Marshall (14-8) at Tulsa (13-9)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 4th, 8:00 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Donald W. Reynolds Center (8,355) -- Tulsa, Oklahoma. Television: None. Home Record: Marshall 10-3, Tulsa 7-4. Away Record: Marshall 4-4, Tulsa 5-3. Neutral Record: Marshall 0-1, Tulsa 1-2. Conference Record: Marshall 5-3, Tulsa 6-2. Series Record: Tulsa leads, 7-4.
GAME NOTES: The Tulsa Golden Hurricane are gunning for a seventh straight win Saturday as the Marshall Thundering Herd pay a visit to the Reynolds Center for a Conference USA tilt.
Tulsa continued its climb up the standings with a 66-60 win at SMU this past Saturday. The Golden Hurricane shot 52.3 percent from the field and knocked down 10 three-pointers on 17 attempts (58.8 percent) in the victory, their sixth straight to move to 6-2 in league action. Scottie Haralson drained 5- of-9 from beyond the arc to finish with 17 points while Jordan Clarkson connected on 9-of-14 shots overall to pace the club with 22 points. Tulsa outrebounded the Mustangs to the tune of 33-19 and got 10 points and six boards from Eric McClellan.
Marshall put the brakes on its four-game losing skid Wednesday in dominating fashion, topping Tulane 63-44. The Thundering Herd put together a back- breaking 19-2 run early in the contest that the Green Wave never recovered from. Tulane went 7:37 without a point during the stretch and the Thundering Herd upped their advantage to 19 a short time later. It was the lowest point total for a conference opponent since 1950. Marshall outrebounded Tulane, 45-22, and got a game-high 13 points from DeAndre Kane. Shaquille Johnson added 12 points and Damier Pitts registered 10 points and a game-best eight assists.
Tulsa leads the all-time series 7-4 and is a perfect 6-0 at home during that span. Marshall won last year's meeting at home, 79-61, while the Golden Hurricane's last victory in the series came in the quarterfinals of the 2010 C-USA Tournament.
The Golden Hurricane are paced by Clarkson's 15.7 points per game for a team ranks ninth in the conference in scoring at 65.7 ppg. Haralson provides solid support as the league's top three-point threat with 67 triples. The junior connects on 42.4 percent of his long-range tries, good for second in league play, and averages 11.2 ppg overall. Steven Idlet plays his part in the Hurricane's success, averaging 9.4 ppg and 5.2 rebounds per game, while Kodi Maduka adds 8.3 ppg and leads the club in rebounding with 6.6 per contest. Overall, Tulsa owns a healthy advantage on the glass with a 36.1-30.0 edge in the category -- second-best in C-USA. The defense manages to hold the opposition to 62.4 ppg on just 40.9 percent shooting. A minus-2.55 turnover margin continues to plague the Hurricane, who average 12.5 miscues per contest.
The Thundering Herd are led by Kane, who sits among the conference's top scorers at 16.0 ppg. Pitts plays second fiddle but is equally as important, ranking among C-USA's best with 4.6 assists per game to pair with a 13.0-point scoring average. Pitts is also the Herd's top three-point threat with 42 on 32.3 percent shooting. Dennis Tinnon ranks third in the conference in rebounding at 10.3 per contest and chips in a valuable 9.4 ppg. The junior's 53.3 shooting percentage also tops the roster while Kane contributes to Marshall's top-rated rebounding effort with 5.6 rpg. The Herd's plus-9.5 rebounding margin is easily C-USA's best, averaging a whopping 41.6 per contest. The offense manages to post 69.3 ppg despite shooting an underwhelming 42.7 percent from the floor. The defense holds its own in surrendering 64.8 ppg and a 44.0-percent shooting clip.
This matchup figures to be a competitive one with Marshall showing good poise on the road and Tulsa riding a wave of momentum right now. The Thundering Herd gave notice against Tulane they're still to be reckoned with, but the edge goes to Tulsa here at home.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Tulsa 68, Marshall 65
02/04 10:54:12 ET