Milwaukee (6-20) at Youngstown State (14-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, February 15, 7:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Beeghly Center (6,500) -- Youngstown, Ohio. Television: HLN. Home Record: Milwaukee 6-7, YSU 8-3. Away Record: Milwaukee 0-11, YSU 6-6. Neutral Record: Milwaukee 0-2, YSU 0-2. Conference Record: Milwaukee 2-10, YSU 6-6. Series Record: Milwaukee leads, 24-8.
GAME NOTES: Yet again the Milwaukee Panthers seek that elusive first road win of the season, as they challenge the Youngstown State Penguins in Horizon League play at the Beeghly Center on Friday night.
The Panthers have had very little to cheer about in 2012-13 and coming up empty in 11 true road games and two more neutral-site affairs is only part of the disappointment. The squad is also all alone at the bottom of the conference standings with a record of 2-10, although the Panthers did show signs of life on Tuesday night with a 71-53 romp over the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers at home in the Klotsche Center to snap a seven-game slide.
As for the Penguins, who are stuck in the middle of the pack in the Horizon with a split of 12 league bouts, they were forced to play an extra 15 minutes (three overtimes) on Sunday versus Illinois-Chicago, eventually bowing in an 88-83 final at home. The loss was the third in the last four games for the program.
YSU won the first meeting of the campaign against Milwaukee last month by a narrow three-point margin, 75-72, on the road which means the all-time series now favors Milwaukee by a count of 24-8 accounting to Penguins sources.
Paris Gulley dropped in a game-high 21 points as the Milwaukee Panthers snapped a seven-game slide with the 18-point win over the Ramblers of Loyola- Chicago in Horizon League play at the Klotsche Center three nights ago. Also scoring in double figures for the Panthers was Jordan Aaron with 16 points, to go along with six rebounds and five assists for the hosts. Milwaukee won the rebounding battle, 44-32, and outscored the Ramblers at the free-throw line, 24-12, in order to combat 19 turnovers on the night.
While he missed a few games early on in the campaign, Gulley has still responded by making himself into one of the offensive leaders for the program with 14.1 ppg, although his mere 35.7 percent shooting from the floor and 29.6 percent effort on the perimeter is still quite disappointing. Aaron checks in with 14.0 ppg and is also the top passer with 108 assists, but like Gulley, he too has had trouble from the field (.367) which is why the team as a whole is hitting just 38.2 percent from the floor right now.
Even with just 32.9 percent shooting from the floor and 20-of-33 at the free- throw line, the Penguins somehow made it to three overtime periods before suffering the home loss against the Flames over the weekend. Playing a total of 51 minutes, Kendrick Perry tallied a game-high 29 points, cleared six rebounds and handed out five assists, although he was also tagged for five of the unit's 13 miscues on the day. Blake Allen and Kamren Belin chipped in 16 and 14 points, respectively, the former pulling down a team-best nine rebounds along the way.
Perry has been a solid contributor in many ways this season for the Penguins, from his team-best 16.6 ppg, to delivering 106 assists and making 47 steals. Mixed in there are also 5.3 rpg for Perry which makes him third on the unit in that department. Damian Eargle (11.8 ppg, 6.5 rpg) has a huge presence in the paint with a staggering 82 blocked shots, but that still doesn't explain why he has but 13 assists in 750 minutes of action.
The Panthers finally got the monkey off their back with the resounding win earlier this week, but being back out on the road is still not a good sign for the struggling program.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Youngstown State 68, Milwaukee 62
02/15 10:31:47 ET