UAB (16-10) at Charlotte (14-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 22, 3:30 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Halton Arena (9,105) -- Charlotte, North Carolina. Television: FS1. Home Record: UAB 12-3, Charlotte 9-4. Away Record: UAB 3-5, Charlotte 2-7. Neutral Record: UAB 1-2, Charlotte 3-0. Conference Record: UAB 5-7, Charlotte 5-7. Series Record: UAB leads, 25-15.
GAME NOTES: The UAB Blazers are set for a reunion with a familiar for as they venture to Halton Arena for a Conference USA bout with the Charlotte 49ers.
Coach Jerod Haase's Blazers are coming off an 68-62 victory over Marshall in Huntington, which marked their second win in three outings. UAB's recent surge has lifted it to a 16-10 overall record. The Blazers have finished with 50 rebounds or more in nine contests this season and are ranked second nationally with 45.5 rpg. UAB managed to outrebound Marshall, 51-41, but also shot just 34.4 percent from the floor in the contest.
The 49ers are on a four-game losing streak after being dismantled on Thursday in a 71-49 loss to Middle Tennessee. Charlotte was expected to be a contender to win the C-USA after its impressive non-conference performance which included victories over Kansas State and Michigan, but its recent slump has dropped it down to a 5-7 conference ledger. Coach Alan Major's squad owns a 9-4 record at Halton Arena despite dropping its last two. On the season, Charlotte is scoring and allowing 71.7 ppg.
The Blazers and 49ers played every season from 1996 until 2005, when Charlotte departed the C-USA. UAB owns a 25-15 all-time series lead.
In UAB's decision over the Thundering Herd, junior guard Chad Frazier scored 13 points and dealt out eight assists. Robert Williams and Fahro Alihodzic netted 12 points apiece for UAB. C.J. Washington pulled down 10 boards, while Denzell Watts provided a spark off the bench with nine points. The Blazers' second unit came out big, outscoring MU's reserves, 24-0. Frazier has become a superstar in his first season at the Division I level as he ranks second in the C-USA in scoring at 18.1 ppg to go along with 4.4 apg. Washington is netting 13.6 ppg and is leading on UAB on the glass with 7.2 rpg. Rod Rucker has been consistent en route to averages of 11.2 ppg and 7.1 rpg
Charlotte came out of the gate flat in its last outing and went into the intermission trailing MTSU by 10 points. The 49ers were outscored, 9-4, in points off of turnovers and hit on only 1-of-7 attempts at the free-throw line in the opening 20 minutes of the game. Things did not get better after the break as they were limited to 41.7 percent efficiency from the floor, while the Blue Raiders sank 50 percent of their field goal tries. Terrence Williams scored 11 points. Pierria Henry netted nine points, but also committed eight of the team's 20 turnovers. Shawn Lester, who is netting a team-high 13.1 ppg, was held to just four points. Henry has shown off his versatility with averages of 11.8 ppg, 5.1 rpg and 147 assists against 78 turnovers. Willie Clayton is scoring 11.4 ppg and paces the 49ers on the glass at nine rpg.
UAB also collected impressive wins during its non-conference season over Nebraska and North Carolina along with an overtime loss to New Mexico. The Blazers and 49ers are tied in the league standings entering Saturday, but Charlotte has looked like a completely different team in recent action. The 49ers will need to snap out of their slump quickly as the C-USA Tournament is rapidly approaching. They may be able to do so since their forwards are capable of competing with the Blazers on the boards.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Charlotte 76, UAB 74
02/22 10:58:33 ET