(10-8 (4-1 A-Sun))
(8-9 (4-2 A-Sun))
1/11/2014 | JVM Arena - Jacksonville, Fla. | Attendance: 804
|Stats at a Glance||FGCU||JU|
|3P FG Percentage||.286
FGCU (10-7, 4-0 A-Sun)
@ Jacksonville (7-9, 3-2 A-Sun)
Saturday, Jan. 11 | 3:15 PM
Veterans Memorial Arena (14,091)
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The FGCU men’s basketball team (10-7, 4-0 Atlantic Sun Conference) will look to continue its best-ever league start when it takes on Jacksonville University (7-9, 3-2 A-Sun) on Saturday at approximately 3:15 p.m. The game is part of a tripleheader at Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, with the JU women playing host to cross-town rival UNF in the first game at 1 p.m.
HOW TO FOLLOW
A video broadcast of the game will be available for free through ASun.TV. Additionally, Tom James will have the call for a free, audio-only feed through Stretch Internet on FGCUAthletics.com. Live in-game and behind-the-scenes updates will be available through Twitter @FGCU_MBB, and live stats can be accessed by following the link at the top of the release or by logging on to the men’s basketball schedule page on FGCUAthletics.com.
SETTING THE STAGE
FGCU is coming off a 79-75 win at UNF Thursday and will be in search of its fifth A-Sun triumph of the year already – something it didn’t accomplish until the eighth conference contest last season. The Eagles enter in sole possession of first place in the league standings – the first time ever that they have had a full game lead over their competition – and are winners of five of their past six.
Jacksonville has won two straight games – at Lipscomb on Monday (88-85) and at home against Stetson Thursday night (88-75). The Dolphins were picked fourth in both the A-Sun Preseason Coaches Poll and Media Poll, picking up one first-place vote in the Media Poll.
TWEETABLES (5 Things To Know In 140 Characters Or Less)
• FGCU faced the A-Sun’s leading turnover team Thursday (UNF, 79 A-Sun TOs) and face the second-highest in Jacksonville (64) Saturday.
• The Eagles won their 50th A-Sun game against UNF; half of FGCU’s A-Sun wins have come since the 2011-12 season (7th year).
• FGCU enters on a four-game winning streak, tied for its longest of the season.
• Dajuan Graf issued a season-high six assists at UNF and now has 13 assists and only two turnovers in four A-Sun games.
• Jamail Jones broke a stretch of nine straight single-digit point games with 13 at UNF, his highest point total since Nov. 15 at Furman.
FGCU will be in search of just its second three-game road winning streak in A-Sun play. The Eagles won three in a row away from Alico Arena last year which started with a pair of wins at UNF and Jacksonville before claiming a third at Northern Kentucky. FGCU has never won four straight road games in league action. Furthermore, although still extremely early in the A-Sun season, FGCU is the only team that has yet to lose a conference game on the road (2-0).
WORST vs. FIRST
Saturday’s game is a matchup of the A-Sun’s best defense in FGCU (65.8 points per game) against the league’s worst defensive team in Jacksonville (79.2 points per game).
FGCU lost its first seven games against Jacksonville after joining the A-Sun in the 2007-08 season. However, since then the Eagles have won five straight against the Dolphins, out-scoring them in those five games by an average of nearly 10 points.
• Sophomore guard Jarvis Haywood is the team’s leading scorer at 16.8 per game. He is also averaging 17.6 points per game in A-Sun action, tying him with Lipscomb’s Josh Williams for the lead in that category.
• JU is 0-8 this year when trailing at halftime and 7-1 when leading at the break.
• Ninth-year head coach Cliff Warren is the all-time winningest coach in JU basketball history. He has won two regular-season A-Sun titles, and was the A-Sun Coach of the Year in 2008-09.
• The Dolphins are ranked 324th out of 345 Division-I teams in field-goal percentage defense, allowing opponents to shoot 47.6 percent from the floor.
• JU looks to make up for that with steals as the Dolphins are 64th in the nation in steals per game, averaging 7.6. Vince Martin leads the A-Sun and is ranked 31st in the nation in steals per game at 2.2.
FGCU has received exactly 21 points from its bench in three straight games. Not since the 2011-12 season have the Eagles had three consecutive games of 20 or more bench points. Going back further, the bench has reached double-figure points in six straight games, and FGCU is not coincidently enough 5-1 in that stretch, with the lone loss coming in the closing seconds on a 3-pointer by Radford.
FGCU has also received double-figure second-chance points in three straight games. Included in that run are season highs each of the last two games – 15 at Stetson and 16 at UNF Thursday.
Brett Comer (Winter Park, Fla./Winter Park HS) went down mid-way through the second half with a momentarily scary knee injury, but returned to help lead FGCU on a game-changing 11-1 run late in the game at UNF Thursday. Comer finished with a game-high 15 points, while Jamail Jones (Atlanta, Ga./Montverde Academy/Marquette) added 13 points and Bernard Thompson (Conyers, Ga./Rockdale County HS) and Chase Fieler (Parkersburg, W. Va./Parkersburg South HS) each had 12.
In the game, Fieler moved into sole possession of second place on the program’s all-time rebounding list as he grabbed a game-high-tying seven boards and now has 572, 17 shy of Sherwood Brown’s record of 589. Comer, who started the year in 16th place on the program’s all-time scoring list, moved into the top-10 and now sits alone in 10th place with 824 career points.
FGCU returns to Alico Arena next week to face USC Upstate and ETSU. The Eagles will battle the Spartans on Thursday night (Jan. 16) at 7 before facing the Buccaneers on Saturday (Jan. 18) at 7:30 p.m. Both games will air on ESPN3.
For up-to-the-minute information and behind-the-scenes access to the men’s basketball program, follow @FGCU_MBB on Twitter and Instagram, and “Like” us on Facebook at /FGCUMBB.
2013-14 men’s basketball season tickets are selling quickly, and only a limited amount remain. New this year are mini-plan packages for all games, with the exception of “Breakfast at the Beach,” and individual-game tickets are now on sale. Fans can reserve their seat(s) by visiting the Alico Arena Ticket Office, calling 239-590-7145 or logging on to FGCUAthletics.com/Tickets.