Niagara (1-2) at Mercer (3-1)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Tuesday, November 22nd, 7:00 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: University Center (3,200) -- Macon, Georgia. Television: Local. Home Record: Niagara 1-0, Mercer 1-0. Away Record: Niagara 0-1, Mercer 1-1. Neutral Record: Niagara 0-1, Mercer 1-0. Conference Record: Niagara 0-0, Mercer 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: After falling to South Dakota State on Monday, Niagara looks to rebound with a win in the second round of the CBE Classic today against Mercer in non-conference action in Macon.
Niagara faltered down the stretch in a 79-71 loss to South Dakota State in the first round of the tournament Monday. The Purple Eagles were led by Antoine Mason's 26 points. Niagara will take on Sam Houston State on Wednesday in the CBE Classic finale.
Mercer looked good in its 60-38 victory over Sam Houston State on Monday, turning in both a strong defensive effort and a balanced offensive performance in the win. The Bears were led by Langston Hall's 24 points. Mercer will take on South Dakota State Wednesday, followed by a road trip to Lipscomb next week.
This is the first ever meeting between Niagara and Mercer.
Niagara hit 14-of-28 from the field in the second half against South Dakota State, but the Jackrabbits kept their distance, never allowing the Purple Eagles to get closer than three points in the final five minutes of the game. Niagara, which shot 45.6 percent from the field overall, got a big boost from Mason's 26-point performance. Mason hit 9-of-15 from the field, and added five rebounds. Juanya Green also had a key performance offensively, scoring 18 points and posting four boards, while Ameen Tanksley added eight points and seven rebounds in the loss. Niagara edged South Dakota State on the glass, 39-38.
Mercer's defense was stellar in its win over Sam Houston State, holding the Bearkats to 30.2 shooting (21.1 percent in the first half, 37.5 percent in second half) as the Sam Houston State went 2-of-12 from three-point range as well. The Bearkats also committed 17 turnovers, as Mercer posted four blocks and six steals. Offensively, the Bears were led by Hall's 24 points, as he shot 8-of-15 from the field (including 6-of-11 from three-point range), while Monty Brown came off the bench to score 11 points and post five rebounds.
Niagara has the tools offensively to provide matchup problems for Mercer, but it might not matter if the Bears defend in this game like they did against Sam Houston State. Mercer also has a primetime scorer in Hall, who can really shoot from long range. The Bears have the edge at home.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Mercer 66, Niagara 57
11/22 10:39:25 ET