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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, February 20, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Mack Sports Complex (5,046) -- Hempstead. New York. Television: None. Home Record: GMU 6-5, Hofstra 5-7. Away Record: GMU 6-4, Hofstra 1-13. Neutral Record: GMU 3-2, Hofstra 0-1. Conference Record: GMU 8-6, Hofstra 3-11. Series Record: George Mason leads, 14-8.
GAME NOTES: The George Mason Patriots have made the trek to the Empire State for Wednesday's Colonial Athletic Association clash with the Hofstra Pride.
The Patriots are coming off a 78-60 home loss to Georgia State on Saturday. GMU currently sits in fifth place in the CAA, but is just a game and a half out of second place.
Hofstra is hoping to snap a three-game winless streak, which includes a 63-54 loss at Drexel on Monday night. Overall, the Pride have dropped 10 of their last 11 decisions.
The Patriots hold a 14-8 series lead over Hofstra, and they have won the last four meetings, including a 57-46 decision earlier this season in Fairfax.
Sherrod Wright led the Patriots with 19 points and Marco Gujanicic chipped in with 10 points in the Patriots' recent home loss to Georgia State. Both teams shot greater than 50 percent from the field in the first half. GSU was the hotter of the two teams overall, connecting on 62.1 percent from the field, including 7-of-11 from beyond the 3-point arc, as it took a 51-36 lead at halftime. The Panthers pushed the lead to as many as 27 in the second half, as they snapped a five-game losing streak to the Patriots. GSU had a 21-9 advantage in second-chance points, and a 34-27 edge on the boards.
Wright averages 17.3 ppg, fourth-best in the CAA, and 5.2 rpg, and he is the only player on the roster to average double figures in scoring. From there it's a sharp drop-off to Jonathan Arledge (7.2 ppg) and Johnny Williams (7.0 ppg). Copes (5.4 rpg) paces the team on the glass. The Patriots have the second-best defense in the CAA by allowing only 64.1 ppg. GMU is 5-2 away from Fairfax in CAA action, and only Northeastern and Towson have posted more road conference victories. George Mason is averaging nearly 72 ppg in league road tilts, while scoring 65.1 ppg at home in conference.
Despite a career-high 22 points from Stevie Meija, Hofstra fell to Drexel on Monday night in Philadelphia. Taran Buie chipped in 13 points, while Stephen Nwaukoni hauled in 12 rebounds for the Pride. Drexel shot just 34.5 percent from the field in the first half, but held Hofstra to an even worse 26.3 percent, as it took a 33-23 advantage at intermission. The Dragons improved their field goal efficiency to 42.9 percent after the break, and their lead never dipped below five points in the second half. Hofstra was plagued by 19 turnovers, while Drexel committed just nine miscues.
Buie and Mejia lead the squad in scoring, averaging 12.9 and 11.6 ppg, respectively. Nwaukoni is pulling down 7.9 rpg. Hofstra is the worst offensive squad in the league, scoring a mere 58.4 ppg, while giving up 67.0 ppg. They are a mess offensively, sitting at the bottom of the CAA in scoring margin (-8.6), free throw percentage (.622), field goal percentage (.383), 3-point field goals made (4.2 per tilt) and assists (9.7 apg).
With the Patriots' scoring prowess on the road, combined with the woeful offense of the Pride, expect George Mason to get the easy win and stay in contention for the CAA title.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: George Mason 73, Hofstra 60
02/20 11:09:35 ET
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