Akron (18-4) at Miami-Ohio (8-12)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 9, 1 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Millett Hall (6,600) -- Oxford, Ohio. Television: ESPNU. Home Record: Akron 12-0, Miami 5-5. Away Record: Akron 4-3, Miami 3-8. Neutral Record: Akron 2-1, Miami 0-0. Conference Record: Akron 9-0, Miami 3-6. Series Record: Series tied, 24-24.
GAME NOTES: The Akron Zips look to extend their nation's best 14-game winning streak on Saturday as they venture to Millett Hall to square off with the Miami-Ohio RedHawks.
This matchup will break the all-time series tie between these schools. Both have won 24 times against the other. The Zips have won four straight in the series, including a 65-60 road win in Oxford last year. Akron is 8-17 in Oxford, having won two of their last three games at Millett Hall.
Akron kept control of sole possession of first place in the MAC standings on Tuesday as it coasted to an 68-56 victory over Central Michigan. The Zips' 14- game winning streak is the longest active streak of any current Division I program and their 9-0 mark in league play makes them the only team in the MAC without a loss to a conference foe.
Coach Keith Dambrot's squad is outscoring its opponents by 11.8 in league action thanks to its conference leading average of 75.0 ppg. The Zips also have the third-best scoring defense in the MAC, allowing only 62.5 ppg. Senior center Zeke Marshall posts 12.6 points, 6.9 rebounds, and 3.5 blocks per contest while Demetrius Treadwell contributes 10.8 points and 7.5 boards a game. Marshall is the MAC's all-time and active NCAA career blocked shots leader (323). Junior point guard Alex Abreu is also valuable to Akron's success as he deals out 6.0 assists per tilt. Abreu played a huge role in the team' victory over the Chippewas as tallied 15 points and seven assists in the win.
The Zips shot 49.1 percent from the floor (26-of-53 and 37.0 percent from long range, while limiting the Chippewas to 41.2 percent (21-of-51) shooting to earn the 12-point triumph. Treadwell added 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting from the floor while Akron won the rebounding battle, 33-26. The win improved the Zips to 9-0 in league play for the first time ever.
The RedHawks suffered their fifth loss in six games on Wednesday in heartbreaking fashion as Toledo's Nathan Boothe connected on a 3-pointer at the buzzer to hand Miami a 65-64 loss. The setback downed their league record to 3-6, which put them in a three-way tie with Kent State and Buffalo for last place in the East Division standings.
Coach John Cooper's unit shot 46.8 percent from the floor while allowing the Rockets to drain 51.1 percent of their field goals. Allen Roberts had his second straight strong showing with 15 points on 6-of-12 shooting. Freshman guard Reggie Johnson scored a team-high 16 points, while Geovonie McKnight and Will Felder provided 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Miami is averaging 4.6 points less than its opposition this season. The RedHawks are one of the most generous teams in the MAC, allowing 69.7 ppg on 48.2 percent shooting from the field. Roberts is leading Miami with 12.9, while Felder (11.7 ppg, 5.6 rpg) and Johnson (9.1 ppg) are both capable of filling it up on occasion as well.
The RedHawks do not match up well with Akron, which has an all-league caliber player at each position. Marshall's presence in the paint on both ends has turned him into the frontrunner for MAC Player of the Year, as his team has seemed invincible for some time now.
Sports Network Predicted Network: Akron 72, Miami-Ohio 64
02/09 10:37:40 ET