FACTS & STATS: Site: Memorial Coliseum (5,800) -- Fort Wayne, Indiana. Television: None. Home Record: UMKC 2-7, IPFW 7-1. Away Record: UMKC 2-6, IPFW 1-10. Neutral Record: UMKC 1-1, IPFW 1-0. Conference Record: UMKC 2-5, IPFW 2-4. Series Record: IUPU-Fort Wayne leads, 6-5.
GAME NOTES: The UMKC Kangaroos will end their road swing with a visit to Memorial Coliseum for a Summit League collision with the IUPU-Fort Wayne Mastodons.
IPFW holds a narrow 6-5 all-time series lead versus UMKC. The Mastodons defeated the Kangaroos, 76-73, in the last meeting to propel into last season's Summit League Tournament.
UMKC is coming off of an 81-68 loss to Oakland, marking its 10th setback in 11 games. The Kangaroos have sunk to a 2-5 Summit League standing with their recent slump. Poor defensive play is the root of the struggles as UMKC has allowed its last three opponents to shoot at least 53 percent from the floor. In the last five games, two players are averaging in double-digits points, Estan Tyler (16.3) and Thomas Staton (11.6). The �Roos have shot .484 from the floor during the stretch, but have allowed .525 percent field goal accuracy to their opposition.
Tyler tallied 20 points after hitting 4-of-7 from beyond the arc in his last outing, but it was not enough and the 'Roos lost by 13 points to the Golden Grizzlies. The contest went into the intermission tied up at 33, but Oakland converted 46.2 percent of its field goal attempts and 19-of-24 at the charity stripe to coast away. Junior center Fred Chatmon has been in foul trouble in two consecutive games, something he will need to avoid due to his tremendous presence on the boards (7.2 rpg).
The Mastodons ended a two-game losing slide on Thursday with a 62-60 decision over South Dakota. The triumph bumped IPFW up to a 9-11 overall record and 2-4 mark in conference play. It managed to overcome a 2-of-15 showing from 3-point range by outscoring the Coyotes in the paint, 38-26. Frank Gaines scored 14 points, Luis Jacobo added 13 points, and Joe Edwards chipped in 12 off the bench. Although Gaines led the squad in scoring, he went 4-of-16 from the field and missed all five of his 3-point attempts.
IPFW is slightly better on the offensive end than the visitors as it posts 65.6 ppg. The team's biggest strength is on the boards, as it leads the Summit League with 36.2 rebounds per tilt. Gaines is in a slump right now from distance as he is 2-of-15 from beyond the arc over his past three games. Regardless, the senior guard has been a consistent net scorcher this season, scoring 18.5 ppg. Jacobo joins him in double-figures scoring with 11 ppg, while Mario Hines provides an inside presence with 8.5 points and 5.8 rebounds per game.
IPFW is nearly perfect at home this season, making an end to UMKC's misery unlikely. The 'Roos will have a chance if Gaines' cold streak continues to plague him.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: IUPU-Fort Wayne 66, UMKC 59
01/19 10:37:35 ET
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