The Case Western Reserve University men's basketball team will carry the momentum of a four-game winning streak into their first University Athletic Association road trip of the season, when the Spartans face the University of Rochester on Friday, January 12th at 8:00 p.m. in Rochester, New York, and 20th-ranked Emory University at 12:00 p.m. in Atlanta, Georgia on Sunday, January 14th.
Friday, January 12th at Rochester (8:00 p.m.)
Live Stats: http://www.sidearmstats.com/rochester/mbball/
*Rochester charges a $6.95 fee for a 24-hour pass to view their webcast
Sunday, January 14th at Emory (12:00 p.m.)
Live Stats: http://athletics.case.edu/sports/mbkb/2017-18/boxscores/20180114_thkp.xml
The Spartans have won four-straight games and six of their last seven contests to improve to 7-5 overall, including a 3-1 mark in road contests. CWRU is coming off a victory in their first conference game of the season last Saturday, defeating Carnegie Mellon 94-63 at home. The team has averaged 80.4 points per game in 2017-18 on 43.7% shooting overall, including a 37.6% mark from three-point range, while allowing 76.5 points per contest. The Spartans are led by senior forward T.J. Duckett with 14.5 points 10.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per contest, while freshman guard Ignas Masiulionis has added 10.7 points per game, and freshman guard Antonio Ionadi and sophomore forward Connor Nally have added 9.6 points per game apiece.
Head Coach Todd McGuinness is in his second season at CWRU. He has a career record of 129-94 (.578 winning percentage), which includes a seven-year stint at Hartwick College, where his teams qualified for the NCAA Championships on four occasions. McGuinness is assisted by Rudy Kirbus, Kelly Blair, Liz Hornberger, Evan Shang and Aleksandar Zivic.
The Yellowjackets will enter Friday's game with an overall record of 9-3, including a 5-1 mark at home. The team dropped out of the D3hoops.com Top-25 for the first time this season following their 80-62 loss at Emory to open UAA play, the squad's second loss in their last three games. Rochester is averaging 72.4 points per game on 42.4% shooting overall and 36.0% shooting from three-point range, while allowing 62.8 points per contest. The Yellowjackets are led by junior guard Ryan Clamage's 16.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game, while junior guard Jacob Wittig has added 10.3 points per contest.
Rochester is led by Head Coach Luke Flockerzi, who has compiled a 131-65 during his eight years at Rochester and 161-111 during his 11-year coaching career, which includes a three-year stop at Skidmore. He is assisted by Griffin LaDew and Ryan Shay.
Last year, the Spartans ended a four-game losing streak to the Yellowjackets, stunning then sixth-ranked Rochester 76-72 on the road. Connor Nally recorded then career-highs with 19 points and eight rebounds in the victory, knocking down five of his 11 three-point tries in the game. In a series that dates back to the 1979-80 season, Case Western Reserve is 11-41 all-time against Rochester.
#20 Emory Eagles
The Eagles, who will host Carnegie Mellon on Friday before facing the Spartans on Sunday, stand at 10-2 on the season, including a perfect 7-0 at home. Emory's UAA-opening home win over Rochester last Saturday was the team's sixth-straight, and their eighth in their last nine games. The team leads the UAA with 86.6 points per game, shooting 46.8% overall and 36.5% from three-point range, while allowing 77.8 points per contest. Four Emory players have averaged double-figure points this season, including freshman guard Romin Williams (17.5), senior forward Adam Gigax (16.5), senior forward Christopher Avant (11.6) and junior guard Gebereal Baitey (10.3). Avant is also leading the team with 8.3 rebounds per game, and senior guard Whitt Rapp has a conference-best 7.3 assists per contest.
The Eagles are coached by Jason Zimmerman, who has spent his entire 11-year career as a head coach at Emory, going 181-94. He is assisted by Kevin Sullivan, Charlie Copp and Pete Zaharis.
The Spartans are 20-30 all-time against the Eagles, with the series dating back to the founding of the UAA in 1986-87. Last year, Emory won both games against CWRU, with the Spartans falling 91-81 at home on January 20th and 99-92 in overtime on the road on February 17th. In the overtime game, Duckett notched a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds, while Sam Hansen knocked down five three-point shots and scored 18 points with six rebounds.
- Case Western Reserve's four-game winning streak is the team's longest since winning six-straight games from December 29, 2014 through January 18, 2015.
- The Spartans' 60.7% mark from the floor (34-of-56) was the team's highest in a game since shooting 61.1% against the University of Chicago on February 4, 2011… The team's 52.0% mark on three-point attempts was its highest since shooting 60.0% from long range against Penn State – Behrend on January 2, 2016… CWRU is 3-0 when shooting at least 50% on three-point tries this season, and dating back to last season, has won four-straight games when making at least half of their three-point attempts.
- CWRU ranks fifth among DIII teams in rebounds per game (45.75) and sixth in rebounding margin (+10.1), leading the UAA in both categories… CWRU has outrebounded its opponents in 11 of 12 games this season, including a positive margin of 10 or more rebounds on eight occasions… The Spartans have won six-straight games and are 6-2 overall when outrebounding their opponents by 10 or more.
- The Spartans also lead the UAA in blocked shots per game (3.6) and three-point field goals per game (10.8), and are second in the league in three-point field goal percentage (37.6%)… The Spartans are on pace to make 268 three point shots this season, which would rank second in program history behind the 270 made during the 2015-16 campaign… The Spartans have made at least 200 three point shots in each of the last three seasons entering 2017-18, the only three 200-three point field goal campaigns in program history… CWRU has made at least eight three point shots in each of their 12 games this year, and have made 10 or more three point shots on seven occasions.
- T.J. Duckett was named the UAA Athlete of the Week after averaging 17.5 points and 12.5 rebounds over two games last week, including a team-leading 15 points and nine rebounds in the team's win over Carnegie Mellon… Duckett leads the UAA this season in defensive rebounds per game (7.3, 34th in DIII) and total rebounds (129, 26th in DIII) and is second in the conference in double-doubles (six, 24th in DIII), field goal percentage (60.5%, 43rd in DIII), rebounds per game (10.8, 17th in DIII), offensive rebounds per game (3.4, 35th in DIII) and total blocks (13).
- Duckett is also 23rd among all active NCAA Division III players with a career 56.4% mark from the floor, 41st with 17 double-doubles and 74th with 495 career rebounds… He is five rebounds away from becoming the 13th player in program history with at least 500 career rebounds… Duckett is on pace for 268 rebounds this season, which would break the program record of 264, set by David Thompson during the 2013-14 campaign.
- Michael Hollis ranks fifth among UAA players with a 1.85 assists to turnover ratio… He leads all CWRU players with 3.4 assists and 1.1 steals per game this season, and is second on the team with 6.5 rebounds and 0.7 blocks per game.
- Newcomers to the Spartans' roster have accounted for 469 of the team's 965 points this season (48.6%)… Leading first-year scorers include freshman Ignas Masiulionis (10.7), freshman Antonio Ionadi (9.6), and sophomore Monty Khela (7.9).
- Emory will be the first nationally-ranked opponent that the Spartans will face this season… CWRU won their last game against a top-25 team, defeating then sixth-ranked Rochester 76-72 on the road on February 19, 2017… The Spartans have three additional games this season scheduled against teams that appear in this week's D3hoops.com Top-25 (Jan. 19 and Feb. 16 against sixth-ranked Washington and Feb. 11 against Emory).