Northern Arizona (2-3) vs. Cal State Bakersfield (4-1)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 29, 7:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Save Mart Center (15,596) -- Fresno, California. Television: None. Home Record: NAU 1-0, CSUB 4-0. Away Record: NAU 1-3, CSUB 0-1. Neutral Record: NAU 0-0, CSUB 0-0. Conference Record: NAU 0-0, CSUB 0-0. Series Record: Northern Arizona leads, 4-2.
GAME NOTES: Cal State Bakersfield will try to stretch its winning streak to five games, as the Roadrunners battle the Northern Arizona Lumberjacks on Friday as part of the Fresno State Classic.
The Roadrunners, whose wins during this run have all come at home, are coming off a 71-69 decision over Idaho State last Saturday. Javonte Maynor had 21 points on 7-of-10 shooting from 3-point range, Brandon Barnes 13 and Zachf Lamb 10. The Roadrunners shot 50 percent from the field and held Idaho State to just 39 percent.
Bakersfield has just one current player, Maynor (10.0 ppg), averaging double figures in scoring, although senior forward Issiah Grayson (9.0 ppg) and junior center Abdul Ahmed (9.0 ppg) are both close behind. Ahmed, who took a red-shirt last season, has scored at least 12 points in three of the first five games this season. Barnes, the team's top returning scorer from last season, has struggled so far with only a 6.6 ppg average. He is also firing at only 56.3 percent from the charity stripe.
Besides Tyrell Corbin and Stefon Johnson as starters, the Roadrunners have plenty of depth. Lamb averages 7.4 ppg and comes exclusively off the bench. Erik Kinney is shooting 64.3 percent from the field for a team that averages 74.4 points, which is more than 11 better than opponents.
Northern Arizona hasn't played since last Saturday's 83-59 thrashing of San Diego Christian. Max Jacobsen had 15 points to lead four NAU players in double figures. The Lumberjacks shot 56.1 percent from the field, which is well above their 43.4 percent average for the season.
Max Jacobsen, the lone senior on the NAU roster, paces the team in scoring with an average of 18.2 per game. He's shooting a stellar 59.4 percent from the field. Jacobsen and junior guard Quinton Upshur (16.6 ppg) are the only two players to have posted double figures in every game this season. Starting point guard Aaseem Dixon (12.6 ppg), a junior transfer, is the team's third- leading scorer. Dixon is also tied with Dixon for first on the team in made 3- pointers with 13.
The Lumberjacks will take on Drake tomorrow in the tournament and Fresno State on Sunday. Bakersfield battles Fresno State Saturday and Drake Sunday.
The Roadrunners are well balanced offensively, and that should bode well playing against a team that was picked to finish seventh by the media and ninth by the coaches in the Big Sky Conference. NAU is shooting less than 30 percent from 3-point range, while Bakersfield is making 44.2 percent from beyond the arc. That should play a big role in the outcome of this contest.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: CS Bakersfield 73, Northern Arizona 70
11/29 10:51:10 ET