Cornell (0-12) at St. Bonaventure (9-4)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 4, 2 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Reilly Center (5,780) -- St. Bonaventure, New York. Television: NBCSN. Home Record: Cornell 0-5, St. Bonnies 5-0. Away Record: Cornell 0-7, St. Bonnies 2-3. Neutral Record: Cornell 0-0, St. Bonnies 2-1. Conference Record: Cornell 0-0, St. Bonnies 0-0. Series Record: Cornell leads, 8-6.
GAME NOTES: The last Division I program yet to break into the win column gives it another go this afternoon, as the Cornell Big Red go up against the Bonnies of St. Bonaventure in non-conference action at the Reilly Center.
Not only has Cornell failed to log a win in 2013-14, the team's losing streak has now been stretched to 18 in a row after dropping six straight down the stretch last season. The program might have a chance to get into the win column next weekend with a meeting against Oberlin, but for now they have to follow up a 67-59 setback to Saint Peter's last weekend with a meeting against the Bonnies today.
As for St. Bonaventure, it has won two straight and three of the last four outings on the schedule thanks to an 80-73 victory versus Delaware on Monday at home. The squad, which has one more game remaining on this homestand versus Richmond in the Atlantic 10 opener next Wednesday, is undefeated at the Reilly Center this season through five tests.
According to Cornell, the Big Red lead the all-time series by an 8-6 margin, although the Bonnies won the most recent meeting in Ithaca last year by a score of 72-68.
Cornell held the Peacocks to only 36.7 percent shooting from the floor and 4- of-16 behind the 3-point line in the last outing, but where the Big Red came up real small was at the free-throw line where they were outscored by a 27-7 margin. Nolan Cressler and Devin Cherry both tallied 21 points, the latter clearing seven rebounds to pace the visitors, but at the same time he was charged with nine of the program's 14 turnovers as well.
Cressler leads the team in scoring with his 16.7 ppg and is one of the better rebounders with close to five per contest, which is more than enough reason for him to refrain from taking too many shots from behind the 3-point line where he is only 29.9 percent accurate. Robert Hatter (11.3 ppg) and Cherry (10.4 ppg) play major roles in the team coming up with 66.1 ppg, but at the defensive end of the floor Cornell is being touched for 83.3 ppg.
The Bonnies fell behind Delaware momentarily in the first half of their meeting, but quickly recovered in order to register a double-digit lead at the break, en route to the seven-point home win. Matthew Wright led the way with 23 points on 10-of-16 shooting from the floor, while Youssou Ndoye accounted for 15 points, six rebounds and six of the unit's eight blocked shots.
Wright my be the leading scorer overall for the Bonnies with his 16.3 ppg, but as he showed against Delaware with his 1-of-5 effort behind the 3-point line, his accuracy out on the perimeter is far from acceptable as he knocks down just 27.7 percent of his opportunities. Because Wright, along with Charlon Kloof (12.8 ppg, .255 on 3-pointers), is having such a tough time from distance, the team as a whole comes in at just 30.4 percent.
The combination of a winless program in Cornell and an undefeated Bonnies group at home has a SBU win written all over it.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: St. Bonaventure 84, Cornell 65
01/04 10:37:30 ET