The Citadel (3-13) at Georgia Southern (8-10)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 19, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Hanner Fieldhouse (4,358) -- Statesboro, Georgia Television: None. Home Record: The Citadel 3-6, GSU 5-2. Away Record: The Citadel 0-7, GSU 2-7. Neutral Record: The Citadel 0-0, GSU 1-1. Conference Record: The Citadel 0-6, GSU 2-3. Series Record: Georgia Southern leads, 28-19.
GAME NOTES: Georgia Southern aims for its third consecutive victory when the Eagles host a struggling Citadel squad that hasn't won in over two months and is winless in Southern Conference play.
The Bulldogs have endured a 12-game losing streak and haven't won since Nov. 17 against Union (KY). Since then, the Bulldogs have had their share of blowout losses and also tight games. The contest they played on Thursday night at Davidson was anything but close, as the Wildcats ran all over The Citadel in a 70-38 final. Matt Van Scyoc scored a team-high eight points for The Citadel, but he turned the ball over seven times. Mike Groselle grabbed nine rebounds to go along with seven points in defeat.
Groselle, who leads the Bulldogs with 13.8 points and 7.8 rebounds, is in a double-double drought. Since Dec. 15 against Gardner-Webb, when Groselle posted his 25th career double-double, the center has broken into double figures just four times and has yanked down at least 10 rebounds only one time. The current eight-game run is the longest that Groselle has gone without attaining a double-double (points, rebounds) in his career since he became a full-time starter on Jan. 13, 2011.
The Citadel is scoring just 62.2 ppg and giving up 74.6 ppg, which is the second-most in the SoCon. They team is also being outscored by a hefty 12.4 ppg and is allowing opponents to shoot 46.7 percent from the field, which is the worst mark in the league. Aside from Groselle, Van Scyoc (11.1) is the only other player averaging double digits in points.
The Eagles are coming off back-to-back home wins against Davidson and the College of Charleston. On Thursday, C.J. Reed finished with 14 points to lead Georgia Southern over the CofC, 51-47. Cleon Roberts added 12 points, and Eric Ferguson chipped in 11 for the Eagles.
Georgia Southern has a well-balanced scoring attack, led by Ferguson (14.4 ppg, 7.6 rpg), C.J. Reed (11.7 ppg) and Tre' Bussey (10.7 ppg). Roberts (8.2 ppg) is also part of the starting lineup on a team that is averaging barely over 60 points a game. On the positive side, the defense of the Eagles is allowing only 63.1 ppg, which is third-best in the conference. The perimeter defense has been especially effective, as the Eagles are allowing opponents to shoot barely over 30 percent from beyond the arc. But Georgia Southern is making only 5.4 long-distance shots per game, which is tied for the lowest mark in the SoCon.
With respect to the all-time series, Georgia Southern has a 28-19 lead, but was forced to overtime in winning both games last season. The Eagles should have an easier time in this contest, especially if they can keep Groselle off the glass.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia Southern 67, The Citadel 56
01/19 10:40:05 ET