trailing by as many as 13 points with just eight minutes remaining in regulation, the Jaspers showed some fight down the stretch against Siena on Friday night, but just didn't have enough left in the tank. Michael Alvarado scored a team-best 16 points, shooting 8-of-9 at the free-throw line, adding five assists and four rebounds in the setback. Rhamel Brown checked in with 13 points and Shane Richards 11 and seven boards, as the team shot only 38.9 percent from the floor and 7-of-20 behind the 3-point line. Like the Peacocks, Manhattan has had a mix of leading scorers the last several weeks, much of that due to the fact that the Jaspers lost George Beamon (16.8 ppg) so early in the campaign. Brown is currently the only active double-digit scorer for the group with his 11.5 ppg, adding 6.8 rpg and a total of 57 blocked shots. However, the notable drawback to having him on the floor is that he is shooting a ridiculously low 37.9 percent (47-of-124) at the free-throw line.
Having Brown on the floor in pressure situations is not good for the Jaspers, but he is also one of the only reliable scorers for the group so Manhattan is caught between a rock and a hard place. With the offense struggling so much, the Jaspers just don't have enough of a supporting cast to get them over the hump these days, but against the Peacocks that might not be a problem.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Manhattan 61, Saint Peter's 56
02/03 10:30:22 ET
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