Georgia Southern (12-12) at The Citadel (4-20)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 11th, 7:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: McAlister Fieldhouse (6,000) -- Charleston, South Carolina. Television: None. Home Record: GSU 9-1, Citadel 3-8. Away Record: GSU 3-11, Citadel 0-11. Neutral Record: GSU 0-0, Citadel 1-1. Conference Record: GSU 10-4, Citadel 1-12. Series Record: GSU leads, 21-20.
GAME NOTES: Georgia Southern will look to keep the good times rolling tonight in Charleston, when the Eagles square off against the Citadel at McAlister Fieldhouse in a Southern Conference tilt.
Georgia Southern has posted victories in six of its last eight outings, including four straight. The squads most recent success came in the form of a 63-49 decision over Wofford, evening the Eagles overall tally at 12-12, and giving the club 10 wins in SoCon action.
As for the Citadel, the Bulldogs are at the completely opposite end of the spectrum, and enter tonight's affair with just four wins to show for their 2011-12 campaign. The club has lost nine straight, including a 77-66 setback against Davidson on Thursday night that left the Bulldogs with a meager 1-12 mark in league play.
GSU owns a slight 21-20 edge in the all-time series between the two programs, and took a 78-72 verdict in a double-overtime thriller with the Bulldogs back on January 23rd.
With a 47.2 team shooting percentage, the Eagles tally 66.9 points per game this season. GSU has knocked down a respectable 36.5 percent of its attempts from beyond the arc, but has surprisingly struggled at the foul line with a meager 66.5 percent conversion rate. At the other end of the court, the Eagles have yielded 67.8 ppg to the opposition via a 45.9 percent shooting pace, and the squad has forced just 363 turnovers through 24 contests compared to 373 of their own miscues. Eric Ferguson leads the way for GSU on the season, tallying 15.4 points to go with 7.3 rebounds per contest. Ben Drayton joins him in double figures with an 11.8 ppg tally, while Willie Powers and Jelani Hewitt net 10.9 and 10.8 ppg, respectively, this year. In their last outing, the Eagles shot at an impressive 48.0 percent clip that included a 7-of-13 effort from long range. GSU held the Terriers to just 40.4 percent from the field (3- of-16 three-pointers), and forced a game-high 10 turnovers as well. Ferguson finished with a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds to pace GSU in the victory, while Powers and Drayton chipped in 14 and 12 points, respectively, with the former also responsible for seven boards.
The Bulldogs managed a meager 39.1 percent from the floor, including just 3 of-18 from beyond the arc, during the 11-point loss to Davidson. The Bulldogs struggled at the foul line as well during the meeting, converting an underwhelming 13-of-21 free throws. The Citadel didn't fare very well at the other end of the court either, as the Wildcats shot at a 46.2 percent clip and made good on 9-of-21 from long range. The Bulldogs lost the battle of the boards by a 44-35 margin as well, but the squad did manage to force a game- high 17 turnovers. Mike Groselle finished with a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds to lead the way for the Citadel, while Bo Holston chipped in 11 points in a losing effort. The Citadel has struggled at both ends of the court this season, tallying just 66.1 ppg while yielding 74.8 ppg to its adversaries. The Bulldogs are shooting just 43.8 percent from the floor as a team, which includes a meager 33.3 percent rate from long range. Just one player has achieved a double-digit scoring average this year, as Groselle leads the way with a 17.2 ppg in addition to a team-best 9.5 rpg mark.
Expect the Eagles to run away with this one. The Citadel simply cannot contend at either end of the court with GSU, which should earn a satisfying and decisive road triumph.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia Southern 79, The Citadel 61
02/11 10:49:20 ET