The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, December 28, 10 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Lawlor Events Center (11,536) -- Reno, Nevada. Television: None. Home Record: Yale 2-1, Nevada 7-1. Away Record: Yale 1-4, Nevada 1-3. Neutral Record: Yale 1-2, Nevada 0-0. Conference Record: Yale 0-0, Nevada 0-0. Series Record: Nevada leads, 1-0.
GAME NOTES: The Yale Bulldogs are set to begin a four-game road swing with a visit to the Lawlor Events Center for a non-conference tilt against the red hot Nevada Wolf Pack.
The Bulldogs improved to 4-7 on the season their last time out with an easy 112-63 rout of Albertus Magnus of the NCAA's Division III. Yale has been up and down this season as it earned notable victories over Buffalo (63-59) and Army (86-83 2OT), but also suffered double-digit setbacks to Western Illinois (59-47), Vermont (65-52), and Saint Joseph's (61-35). Now in his 14th season at the helm of the program, coach James Jones will need to figure out an effective offensive system to help Yale improve upon its 59.2 point per game average versus Division I foes. The team has allowed its opponents to net 66.1 ppg.
David Carter's Wolf Pack earned its fourth consecutive victory on Dec. 21 with an 84-74 decision over NAIA program Cal State San Marcos. Nevada knocked off Washington (76-73), Cal Poly (69-56), and San Francisco (59-51) prior to their win over CSUSM. The Wolf Pack have only lost by more than 10 points once this season and are sporting a near perfect 7-1 mark at home. Nevada will look to improve to a 9-4 overall record in this one. It should have no problem putting points on the board in this one as the team comes in with averages of 73.8 points and 13.6 assists per game.
This will be just the second meeting in history between these schools. Nevada won the first encounter, which took place in 1969.
In their last road game, the Bulldogs were handed a 64-56 loss by New Hampshire after they connected on 37.8 percent of their field goal attempts with just one make on 14 attempts from beyond the arc. They also struggled to control the ball and committed 18 turnovers. New Hampshire shot a much more efficient 45.3 percent from the floor including a 6-of-18 mark from three- point range. Jeremiah Kreisberg came off the bench to pace Yale with 14 points and eight boards. Austin Morgan (12) and Justin Sears (10) also scored in double figures in the loss. Morgan and Sears are the only two Bulldogs with double-digit scoring averages as they are combining for 23.8 ppg.
The Wolf Pack were tested by CSU San Marcos their last time out as they held just a 37-35 halftime lead over the NAIA program. It took a collective effort to hang on for the win as Jerry Evans Jr. led five players in double figures with 18 points. The team's leading scorer Deonte Burton (16.8 ppg) was not among those who netted 10 or more as he was held to just four points on 2-of-4 shooting from the field. Malik Story added 14, which dropped his scoring average to 15.8 ppg. Evans Jr. is leading Nevada with 5.1 rpg, as the team is still outrebounding its foes by a slight 0.9 rebound per contest margin as four of his teammates are grabbing at least four boards per game.
The one-two punch of Burton and Story in Nevada's backcourt is very unlikely to submit quiet performances in back-to-back outings. Yale does not have enough offensive firepower to run up and down with the hosts, so it will need to keep the possessions to a minimum to pull off the upset in this one.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Nevada 71, Yale 59
12/28 10:31:54 ET