Central Michigan (6-3) at Dayton (7-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, December 14, 7 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: UD Arena (13,455) -- Dayton, Ohio. Television: TWC. Home Record: CMU 4-2, Dayton 4-0. Away Record: CMU 2-1, Dayton 1-1. Neutral Record: CMU 0-0, Dayton 2-1. Conference Record: CMU 0-0, Dayton 0-0. Series Record: Dayton leads, 3-0.
GAME NOTES: The Dayton Flyers try to continue their home dominance and stop Central Michigan's four-game winning streak when the two teams meet in a non- conference matchup on Saturday night.
The Flyers, who will start a five-game homestand that ends on New Year's Day against Winthrop, have won seven straight at home dating back to last season. That includes a 4-0 mark this season. What's even more dominant is Dayton has amassed an 18-1 mark at home against Mid-American Conference foes over the last 14 seasons.
Although the Flyers suffered an 81-75 loss at Illinois State a week ago, the month of December has proven to yield success for the team. Dayton is 37-8 in the 12th month over the last seven years.
That defeat dropped Dayton out of the AP poll. The Flyers, who were No. 25 in the rankings, got 13 points and four rebounds from Vee Sanford. Jordan Sibert had 13 points and six boards for the Flyers, who turned the ball over 18 times and had their modest two-game win streak stopped.
The Flyers are a well-balanced squad offensively, as five players average at least 8.4 points. Sibert (13.6 ppg), Devin Oliver (12.2 ppg) and Sanford (10.0 ppg) lead the charge for a team that nets 74.9 ppg while allowing 67.0 ppg. Of particular concern is Dayton's struggles at the charity stripe. The Flyers are making 69.1 percent of their attempts, but only 61.6 percent over the last five contests.
The Chippewas, who are playing the second leg of a three-game road trip, scored a 65-64 win at SIU Edwardsville a week ago. Chris Fowler hit the game- winning shot with 6.2 seconds left. The sophomore guard, who leads the squad with 16.9 points per contest, also has a team-best 5.1 assists per game, which ranks third in the MAC. He's also fourth in field goal percentage (.593) in the MAC. Forwards John Simons (11.6) and Blake Hibbitts (9.6 ppg) are also in the starting lineup, which includes guards Austin Stewart and Austin Keel (8.8 ppg). Braylon Rayson, a 5-foot-9 freshman guard, is the top producer off the bench at 8.9 ppg. CMU has struggled shooting from beyond the arc (.294).
Dayton has won all three meetings, but the Flyers and Chippewas haven't faced each other since Dec. 7, 2005. Expect UD to flex its muscle inside with Oliver, who has scored in double figures in five of his last seven games. The leading rebounder and free-throw shooter for the Flyers will likely cause problems for Central Michigan.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Dayton 83, Central Michigan 68
12/14 10:33:01 ET