GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG men’s basketball team continues its stretch of games against in-state opponents Wednesday night when the Spartans welcome in UNCW to the Greensboro Coliseum for a non-conference matchup. The game is set for a 7 p.m. tip-off and will be broadcast on ESPN3 and the ESPN App with Scott Pryzwansky and Darryl Kosciak on the call. Links will be available at www.uncgspartans.com and on social media.
The Spartans are in the midst of playing four-straight games against in-state foes after knocking on Elon last week. UNCG hosts the Seahawks Wednesday night before travelling to N.C. State Saturday and hosting UNC Asheville next Tuesday. The Spartans are 5-0 at home this season, including a 3-0 mark at the Greensboro Coliseum with wins over Delaware, Longwood and Elon. UNCG is out-scoring opponents at the Greensboro Coliseum by a 75-50 margin, limiting opponents to just 37.3 percent (53-of-142) shooting from the field and 23.7 percent (14-of-59) from 3-point land this year.
Wednesday’s game also marks the third game this season for UNCG against a member of the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA). The Spartans are already 2-0 against the CAA with a 79-66 win over Delaware and a 75-44 win over Elon last week.
The Spartans lead the Southern Conference and rank fifth in the nation in scoring defense, holding opponents to just 59.0 points per game. This is a vast improvement over last year’s team, which finished the year allowing 69.3 points per game. The Spartans are holding opponents to 28.3 percent (51-of-180) shooting from 3-point land, ranking 21st in the nation, and 40.4 percent (176-of-436) shooting from the field to rank 67th in the country. In five out of the Spartans’ six wins this year, UNCG has held opponents under 40 percent shooting from the field. In six out of nine total games, the Spartans have held opponents under 30 percent shooting from 3-point land.
UNCG enters Wednesday’s game with a 6-3 overall record after winning back-to-back games over Liberty and Elon. UNCG is averaging 74.8 points per game while holding opponents to just 59.0 points per game. The Spartans are shooting 44.8 percent (241-of-538) from the field and 36.3 percent (94-of-259) from 3-point land.
Junior guard Francis Alonso (Malaga, Spain/Cushing Academy) lead the offensive attack with 18.1 points per game. Alonso is shooting 44 percent (33-of-75) from 3-point land and is hitting 86.7 percent (26-of-30) from the free throw line. He also leads the team with 28 assists and is fourth with 10 steals. Senior forward Marvin Smith (Richmond, Va./Fork Union Military Academy) is second on the team in scoring at 10.3 points per game while grabbing 4.1 rebounds per game. Smith is second on the team with 18 made 3-pointers and leads the team hitting 94.4 percent (17-of-18) from the free throw line.
Sophomore forward James Dickey (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) leads the team and the Southern Conference on the glass with 9.6 rebounds per game. Dickey is adding 8.9 points per game while shooting 51.6 percent (33-of-64) from the field. Freshman guard Isaiah Miller (Covington, Ga./Newton) is fourth on the team in scoring at 7.4 points per game while shooting 53.7 percent (29-of-54) from the field. Junior guard Demetrius Troy (Raleigh, N.C./Word of God) adds 7.3 points per game and 22 assists on the season.
UNCG and UNCW have met six times prior to Wednesday’s meeting. The teams have split the first six meetings, 3-3. UNCW has won the last two matchups, posting an 84-72 victory at the Greensboro Coliseum in 2014 and an 87-73 victory in Wilmington in 2012. The Spartans won three-straight in the series with wins in the 2007-08, 2006-07 and 1991-92 seasons. UNCG won home games in that span in 2006 and 1991. The teams first met November 23, 1990 with the Seahawks posted a 69-51 victory.
UNCW enters Wednesday’s game with a 2-5 overall record, having dropped four-straight games with losses to Loyola Chicago, Valparaiso, East Carolina and LSU -- all away from home. The Seahawks’ two victories this year have come against North Carolina Wesleyan and Campbell. UNCW is 0-3 on the road this year and 0-5 away from home. The Seahawks are averaging 84.9 points per game but are allowing 92.0 points per game, having allowed 100-plus points on two occasions (Davidson & Loyola Chicago). UNCW is shooting 45.1 percent (215-of-477) from the field and 36.5 percent (61-of-167) from deep Opponents are shooting 50.2 percent (228-of-454) from the field and 41.4 percent (65-of-157) from 3-point land.
Devontae Cacok leads the Seahawks in scoring at 18.0 points per game and on the glass at 11.7 rebounds per game. Cacok is shooting 63 percent (51-of-81) from the field and has gone to the free throw line a team-high 38 times. Jordan Talley is second on the team in scoring at 176 points per game and leads the team with 53 assists. Talley has hit a team-high 18 3-pointers. Ty Taylor is third on the team in scoring at 12.7 points per game while adding 4.3 rebounds per game. Taylor is second on the team with 14 3-pointers. Jaylen Fornes rounds out the double figure scoring at 10.4 points per game and has hit 10 3-pointers.
-- UNCG --