FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: David Beall, email@example.com
SPARTANBURG, S.C. – After dropping its first home game in over a year Thursday evening in overtime, the USC Upstate men's basketball team will look to get back on track Saturday afternoon against Stetson, welcoming the Hatters to the Hodge Center for a national broadcast on ESPN3.
The matchup between the Spartans (8-8, 2-1 A-Sun) and Hatters (6-10, 3-2 A-Sun) features the third and fourth place teams in the league standings respectively and will be the 10th overall meeting between the two programs. Tip-off is set for 5:03 p.m. EST and can be seen live on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app.
Date: Sat. Jan. 12 | 5:03 PM EST
Teams: USC Upstate (8-8, 2-1 A-Sun) vs. Stetson (6-10, 3-2 A-Sun)
Location: Spartanburg, S.C. | Hodge Center
TV: ESPN3 | TV Talent: Matt Smith (play-by-play), Jim Heenehan (Analyst)
Radio: ESPN Spartanburg 97.1 FM / 1400 AM | Radio Talent: Phil Cox (play-by-play)
Live Stats: PrestoSports Primetime
Twitter: @UPSTMBB | #UpstateHoops
- Upstate holds a 5-4 edge in the all-time series with Stetson, including three straight wins that all came by double-digits. The Spartans swept both contests a year ago, knocking off the Hatters 79-63 on the road, before coming back with a 90-72 rout in the Hodge Center to end the regular season.
- Despite an overtime loss to Florida Gulf Coast Thursday evening that snapped a 12-game home winning streak lasting over a full calendar year, Upstate has still managed to win 18 of its last 20 games inside the Hodge Center for a .900 winning percentage. Before the loss to the Eagles, the Spartans' winning streak had moved up to the 13th longest streak in the country.
- Ty Greene's career-high of five three-pointers made in a game has been reached five times in his 50-game collegiate career, including each of his last two contests. The defending A-Sun Freshman of the Year has made 10 of his last 19 treys to elevate his three-point field goal percentage to .360 and rank in the league's top 10. Greene is also currently fifth in the league in three-pointers made with 36.
- Torrey Craig reached the 20-point mark for the fourth time this season with a 24-point performance against Florida Gulf Coast. He also tallied a season-high 14 rebounds, just one shy of his career record. Craig now ranks second in the league in scoring (17.4 ppg) and sixth in the conference in rebounds per game (6.4).
- The scoring tandem of Stetson's Adam Pegg and Chris Perez is the second highest in the league, combining to average 30.2 points per game. The duo ranks fifth and sixth in the league respectively in scoring and account for over 42 percent of the team's offensive output.
- Upstate has knocked down 25 three-pointers the last two games and have needed just 50 attempts to do so. The Spartans currently lead the A-Sun in three-point field goal percentage at .351, while Stetson sits third at .345.
- The Spartans sport the second highest scoring offense in the league at 70.9 points per game, while Stetson is right on the heels of Upstate in third at 70.7. The Hatters have scored at least 81 points in three of their six wins this season, while Upstate has reached the 85-point mark in four of its eight victories.
- The Spartans continue to pound the glass, ranking third in the A-Sun in rebounds per game at 35.8 and leading the league in rebounding margin (+4.7) and defensive rebounds per game (31.0). Upstate has outrebounded its opponents in seven straight games, dating back to a road contest at Baylor on Dec. 17.
BRACKETOLOGY BREAKDOWN: Upstate was featured in Joe Lunardi's latest ESPN Bracketology as the representative from the Atlantic Sun to advance to the NCAA Tournament. The Spartans were featured as a play-in game in the EAST Region, taking on Norfolk State for the right to play top-seeded Duke. Five other opponents on the schedule this season were also picked in the latest bracketology, including Saint Louis, Kanas State, Tennessee State, UNC Asheville and Baylor.
AT HOME IN THE HODGE: Despite an overtime loss to Florida Gulf Coast Thursday evening that snapped a 12-game home winning streak lasting over a full calendar year, Upstate has still managed to win 18 of their last 20 games inside the Hodge Center for a .900 winning percentage. Before the loss to the Eagles, the Spartans winning streak had moved up to the 13th longest streak in the country.
MAXEY HONORED BY COLLEGE SPORTS MADNESS: After recording 21 points and 16 rebounds in wins over Hampton and Northern Kentucky, junior forward Jodd Maxey was named the College Sports Madness A-Sun Player of the Week. He was on the brink of his first collegiate double-double in both games, scoring 13 points and adding nine rebounds against Hampton, before coming back and scoring nine points to go along with seven rebounds at NKU."Jodd has made an improvement in his play here lately, particularly from a consistency standpoint," said Upstate head coach Eddie Payne. "He has been getting his points and rebounds, but he has also been more active defensively."
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: (Baylor's Scott Drew) "This is a game that as a coach, you know that your opponent is a lot better than people might realize. You can see them in the NCAA tournament winning a game."
(Kansas State's Bruce Weber) "They have a really good ball club. When we looked at it going into all these non-conference games they had 21 wins last year and the best turn-around in the country."
(Saint Louis' Jim Crews) "I thought they were good coming in, and I know they're good coming out. Every time we made a mistake, they drilled us every single time. It was uncanny. If we made a defensive slip, we got burned."