Texas-San Antonio (15-11) at Georgia State (18-9)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday February 18th, 7:00 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: GSU Sports Arena (4,500) -- Atlanta, Georgia. Television: None. Home Record: UTSA 7-4, GSU 11-2. Away Record: UTSA 6-7, GSU 7-5. Neutral Record: UTSA 2-0, GSU 0-2. Conference Record: UTSA 7-5, GSU 10-6. Series Record: Texas-San Antonio leads, 7-5.
GAME NOTES: The Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners will step out of Southland Conference action and head to Atlanta to take on the Georgia State Panthers in this year's BracketBuster series.
Tonight will be the 13th encounter between UTSA and the Panthers, as they will be renewing a former conference rivalry. The Roadrunners lead the all-time series 7-5.
UTSA lost its second game in a row on Wednesday as it was handed a 58-54 defeat by McNeese State. The Roadrunners continued to struggle offensively against McNeese State, as they shot just 34 percent from the field to be held under 60 points for the third-straight game. Head coach Brooks Thompson will try to get his team to start putting points on the scoreboard tonight, as it has proved to be capable with its scoring average of 72.5 ppg. UTSA has limited its opponents to 65.8 ppg, and been outrebounded by an average of 3.0 boards per contest.
The Roadrunners are led by the trio of Melvin Johnson III, Kannon Burrage, and Jeromie Hill. Johnson III is averaging a team-best 13.5 ppg on 45.6 percent shooting from the floor. Burrage is netting 13.3 ppg after he was held to seven points his last time out by McNeese State. Hill is contributing 13.0 points and a team-high 6.1 rebounds per game. Michael Hale III is a serviceable point guard with averages of 9.5 points and 3.1 assists per contest.
The Panthers are 18-9 after they escaped their Tuesday night matchup against the James Madison Dukes with a 67-64 victory. Although GSU shot 41.7 percent from the floor, which is below its season average, it converted 21-of-24 from the charity stripe to take down James Madison. Head coach Ron Hunter has done a remarkable job turning the Panthers around, as they finished last season 12-19. GSU is outscoring its opposition by an average of 8.4 ppg.
Guard Jihad Ali is the go-to-guy for the Panthers. Ali has been great down the stretch, as he is averaging 15.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 1.8 steals per contest over the span of his last six games. Devonta White is chipping in 12.1 points and 3.1 assists from the point guard position. Eric Buckner is leading the CAA in field goal percentage (59.9) and blocked shots (3.5).
GSU has been very impressive at home this season, winning 11-of-13 on its own floor. While the Roadrunners' 6-7 record on the road is not atrocious, it does little to indicate they will have what it takes to take down the Panthers.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia State 68, Texas-San Antonio 59
02/18 10:37:03 ET