Menís Basketball Vs. Western Carolina Still On For Saturday At 5 P.M.
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Despite all the snow in the Triad are, the UNCG men’s basketball team returns to action Saturday evening when the Spartans welcome in Southern Conference rival Western Carolina for the third game of their home stand. Game time is set for 5 p.m. at the Greensboro Coliseum. Saturday’s game is still on despite the forecasted winter weather for the Triad. Any changes to the schedule will be available at www.uncgspartans.com and on Twitter @UNCGSports.
Saturday’s game will now be aired on the SoCon Digital Network with Scott Pryzwansky on the call. The game will no longer air on ESPN3. Additionally, the game will be aired on Tune In and online at www.uncgspartans.com/radio with Parker Southern set to make the call.
The Spartans enter Saturday’s game with an 11-5 overall record and a 2-1 mark in Southern Conference play. UNCG is coming off a big, come from behind 73-68 victory over preseason SoCon favorite Chattanooga Monday night. The Spartans are averaging 74.6 points per game while holding opponents to 65.8 points per game. UNCG is shooting 45.6 percent (437-of-959) from the field and 39.3 percent (149-of-379) from 3-point land. Opponents are shooting 42 percent (356-of-848) from the field and 35.4 percent (114-of-322) from distance.
Sophomore guard Francis Alonso (Malaga, Spain/Cushing Academy) leads the team in scoring at 12.9 points per game and is coming off a 26-point effort against the Mocs. Alonso leads the team with 44 3-pointers made and is shooting 44 percent from 3-point land. He is second in the SoCon at the free throw line hitting 89.7 percent (35-of-39) from the charity stripe. Senior guard Diante Baldwin (Greensboro, N.C./High Point Christian) is second on the team in scoring at 11.9 points per game. Baldwin leads the team with 69 assists and 35 steals while grabbing 4.1 rebounds per game. Junior forward Marvin Smith (Richmond, Va./Fork Union Military Academy) is third on the team in scoring at 10.9 points per game and third on the team with 5.0 rebounds per game. Smith has hit 29 3-pointers at a 34.5 percent clip.
Senior center R.J. White (Frisco, Texas/Frisco) rounds out the Spartans in double figure scoring at 10.3 points per game. White leads the team on the glass with 6.4 rebounds per game. He is shooting 53.6 percent (67-of-125) from the field. Sophomore Demetrius Troy (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) adds 8.8 points per game and is second on the team with 62 assists. Junior Jordy Kuiper (Groningen, Netherlands/Canaries Basketball Academy) chips in 7.1 points per game and 4.9 rebounds per game while redshirt freshman James Dickey (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) grabs 6.1 rebounds per game off the bench.
Western Carolina enters Saturday’s game with a 5-10 overall record and an 0-2 mark in Southern Conference play. The Catamounts opened league play with a 16-point home loss to Chattanooga and a 5-point home loss to Samford. The Catamounts have defeated Hiwassee, Jackson State, Appalachian State, High Point and Mars Hill. Western Carolina is averaging 58.2 points per game this season while allowing 70.4 points per game. The Catamounts are shooting 35.9 percent (313-of-871) from the field and 29.1 percent (97-of-333) from distance.
Haboubacar Mutombo leads the team in scoring at 9.8 points per game. Mutombo has hit 12 3-pointers this year at 28.6 percent. Deriece Parks is second on the team in scoring at 9.4 points per game but has missed the last four games due to injury. Devin Peterson is third on the team in scoring at 9.0 points per game and leads the team with 43 assists. Marc Gosselin leads the team with 6.3 rebounds per game and adds 8.1 points per game. The Catamounts have eight players averaging at least 5.0 points per game.
Saturday’s game marks the 50th meeting all-time between UNCG and Western Carolina. The Spartans trail the all-time series by a 32-17 margin, but won the last meeting between the teams 75-58 at the Greensboro Coliseum last year. The victory snapped an eight-game winning streak by the Catamounts in the series. UNCG lost the first game of the home-and-home series last year 83-77 in overtime in Cullowhee.
The Spartans averaged 76.0 points per game last year against WCU, shooting 43.4 percent (53-of-122) from the field, 38 percent (19-of-50) from deep and 71.1 percent (27-of-38) from the free throw line. Western Carolina averaged 70.5 points in the two games, shooting 44.2 percent (50-of-113) from the field, 36.4 percent (16-of-44) from 3-point land and 69.4 percent (25-of-36) from the charity stripe.
Smith led the Spartans last season with 13.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game while Alonso averaged 12.5 points and hit seven 3-pointers. White added 12.5 points and 7.0 rebounds per game while Baldwin averaged 7.5 assists per game against the Catamounts. Torrion Brummitt led Western Carolina at 16.5 points and 7.0 rebounds per game. Mike Brown added 10.0 points per game and Rhett Harrelson chipped in 13.5 points, hitting seven 3-pointers.
-- UNCG --