St. Bonaventure (14-10) at Fordham (9-16)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, February 22nd, 7:00 p.m. (et).
FACTS & STATS: Site: Rose Hill Gym (3,470) -- Bronx, New York. Television: None. Home Record: St. Bonnies 10-2, Fordham 8-4. Away Record: St. Bonnies 4-7, Fordham 1-12. Neutral Record: St. Bonnies 0-1, Fordham 0-0. Conference Record: St. Bonnies 7-5, Fordham 2-10. Series Record: St. Bonaventure leads, 19-14.
GAME NOTES: Desperate to break a five-game slide, the Fordham Rams prepare for the arrival of St. Bonaventure for an Atlantic 10 Conference battle at Rose Hill Gym tonight.
Fordham, which has won a total of just three games in the last 12 outings overall, is near the bottom of the conference standings with just two wins in 12 attempts. Over the weekend the team was pitted against Saint Louis, one of the top performers in the A-10, and the outcome was exactly what most expected as Fordham suffered the 66-46 setback on the road.
As for the Bonnies, they too were in action this past weekend, but in their case they were on the other side of a 20-point decision as they buried Rhode Island, 81-61. The triumph was the second in the last three games for the Bonnies as they put themselves in a three-way tie with UMass and La Salle for fifth place in the standings coming into the week.
With respect to the all-time series between these two schools on the hardwood, the Bonnies leads by a count of 19-14 thanks to victories in five straight matchups. Last month the Bonnies blew the doors off Fordham with a 95-51 final at the Reilly Center.
Andrew Nicholson scored a season-high 32 points and collected 13 rebounds as the Bonnies sent URI to a fifth straight loss on Saturday in their 20-point decision. Nicholson, who continues to be touted as an All-American candidate by the Bonnies, connected on all but three of his 15 field goal chances and also blocked three shots for the squad. Demitrius Conger was the only other player on the team to score in double figures as he tallied 10 points to go along with his seven boards. Leading the team in both scoring and rebounds, Nicholson is dropping in 16.5 ppg and pulling down almost eight boards per outing as he shoots 57.0 percent from the floor. However, if there's a knock on Nicholson it is that he has delivered just 21 assists in 24 starts. Conger (11.7 ppg, 5.6 rpg) has been great support for Nicholson when he's been slightly less productive.
Fordham dug itself a deep hole after only 20 minutes of action against the Billikens, scoring a meager 16 points by intermission, so there was little chance of the Rams rebounding and making a serious run in front of a road crowd. Chris Gaston managed to post 14 points and pull down seven rebounds, while Bryan Smith tacked on 10 points and Kervin Bristol a game-high 14 rebounds, but the center shot just 1-of-7 from the field and finished with three points. Gaston, now 12th on the school�s career scoring list with 1,348 points, paces the program after 25 games with his 16.6 ppg and is also tops on the unit with 10.0 rpg, making him one of only a few in the nation who is averaging a double-double this late into the season. Brendan Frazier (11.6 ppg) is shooting just 36.8 percent from the field and 28.1 percent from three- point range, but he has handed out 100 assists so having him on the floor is still a positive for the Rams.
Fordham has been strong at home this season, but even though Bristol might be able to put up some numbers in the paint, there's no way he can handle both Nicholson and Conger at the same time.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: St. Bonaventure 72, Fordham 53
02/22 10:35:47 ET