HARTFORD (3-8, 0-0) at SACRED HEART (2-7, 0-0)
Sunday, December 15th - 2:00 PM - Pitt Center (2,062)
Setting the Scene... The Sacred Heart Pioneers welcome the Hartford Hawks to town for a Sunday afternoon tilt in the William H. Pitt Center. Sacred Heart is looking to rebound from a 86-79 home loss to Lafayette last weekend. Hartford comes into this afternoon following a 73-59 loss to Central Connecticut on Tuesday night. Sacred Heart is still looking for its first home victory.
Last Time Out... The Pioneers were defeated 86-79 to Lafayette last Saturday afternoon in the Pitt Center. SHU had four players score in double digits but could not overcome a hot shooting Lafayette team that finished the game 33-60 from the field (55%). The Pioneers led for most of the second half, but finished the final 7:01 of the game 2 of 9 from the field.
Hartford vs SHU Series Notes... Saturday afternoon is the 20th meeting between SHU and Hartford.
- The series dates back to 1970 and the Pioneers lead 12-7
- The teams have met eight times during SHU's Division I era (1999-Present). Hartford won the first four meetings but SHU is riding a four-game winning streak over the Hawks.
- In the last year's meeting, junior guard Wes Cole knocked down 4 three-pointers on his way to 14 points in just 17 minutes. Louis Montes led the Pioneers with 13 points and 10 rebounds.
Pioneers vs. the America East...SHU is 41-29 all-time when facing the America East Conference.
- SHU was 1-2 in meetings last year, losing to Hartford, and going 1-1 against Stony Brook.
- The Pioneers have faced every team from the league, posting winning records against Albany (8-5), Hartford (12-7), New Hampshire (2-0) and Stony Brook (16-5). SHU is even with Binghamton (1-1) and has a losing record against Maine (0-3), UMBC (2-7) and Vermont (0-2).
- This is Sacred Heart's first of two match-ups with the America East this season. SHU will travel to take on New Hampshire on January 4th.
Scouting the Hawks... Picked to finish fourth in the America East, Hartford (3-8) has struggled of late, losing six of its last seven games. The Hawks are led by Mark Nwakamma and Yolonzo Moore II, who are both scoring in double digits. Nwakamma leads the Hawks, averaging 16.4 points per game to go along with 6.5 boards. Hartford's three victories this season have come against Fairfield (63-53), Fairleigh Dickinson (74-60), and Holy Cross (90-78).
Balanced Scoring... Sacred Heart has four players averaging double figures in scoring through nine games this season. Evan Kelley leads the Pioneers with 14.8 points per game. Chris Evans is scoring 14.0 points per game, having scored in double figures in seven of the last eight games. Louis Montes is putting up 11.2 points per game while Steve Glowiak is averaging 11.4 points a contest off the bench.
Downright Offensive... Sacred Heart currently leads in the Northeast Conference in scoring offense, scoring an average of 75.3 points per game. The Pioneers are also second in the NEC in both field goal percentage (44.1), and three-point field goal percentage (36.4).
Barnett Burstin' Thru... Freshman De'Von Barnett was named NEC Rookie of the Week after playing his first two games in a SHU uniform last week. In Barnett's debut game, a 73-59 win over Hofstra, the 6'4'' wing put in 8 points on 4-6 shooting. Barnett followed that up Saturday afternoon with 8 more points, to go along with 4 rebounds and two steals in Sacred Heart's 86-79 setback to Lafayette. Barnett missed the Pioneers' first seven games with an injury.
That Gaetano is Scoring... Junior guard Phil Gaetano is averaging a career- high 8.3 points per game this season, to go along with his usual output of assists (5.0/gm). He set a new career-high in scoring at Boston College, putting in 16 points as he made four three-pointers. Over the last four games, Gaetano is shooting 44.1% from the field and 50.0% from the three-point arc (14-28). Gaetano is currently fourth in the NEC in three-point shooting at 44.7%. In his first two seasons at Sacred Heart, Gaetano averaged 4.5 points per game.
Glowiak From Three.. Steve Glowiak complete his fourth straight game in double digits last Saturday with ten points against Lafayette. Glowiak has drilled 13 three-pointers in the past three games and has scored in double digits in four consecutive games (15, 17, 18, 10). He is currently first in the NEC in three-point field goal percentage at 49% (25-51), and 17th in scoring (11.4).
Kelley Back on Track... Following a 2 for 12 shooting performance in the Pioneers' overtime loss to Boston College, Evan Kelley has put in double digit points in the past three games. Most recently, Kelley knocked down 5-6 shots for a team-high 15 points against Lafayette. Kelley made 5-of-10 shots for 10 points at Lehigh, and then knocked down 5-9 shots for 14 points in the win over Hofstra. Kelley is the Pioneers' top scorer, averaging 14.8 points per game. He is eighth in the NEC in scoring and 13th in field goal percentage. Kelley scored a career-high 32 points in Sacred Heart's 122-118 double-overtime loss at Holy Cross on Nov. 13.
Assisting & Forcing Turnovers... The Pioneers are forcing an average of 14.0 turnovers a game this season, leading to a turnover margin of +1.22 (2nd in the NEC). The Pioneers are second the NEC in averaging 14.44 assists per game in eight games this season. Sacred Heart racked up 23 assists to just three turnovers in its 73-59 win over Hofstra. The 23:3 turnover/assist ratio is the single best in the country this season.