Manhattan (3-2) at Hofstra (2-4)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, November 30, 4 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Mack Sports Complex (5,023) -- Hempstead, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Manhattan 0-2, Hofstra 1-1. Away Record: Manhattan 3-0, Hofstra 0-2. Neutral Record: Manhattan 0-0, Hofstra 1-1. Conference Record: Manhattan 0-0, Hofstra 0-0. Series Record: Manhattan leads, 39-22.
GAME NOTES: Joe Mihalich faces off against a familiar foe this afternoon, as the head coach of Hofstra leads the Pride into a meeting with Manhattan at the Mack Sports Complex.
Mihalich, who is in his first year with Hofstra, was previously the head coach at Niagara which competed against Manhattan year in and year out in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, so he is quite familiar with the Jaspers. Hofstra is getting back into action for the first time in nearly a week, having lost to Belmont in the Hall of Fame Tipoff in Connecticut last Sunday, 85-75.
As for the Jaspers, a team which has yet to win at home but is 3-0 on the road, they bowed for the second time in the last three outings on Tuesday when they suffered a 79-75 setback to Fordham at Draddy Gym.
In terms of the all-time series between these two programs from the Empire State, Manhattan leads by a count of 39-22, thanks in part to a 67-56 at home last season. This marks the eighth straight season that the teams will collide on the hardwood.
George Beamon scored 24 points and pulled down 11 rebounds for the Jaspers earlier this week as they entertained the Fordham Rams, but his effort went for naught as the team suffered another home loss. Beamon shot just 7-of-21 from the floor, including 2-of-11 behind the 3-point line where the team as a whole was a mere 6-of-32 (.188). Before fouling out, Rhamel Brown pitched in with 12 points, seven rebounds and a staggering nine blocked shots. Already the school's all-time leader for career blocked shots, Brown's effort versus Fordham established a new single-game record.
Brown (8.8 ppg), who is averaging 7.4 rpg to rank second on the team behind Beamon's 8.2 rpg, now has 21 rejections over five games, accounting for all but eight of the team's total to this point. Beamon continues to be one of the nation's top scorers with 26.8 ppg, followed by Shane Richards who is the only other double-digit scorer for the Jaspers with 10.6 ppg, his production coming as a reserve exclusively.
Zeke Upshaw scored a game-high 25 points, shooting 6-of-12 beyond the arc for the Pride, but still the team took the double-digit loss versus Belmont at Mohegan Sun Arena. Upshaw, who knocked down 8-of-18 from the floor overall, also pulled down seven rebounds, which was second only to teammate Stephen Nwaukoni who came off the bench to tally 16 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting from the field. Jordan Allen chipped in 11 points before fouling out and Jamall Robinson 10.
Shooting 42.1 percent from beyond the arc at this stage, Upshaw is scoring a team-best 20.0 ppg, followed by Dion Nesmith who supplements his 13.5 ppg with a team-best 21 assists, but at the same time he has been charged with 27 turnovers. As a group Hofstra, which is giving up an even 80.0 ppg, is averaging only a shade over 11 apg but at the same time turning the ball over more than 15 times per outing.
With Beamon on the attack the Jaspers have the upper hand in this meeting, especially since Manhattan seems to perform better on the road than it does at home.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Manhattan 82, Hofstra 71
11/30 10:37:28 ET