Louisiana Tech (23-6) at UAB (18-10)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, March 2, 4 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Bartow Arena (8,508) -- Birmingham, Alabama. Television: None. Home Record: Louisiana Tech 13-1, UAB 12-3. Away Record: Louisiana Tech 7-4, UAB 5-5. Neutral Record: Louisiana Tech 3-1, UAB 1-2. Conference Record: Louisiana Tech 11-3, UAB 7-7. Series Record: UAB leads, 4-0.
GAME NOTES: The UAB Blazers have won three straight games, but have quite the challenging fight ahead for their fourth consecutive victory as they host the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs in a Conference USA bout at Bartow Arena.
Louisiana Tech has won two games in a row following a loss to East Carolina back on Feb. 20. The Bulldogs have won six of their last seven overall, including a 55-39 defensive battle over Middle Tennessee on Thursday. At 11-3 in the conference standings, Louisiana Tech is in the conversation for a top overall seed once the conference tournament starts.
UAB has won three in a row and four of its last five contests. The Blazers defeated Rice by a narrow 61-60 margin on Thursday night to improve to 7-7 in the conference standings.
UAB is a perfect 4-0 in the all-time series with Louisiana Tech. This is the first time this season the two teams will meet on the court. Every single game in the series has been played at Bartow Arena.
In a low-scoring game on Thursday, Louisiana Tech held visiting Middle Tennessee to just 35.4 percent shooting from the floor and to just 39 points in the game. Jaron Johnson netted 15 points to pace the Bulldogs, while Alex Hamilton chipped in with 12 points and six rebounds. Kenneth Smith dished out a team-high nine assists in the win, in which the Bulldogs shot 46.7 percent from the floor.
Raheem Appleby played five minutes in a return from injury against Middle Tennessee, and didn't record a point. His team-leading scoring average from when he went down over 10 games ago still stands at 15.1 ppg. Hamilton is second on the squad in scoring with a 14.8 ppg average, and he's hit exactly twice as many free throws as the second-place Bulldogs player. Hamilton has netted 142 shots from the charity stripe, while Chris Anderson (11.6 ppg) has hit 71. Michale Kyser leads the Bulldogs with 6.5 rpg, and Smith has dished out a team-best 220 assists on the year.
UAB was able to escape against Rice on Thursday night after Chad Frazier hit a baseline layup as time expired to give the Blazers a one-point victory. Frazier finished the game with a team-leading 17 points and six assists, while Fahro Alihodzic chipped in 11 points and eight rebounds. The Blazers shot just 36.2 percent from the floor, and hit 1-of-8 from 3-point distance in the contest.
Frazier leads the team in scoring this season with an 18 ppg average, adding a team-best 126 assists and 30 steals to his stat line. Frazier has also turned the ball over 108 times on the year. C.J. Washington is second in scoring at 13.5 ppg, and owns a team-best 7.1 rpg mark. Rod Rucker is the third and final player to average a point total in the double digits, netting 10.8 ppg this season.
UAB has always had the Bulldogs' number, but Louisiana Tech is a strong, well- rounded squad this season and is making a push for the conference's top spot. It might be hard for the Blazers to keep up with Louisiana Tech's torrid 82.2 ppg scoring pace.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Louisiana Tech 79, UAB 70
03/02 10:34:02 ET