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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Thursday, January 9, 8 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: E.A. Diddle Arena (7,326) -- Bowling Green, Kentucky. Television: HSSN (ESPN3/WKU PBS/WBNA). Home Record: Georgia State 5-0, Western Kentucky 7-1. Away Record: Georgia State 3-5, Western Kentucky 3-4. Neutral Record: Georgia State 1-1, Western Kentucky 0-0. Conference Record: Georgia State 2-0, Western Kentucky 2-0. Series Record: Western Kentucky leads, 1-0.
GAME NOTES: The Georgia State Panthers put a six-game win streak on the line as they travel to face the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Thursday in Sun Belt Conference action.
With a 73-63 defeat of South Alabama Saturday, Georgia State moved to 2-0 early in Sun Belt play and extended its overall win streak to six games. A total of four teams in the conference are 2-0 in Sun Belt action, including the two that are meeting up in this battle.
Western Kentucky has won two games in a row and five of its last six contests. On Saturday, the Hilltoppers downed Troy, 60-51, to remain unbeaten in conference play.
Western Kentucky has won the only meeting between the two programs in their history - a 62-39 defeat of the Panthers back in the 1983-84 season.
Georgia State's six consecutive wins is tied for the eighth-longest streak in program history. The Panthers were able to dispose of South Alabama Saturday thanks in large part to R.J. Hunter's 30-point effort, which included five 3- pointers and a school-record 13-of-13 from the free-throw line. Devonta White and Manny Atkins each contributed 14 points in the win, rounding out the three double-digit scorers for the Panthers. Georgia State hit 45 percent of its 3- point attempts in the contest, and only turned the ball over five times.
Hunter is second on the team in scoring this season, averaging 18.9 ppg, while Ryan Harrow leads in the category with 19.1 ppg. Atkins, who is third on the team in scoring with 13.4 ppg, has a 5.8 rpg clip and shoots 50 percent from the floor this season. Hunter leads the team with 26 steals and is second in blocks with 13. The Panthers as a team average 78.5 ppg this season.
Western Kentucky breezed past a Troy team Saturday that shot a cold 28.3 percent from the floor. The Hilltoppers won their second consecutive game, 60-51, in conference play. George Fant was the only Western Kentucky player to record a scoring total in double figures with 12, narrowly missing out on a double-double with nine rebounds. Fant was 6-of-9 shooting from the floor for a Hilltoppers squad that shot 47.2 percent in the contest.
T.J. Price paces the Hilltoppers this season with 16.7 ppg, and is second on the roster with 14 total steals. Fant comes in behind Price in the scoring column with 13.7 ppg, and leads the team in rebounding with a 7.1 rpg mark. The Hilltoppers this season are averaging 67.1 ppg, but only giving up 63.9 ppg to their opposition through 15 games.
Georgia State is the hot team entering this contest on a win streak, but Western Kentucky, with the homecourt advantage, could easily put a stop to it.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Western Kentucky 73, Georgia State 69
01/09 10:38:57 ET
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