Georgia State (6-9) at Hofstra (3-10)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, January 7, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Mack Sports Complex (5,124) -- Hempstead, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Georgia State 5-4, Hofstra 3-3. Away Record: Georgia State 1-5, Hofstra 0-6. Neutral Record: Georgia State 0-0, Hofstra 0-1. Conference Record: Georgia State 1-1, Hofstra 0-0. Series Record: Hofstra leads, 8-3.
GAMES NOTES: The Hofstra Pride will attempt to end a long losing streak on Monday when they play their Colonial Athletic Association opener against the Georgia State Panthers at the Mack Sports Complex.
The Panthers got their league schedule underway with contests against Drexel and James Madison. The Panthers ended a five-game losing streak last time out with a 68-52 victory over James Madison on Saturday. Overall the Panthers are 6-9 this season including a woeful 1-5 mark on the road. Georgia State will host Delaware next Saturday.
Meanwhile the Pride are currently riding a eight-game losing streak with their last win coming in a 103-100 double-overtime affair against Marshall on Nov. 18. Hofstra is now 3-10 overall on the campaign. In terms of its play at home the Pride have split six matchups at Mack Sports Complex but have lost the last three. Hofstra will be back on the road this Wednesday against Delaware.
Last season Georgia State routed Hofstra 85-50 in the CAA Tournament after the teams split the season series. Hofstra still leads the all-time series with eight wins in 11 total meetings.
Georgia State dominated in the first half against James Madison and then coasted to victory in the second frame. The Panthers shot 53.8 percent from the floor, including an 8-of-13 showing from beyond the arc in the first 20 minutes and led by as many as 17 points in the contest.
A trio of scorers have powered the Panthers' offensive efforts this year led by R.J. Hunter (16.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg). Hunter has really heated up recently with at least 19 points in four of the last five games. Also averaging in double figures are Devonta White (14.1 pg) and Manny Atkins (12.7 ppg), but the Panthers haven't gotten much help beyond those three with no other player scoring more than six points per game. Limited scoring options have slowed Georgia State to a 64.1 points per game clip overall along with a 42.6 field goal percentage. The Panthers are one of the weaker rebounding teams in the CAA (32.1 per game).
Hofstra battled FAU in its last outing and came up just short in a 61-57 decision. The Pride led for most of the second half but a 15-4 run late in the contest turned a nine-point lead into a two-point deficit. Hofstra was unable to recover as the team hit on just 1-of-5 field goal attempts down the stretch.
For all its offensive woes, Georgia State has still managed to be more productive than Hofstra. The Pride are scoring just 63.2 points per game and shooting at the worst percentage (.386) in the conference. Compounding the offensive issues is the Pride's lack of defensive consistency. Hofstra is being lit up for 74.1 points per game, while teams knock down 45.0 percent of their shots from the floor. Taran Buie (15.1 ppg) is the lead scorer on the squad but has shot just 38.3 percent from the field. Stevie Mejia (10.1 ppg, 4.1 apg) is also scoring in double figures but like Buie has struggled with his consistency shooting the ball (35.3 FG percentage). Part of the issue for Hofstra was the loss of Shaquille Stokes (10.0 ppg) and Jimmy Hall (12.7 ppg, 9.4 rpg) who were suspended at the end of November.
During its losing streak Hofstra has managed to remain competitive at times with four losses coming by single digits. Still the Pride don't have enough offensive punch to end the skein yet.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Georgia State 68, Hofstra 63
01/07 10:32:51 ET