IUPU-Fort Wayne (2-2) vs. Tennessee Tech (2-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, November 17, 2 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: American Bank Center (8,156) -- Corpus Christi, Texas. Television: None. Home Record: IPFW 1-0, TTU 1-0. Away Record: IPFW 0-2, TTU 1-1. Neutral Record: IPFW 1-0, TTU 0-1. Conference Record: IPFW 0-0, TTU 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: After both teams won on Saturday, the IUPU-Fort Wayne Mastodons and the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles will attempt to close out the Islanders Basketball Tournament in style on Sunday afternoon at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.
After falling in the opening round of the tournament to host team Texas A&M- Corpus Christi on a last-second field goal on Friday night, IPFW got back on track and pulled even at 2-2 on the season with a 66-60 triumph over Texas-Pan American on Saturday. The Mastodons led the majority of the way, and even though they allowed the Broncs to tie the game with under five minutes to play, they went on a quick 5-0 run to go back up and never looked back. They won despite shooting a lackluster 36.5 percent from the field, although Luis Jacobo managed to overcome his teammates' struggles by logging 24 points on 7- of-13 from the field off the bench in his season debut. Joe Reed was also solid in a reserve role, tallying a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
TTU also fell victim late on Friday night (81-78 to UTPA), but it too evened its season record at 2-2 following a Saturday victory over TXA&M-CC (62-60). The Golden Eagles nearly blew it down the stretch, as their 11-point lead dwindled to two with 15 seconds left, but even after Dennis Ogbe missed a pair of free throws, they avoided another last-second make at the buzzer when Hameed Ali's jumper did not fall. Pacing the effort was Dwan Caldwell, who netted 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds before fouling out. Javon McKay and Josiah Moore were the only other players in double digits in the win.
IPFW and TTU have never before faced each other on the hardwood.
Despite owning a .500 record, IPFW boasts some impressive numbers with a +8.0 scoring margin, a +5.0 rebounding margin and a +1.3 turnover margin. Jacobo's return to the lineup will bring even more balance to a squad that has several legitimate scoring options. Steve Forbes (13.0 ppg) has been on fire in the early going, making 20-of-26 from the field (.769). Reed (11.5 ppg), rips down a team-best 6.8 rebounds per game, while Pierre Bland (10.5 ppg, 4.5 apg), Isaiah McCray (9.3 ppg), Joe Edwards (8.8 ppg) and Michael Kibiloski (8.0 ppg) are also off to solid starts.
The Golden Eagles are netting 69.0 points per game on 44.5 percent field goal shooting this season, but unfortunately they allow their opponents to score even more (70.5 ppg). Ty Allen is the only player to average in double figures with 14.5 points per game, but he has been cold from 3-point range (6-of-22, .273). Jeremia Samarrippas, Ladon Carter and Moore all score between 8.2 and 9.5 points per game, while Ogbe grabs 8.0 rebounds per contest.
Both teams showed something in bouncing back on Saturday, but with Jacobo back in the lineup, IPFW is the more well-rounded team and should be able to end this tournament on a positive note.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: IUPU-Fort Wayne 72, Tennessee Tech 66
11/17 10:34:26 ET