Youngstown State (1-0) at Georgia (1-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, November 12, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Stegeman Coliseum (10,523) -- Athens, Georgia. Television: ESPN U. Home Record: YSU 0-0, Georgia 1-0. Away Record: YSU 1-0, Georgia 0-0. Neutral Record: YSU 0-0, Georgia 0-0. Conference Record: YSU 0-0, Georgia 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: A pair of 1-0 teams will square off at Stegeman Coliseum in Athens this evening, as the Georgia Bulldogs entertain the Penguins of Youngstown State.
Youngstown State pulled off a tricky road win in its opener on Saturday, going to the nation's capital to take down George Washington, 80-73. It was a strong start for a Penguins squad that had a mediocre 2011-12 campaign with a 16-15 record overall and a 10-8 mark in the Horizon League,
Georgia tipped off its season at home on Friday night. It was in for more of a struggle than it had hoped going up against Jacksonville, but it was able to pull out the 68-62 victory. The Bulldogs have now won seven straight season openers.
This bout marks the first-ever meeting between Georgia and Youngstown State in men's basketball.
Youngstown State got out to a double-digit halftime lead over George Washington in the opener, and although they allowed the Colonials to tie the game with less than a minute remaining, it went on a 9-2 run down the stretch to secure the victory. The Penguins shot just 66.7 percent from the free-throw line, but it took persistent effort to get to the hoop all night as they attempted 36 foul shots. The team set a school-record with 270 three-pointers last season, and it drained six triples against GW. Freshman Bobby Hain came off the bench in his first career game to record a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds. Senior Blake Allen also tallied 19 points and dropped four three-pointers. D.J. Cole added to the impressive bench effort with 12 points, but he also committed six turnovers. Rounding out the double-digit scorers were Damian Eargle (11 points) and Shawn Amiker (10 points). Kendrick Perry, the Penguins leading scorer from a year ago (16.8 ppg), struggled mightily by going 0-of-9 from the field and he finished with just three points.
It's always good to open with a win as Georgia did, but it did not play very well in the process, as head coach Mark Fox stated following the game. The team was out of sync for most of the contest, as it connecting on just 40.8 percent of its field goal attempts (including 4-of-19 from three-point range) while committing 23 turnovers. The saving grace for the Bulldogs was the fact that their opponent simply wasn't very good, as Jacksonville also shot poorly (37.7 percent) and turned the ball over often (21 turnovers). Kentavious Caldwell-Pope tallied a game-high 17 points and logged five steals. Although he was just 3-of-12 from the field, he was able to do a lot of damage at the free-throw line (10-of-12). Nemanja Djurisic tallied his second career double- double with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Vincent Williams had just four points, but he dished out six assists.
Youngstown State has proven that it can win on the road, even though Georgia comes from a loaded SEC, it is simply not a very good team. It'll be a tight battle, but figure for it to be the Penguins who move to 2-0.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Youngstown State 70, Georgia 67
11/12 10:39:40 ET