IUPUI (1-3) at Northwestern (2-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 22, 8 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Welsh-Ryan Arena (8,117) -- Evanston, Illinois. Television: BTDN. Home Record: IUPUI 1-2, Northwestern 1-1. Away Record: IUPUI 0-1, Northwestern 1-1. Neutral Record: IUPUI 0-0, Northwestern 0-0. Conference Record: IUPUI 0-0, Northwestern 0-0. Series Record: IUPUI leads, 1-0.
GAMES NOTES: The Northwestern Wildcats will try to put together their first win streak of the season when they bring in the IUPUI Jaguars for a non- conference clash at Welsh-Ryan Arena as part of the Las Vegas Invitational.
The Jaguars put an end to a streak of losses last time out as they earned their first win of the year with an 88-53 rout of NAIA foe IU Northwest. IUPUI had lost three straight games to open the campaign prior to that victory. Up next for the Jaguars in another road clash against a power conference squad as they face Missouri in Columbia.
Northwestern coasted to a 93-58 victory over cross-town foe Illinois-Chicago on Wednesday to put an end to a two-game slide. The Wildcats had suffered setbacks against Stanford (71-58) and Illinois State (68-64) in the two previous contests after earning a 72-55 victory over Eastern Illinois to kick off the season. Northwestern hosts Gardner-Webb on Monday as part of the next leg of the Invitational.
IUPUI won the only other meeting between these teams with a 56-53 triumph at Welsh-Ryan Arena in 2002.
Against IU Northwest the Jaguars completely dominated, doubling up their foes in points in the paint (32-16), while holding them to just 24.2 percent shooting. Justus Stanback scored 15 points off the bench to lead five scorers in double figures for the Jaguars in the win.
Scoring hasn't really been the issue for the Jaguars this season. In fact at 75 points per game they are actually enjoying a positive scoring differential (+3.2) despite having a losing record. Ian Chiles (19.2 ppg) is normally the player carrying the load offensively. Chiles had only 11 points against IU Northwest but he had back-to-back 20-point efforts in the two previous game all while shooting at a 45.2 percent clip from the field. Mitch Patton (16.3 ppg, 7.7 rpg) is the second of three double figure scorers on the team and the second in line behind Chiles. Patton had 10 points and seven rebounds against IU Northwest. Khufu Najee (13.5 ppg) is another reliable scorer, while Marcellus Barksdale (4.5 ppg, 7.8 rpg) is an effective rebounder.
En route to their largest margin of victory on the road since 1944, the Wildcats knocked down 11-of-20 shots from beyond the arc and hit 60.8 percent from the floor overall against UIC. Dave Sobolewski led the way with 25 points on 9-of-14 shooting, including a 4-of-8 showing from 3-point range.
Although they cannot expect to score 90 points every time out the Wildcats have been doing a solid job on offense. They have scored a healthy 71.8 points per game while shooting 45.1 percent from the field. The Wildcats are adept from 3-point range as well hitting 36-of-88 attempts from beyond the arc as a team. Sobolewski (11.3 ppg) is one of the team's better 3-point shooters but he is far from the top offensive option. That role belongs to Drew Crawford (17.8 ppg, 7.5 rpg), who leads the team ins coring and has also dropped in 11- of-20 shots from 3-point range. Crawford may not have had a career-high, as Sobolewski did against UIC, but he still managed 18 points. JerShon Cobb (13.8 ppg) and Tre Demps (10.0 ppg) provide scoring depth as well.
Getting Chiles back on track offensively will be a tough task against the Wildcats, who are holding teams to 37.3 percent shooting. Without a consistent offensive threat the Jaguars will struggle to keep up with Crawford and company.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Northwestern 76, IUPUI 61
11/22 10:35:41 ET