Sacramento State (7-14) at Eastern Washington (11-12)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 4th, 9:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Reese Court (6,000) -- Cheney, Washington. Television: None. Home Record: Sacramento State 5-6, Eastern Washington 6-3. Away Record: Sacramento State 2-8, Eastern Washington 5-9. Neutral Record: Sacramento State 0-0, Eastern Washington 0-0. Conference Record: Sacramento State 2-8, Eastern Washington 5-5. Series Record: Eastern Washington leads 26-9.
GAMES NOTES: Eastern Washington will be looking for a repeat of the last time these two teams met, when the Eagles host the Sacramento State Hornets for a Big Sky matchup at Reese Court.
These teams met for the first time this season in mid-January when Eastern Washington took a 65-60 victory on the road. The win extends the Eagles' commanding all-time series record to 26-9.
Sacramento State has rebounded from a nine-game losing streak with wins in back-to-back games for just the third time this season. The Hornets are 2-8 in Big Sky play which leads only Northern Arizona in the standings. Sacramento State will host Montana State and Montana in its next two games.
Eastern Washington has also won back-to-back games after a losing streak, with the Eagles shorter at four games. The Eagles now find themselves at 5-5 and squarely in the middle of the pack in the Big Sky standings. Eastern WAshinton faces a stern test when the Eagles go on the road against conference leading Weber Sate in their next matchup.
Sacramento State improved to 2-8 on the road this season with a 73-62 win at Northern Colorado on Thursday. The Hornets shot an even 50.0 percent from the floor in the game and overcame 15 turnovers to capture the victory mainly due to the lead they built in the first half. They entered the break up 36-22 and despite giving up 40 points in the second period held on to win.
The offensive output for Sacramento State was exactly eight points better than its scoring average for the season which now sits at an even 65.0 points per game. Despite a losing record, the Hornets have kept games close allowing only 66.5 points per game while shooting better than their opponents at 44.8 percent to 44.1 percent. Freshman guard Dylan Garrity, who has already claimed the mantle as the teams best passer averaging a conference high 6.5 assists per game, continued to show his ability to score by putting in a team-high 16 against Northern Colorado. Garrity is averaging only 7.4 points per game on the season but has been in double figures in four of the last five games after doing so only once in the previous 16. Forwards John Dickson (12.5 ppg) and Joe Eberhard (10.1 ppg) still retain the scoring leads for the Hornet while Eberhard enjoys a 6.1 rebounds per game clip that is the top mark on the squad.
It was a comeback win in the second half for Eastern Washington in its 74-68 victory over Northern Arizona on Thursday. The Eagles trailed 32-29 at the half but overcame a nine-point lead early in the second half to win the game. The Eagles held the Lumberjacks without a field-goal during a six and a half minute stretch to take a six-point they would never relinquish.
There has been no shortage of offense for the Eagles this season (72.0 ppg) instead the piece of the puzzle missing for Eastern Washington has come at the defensive end, as it allows 70.0 points per game including 44.3 percent shooting. The Eagles shoot only 40.7 percent as a team in comparison. A trio of scorers power Eastern Washington's offense. Junior forward Colin Chiverton is the primary option scoring 16.9 points per game which is third in the conference. After Chiverton it is senior point guard Cliff Colimon who picks up the scoring load putting in 13.3 points per game while getting his teammates involved effectively by dishing out 5.2 assists per game. Senior forward Cliff Ederaine (10.9 ppg, 7.8 rpg) is the third part of the trio and had his fifth double-double of the season against Northern Arizona with 11 points and 13 rebounds.
Eastern Washington gets the nod in this one with the impressive scoring of its 'Big Three' and the home crowd behind it.
Sports Network Prediction: Eastern Washington 78, Sacramento State 68
02/04 10:43:17 ET