New Hampshire (12-14) at Marist (4-24)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 19th, 7:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: McCann Center (3,200) -- Poughkeepsie, New York. Television: None. Home Record: UNH 7-4, Marist 3-9. Away Record: UNH 4-10, Marist 1-13. Neutral Record: UNH 1-0, Marist 0-2. Conference Record: UNH 6-8, Marist 3-13. Series Record: New Hampshire leads, 2-1.
GAME NOTES: Marist might be welcoming BracketBuster weekend, as the Red Foxes get an escape from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference this evening at home against the New Hampshire Wildcats at the McCann Center.
It might be a shame to take the Wildcats away from American East Conference play, because the team is finally starting to get it together in terms of league action, as New Hampshire has won four of its last six games, pushing its league mark to 6-8 on the year. The last time the Wildcats were in action they clawed out a 63-46 victory over UMBC on the road, for their fourth victory as the visitor.
Marist will take any kind of help to get back into the win column. Marist is just 3-13 in MAAC play and rolls into this weekend with an 11-game losing skid, including a 61-54 loss to Fairfield on Wednesday.
With respect to the all-time series, the Wildcats own a 2-1 edge over Marist.
This is a tenacious pack of Wildcats at the defensive end of the floor, as the team is limiting the opposition to just 60.3 ppg. The ability to shut down an opponent to that extent should make a team very tough to beat, but New Hampshire is a couple games under .500 and that is because the team has enjoyed virtually no success at the other end of the floor. The Wildcats come into this game averaging just 59.0 ppg, behind a very weak 37.5 percent shooting effort. Tyrone Conley is the only healthy player on the roster averaging double figures and comes into this matchup netting 15.3 ppg. The last time New Hampshire was on the floor the team put forth its usual stingy effort defensively, as the Wildcats held UMBC to just 46 points. UNH shot 44.0 percent in the win and was led by Conley's 25 points. Dane DiLiegro added a double-double of 21 points and 12 rebounds, while Chandler Rhoads posting 10 points, to go along with six assists.
It is hard to reach 24 losses in a season, and if a team reaches that point it is usually easy to figure out what has kept that squad out of the win column. In the case of the Red Foxes it is their inability to produce offensively. Marist is averaging just 60.0 ppg on the season and that comes on a 37.9 percent shooting effort. At the present moment only Sam Prescott is posting double figures, as the guard has tallied 11.8 ppg. Marist's struggles offensively were evident in the team's recent loss to Fairfield, as the Red Foxes finished with just 54 points. The team shot 41.3 percent but simply could not overcome its 17 turnovers. Dorvell Carter led the way with 19 points in the loss, while Prescott finished with 13 points and six turnovers.
Homecourt advantage is very important in college basketball, but for a team that has struggled at the level of Marist, it doesn't help enough.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: New Hampshire 57, Marist 55
02/19 10:37:47 ET