George Washington (10-19) at Dayton (18-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 3, 12:00 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: UD Arena (13,266) -- Dayton, Ohio. Television: CBSSN. Home Record: GW 6-8, UD 12-4. Away Record: GW 2-10, UD 3-7. Neutral Record: GW 2-1, UD 3-0. Conference Record: GW 5-10, UD 8-7. Series Record: George Washington leads, 15-12.
GAME NOTES: The Atlantic 10 regular-season schedule comes to a close today, as the Dayton Flyers host the George Washington Colonials at UD Arena.
George Washington has fallen on hard times over the past month, dropping eight of its last 10 contests. The Colonials were in action this past Wednesday, falling at home to La Salle in a 60-56 final. They will be either the No. 11 or 12 seed for the upcoming A-10 Tournament, which will be played at campus sites beginning on Tuesday.
Dayton dropped into a three-way tie for sixth place in the conference standings with Wednesday's 82-71 setback at Richmond. Prior to that loss, the Flyers had won four of their previous five contests and appeared to be rounding into form under first-year 33-year-old head coach Archie Miller. Still, the Flyers have clinched at least a first-round home game in the A-10 tourney.
GW leads the all-time series, 15-12, although Dayton has claimed each of the last three meetings at UD Arena.
In the Colonials' latest outing against La Salle, they scored nine straight points to climb to within one point with 21 seconds to play in regulation. Trailing 58-56 with nine seconds remaining, senior Tony Taylor could not get a potential game-tying layup to fall and La Salle held on for the win. It was a tough loss to swallow for the Colonials, who lost for the first time this season when shooting 50 percent or better from the floor, as they gave up a key 17-9 advantage to La Salle in points off turnovers. Junior David Pellom shot 7-of-9 off the bench, finishing with a team-high 16 points and 11 rebounds. In the process, he became the first GW player in 23 seasons to notch four consecutive double-doubles. Aaron Ware and Lasan Kromah rounded out the double-digit scorers with 10 points apiece. Over its last five halves, GW has shot a dismal 13.3 percent from beyond the arc (4-of-30), including a 2-of-8 effort in Wednesday's loss. Surprisingly, it is the same GW squad that led the nation in three-point percentage (.486) after the season's first two weeks. Top scorers Taylor (13.2 ppg) and Kromah (11.0 ppg) have both seen their long- range shooting drop off in conference play.
Meanwhile, Dayton boasts five players with 30 or more threes on the season, led by Chris Johnson's 63 (.399). Overall, UD is fourth in the A-10 with 7.8 three-pointers per game. The Flyers also lead the league and rank fifth nationally in free-throw shooting, at 76.8 percent. In fact, they have shot 70 percent or better from the charity stripe in 12 straight games. Guard Kevin Dillard, in his first year at Dayton after transferring from Southern Illinois, leads the team in scoring with 12.9 ppg and ranks second in the conference with his 5.9 assists per tilt. Johnson is right on his heals with 12.8 ppg and is pulling down a team-best 6.5 rebounds per contest. He has really picked up his play of late, scoring in double figures in seven consecutive games and reaching 20-plus in four of his last six. During that six-game span, Johnson is averaging 19.5 points and 8.7 rebounds while shooting nearly 40 percent from the perimeter, and 87 percent from the foul line. His improved play has helped make up for the loss of starting swingman Josh Benson, who was averaging 10.9 points and shooting 61 percent from the floor until tearing his ACL 14 games into the season. Additionally, since being inserted into the starting lineup against Duquesne, Devin Oliver has averaged 7.3 rebounds.
At UD Arena this season, Dayton is 12-4 and has posted 72.7 ppg. Coming off a tough loss at Richmond earlier this week, look for the Flyers to get back on track in front of their home crowd leading into next week's A-10 tourney.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Dayton 71, George Washington 67
03/03 10:39:31 ET