Eastern Washington (5-4) at Seton Hall (7-4)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, December 22, 5 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Prudential Center (18,711) -- Newark, New Jersey.
Television: FS1. Home Record: EWU 3-1, Seton Hall 5-2. Away Record: EWU 0-3,
Seton Hall 1-1. Neutral Record: EWU 2-0, Seton Hall 1-1. Conference Record:
EWU 0-0, Seton Hall 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: The Seton Hall Pirates will continue their four-game homestand on
Sunday afternoon when they welcome the Eastern Washington Eagles to the
EWU has started the season a solid 5-4, but it has been trending in the wrong
direction in recent weeks with losses in three of its last four. The Eagles
most recently dropped a 70-61 home matchup with UC Irvine on Dec. 15, and now
they head back out on the road where they have gone 0-3.
Seton Hall is also coming off a loss, as it fell on the wrong end of a 83-80
overtime bout versus Saint Peter's on Dec. 14. The setback snapped a three-
game winning streak for the Pirates, who are 7-4 on the season, including 5-2
This contest marks the first-ever meeting between the Eagles and the Pirates
in men's basketball.
Although EWU led at the half of its latest game, it fell victim to a 14-3 UCI
run at the start of the second stanza and could never fully recover. It was a
lackluster shooting effort for the home team, as it made good on just 33.3
percent of its field goal tries and struggled from the free-throw line as well
(10-of-19). Tyler Harvey finished with a game-high 15 points, but he did so on
just 4-of-15 from the floor. Parker Kelly added 13 points, Drew Brandon
stuffed the stat sheet with 12 points, eight rebounds and six assists and
Ognjen Miljkovic came off the bench to score 12 points.
It was a rare performance for the Eagles, who shoot nearly 47 percent from the
field this season (with 8.2 3-pointers per contest) on their way to 77.4
points per game, 5.1 points more than they allow. Harvey (19.7 ppg) is one of
the Big Sky Conference's most potent scorers, and he ranks in the top-30
nationally in 3-pointers (33) despite his team playing just nine games. Venky
Jois (13.7 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 1.4 rpg) is a force in the paint, and Brandon brings
11.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.9 assists per game.
Trailing by three points in the waning seconds of regulation, Seton Hall
received a dramatic 3-pointer from Brian Oliver to force overtime, but in the
extra session it fell on the opposite end of that fate, as Desi Washington
delivered a game-winning bucket from long range for Saint Peter's with five
seconds to play. Oliver was outstanding in spite of the setback, scoring 26
points on 8-of-15 from the field (including 5-of-9 from beyond the arc) to go
with 10 rebounds. Eugene Teague also tallied a double-double with 14 points
and 11 rebounds, Brandon Mobley just missed one with nine points and nine
boards, and Sterling Gibbs came off the bench to net 17 points on 9-of-9 from
the free-throw line.
The Pirates have displayed solid offensive production all season, as they
score 76.7 points per game by making 7.7 3-pointers and 22.1 free throws per
game. Even though he shoots less than 40 percent from the field, Gibbs (16.1
ppg) ranks second in the nation with 95 made free throws (on 84.8 percent
efficiency). Oliver (11.4 ppg) adds to the scoring efficiency. With Fuquan
Edwin (13.8 ppg) and Patrik Auda (12.0 ppg) both missing from action recently,
Teague (9.6 ppg, 9.3 rpg) and Mobley (9.1 ppg) have been asked to step up
Seton Hall showed with a shorthanded squad in its latest game that it is
vulnerable, even on its home floor, but with EWU struggling on the road and
having to travel across the country for this matchup, expect the Pirates to
get back on the winning track.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Seton Hall 82, Eastern Washington 73
12/22 10:37:18 ET
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