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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, January 22, 7 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Mack Sports Complex (5,124) -- Hempstead, New York. Television: None. Home Record: W&M 6-2, Hofstra 4-4. Away Record: W&M 4-4, Hofstra 1-7. Neutral Record: W&M 0-0, Hofstra 1-1. Conference Record: W&M 2-1, Hofstra 2-1. Series Record: Hofstra leads, 13-7.
GAME NOTES: The Hofstra Pride try to rebound from their worst offensive showing of the season, as they host the Tribe of William & Mary in Colonial Athletic Association action at the Mack Sports Complex.
Initially the schedule had Hofstra enjoying a week between meetings with UNC- Wilmington and the Tribe, but the team had to make a quick stop in Dallas on Sunday in order to complete a rescheduled game versus SMU that was previously postponed due to inclement weather. The long trip to Texas did not agree with the Pride as they ended with a 73-49 setback, snapping a two-game slide.
As for the Tribe, they too played over the weekend, but their meeting against James Madison was not only at home in Virginia, it was also a more favorable outcome as the team posted a 78-56 victory. With the win, the fourth in the last five games, W&M moved to 2-1 in conference play, which is where Hofstra is at the moment as well.
Hofstra leads the all-time series by a count of 13-7, with all of the meetings taking place after the Pride joined the CAA for the 2001-02 campaign.
A remarkable first half for the Tribe saw the team convert a staggering 70.8 percent from the field, including 7-of-12 behind the 3-point line, en route to a 42-24 advantage at the break and the eventual 22-point victory over JMU at Kaplan Arena. Marcus Thornton scored 20 points, Tim Rusthoven added 17 and seven rebounds, while Brandon Britt pitched in with 12 points off the bench.
Thornton, the leading scorer for the Tribe in each of the last four wins for the program, is responsible for 18.8 ppg, although he is shooting just 41.2 percent from the field at the moment. Of his 91 field goals though, 46 have come from beyond the arc, the squad averaging 8.8 conversions on the perimeter per contest. Rusthoven checks in with 13.0 ppg and 5.5 rpg, but just ahead of him in the scoring department is reserve Omar Prewitt who has delivered 13.5 ppg for the campaign, but just 11.0 ppg in league play.
Hofstra fell behind immediately against the Mustangs and never recovered, shooting a dismal 6-of-27 (.222) from the floor in the first half, including 3-of-14 behind the 3-point line, en route to the disappointing setback. Chris Jenkins scored a team-best 14 points, hitting 4-of-8 shots beyond the arc off the bench, followed by Dion Nesmith and Zeke Upshaw with 11 and 10 points, respectively.
One of the top point producers in the CAA this season, Upshaw leads the Pride in scoring with 19.1 ppg, his 90-of-119 showing at the free-throw line the primary reason why the team has outscored the opposition at the stripe. Nesmith accounts for another 12.4 ppg and is first on the squad with 57 assists, but that's just one more than he has turnovers, cutting it rather close for a squad that is being outscored by 5.3 ppg at the moment.
The blowout loss to SMU was an exception rather than the rule for the Pride, and even though Hofstra is back at home tonight, the unexpected trip to the Lone Star State has probably taken a lot out of the squad.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: William & Mary 69, Hofstra 62
01/22 10:38:55 ET
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