GAME THREAD: American vs FAU - 11/24/12 @ 1:00 PM
GAME THREAD: American vs FAU - 11/24/12 @ 1:00 PM
What: American (2-2) vs FAU (1-3)
When: Saturday, Nov. 24th @ 1:00 PM
Where: FAU Arena
Live Video: None
Internet Broadcast: Here
Live Stats: Here
Eagles Team Site: Here
G Daniel Munoz 10.2 ppg
G John Schoof 6.2 ppg
G Jesse Reed 2.2 ppg
F Kyle Kager 1.5 ppg
F Stephen Lumpkins 15.5 ppg
G Jackson Trapp 7.0 ppg
G Greg Gantt 13.3 ppg
G Pablo Bertone 7.3 ppg
F Jordan McCoy 6.5 ppg
C Dragan Sekelja 4.5 ppg
12/18/90 A L 72-80
11/21/09 A W 81-69
11/20/10 H L 72-82
11/16/11 A L 56-62
The Owls are 1-3 against the Eagles during the 22 year span of the all-time series, which dates back to the program's 2nd year of existence. The average margin of victory for the winning team in the four tilts is nine points.
Last time on the hardwood, American cashed in on FAU's 18 point first half tally to hang on for a 62-56 win. While enjoying a 45-32 edge off the glass, the Owls shot a paltry 22.2% (4-of-18) from long distance.
Former Eagle Charles Hinkle dropped a whopping 27 points, including a 12-of-14 showing at the free throw line, to lead all scorers.
American at a Glance:
The more things change, the more they stay the same, as the Eagles recently returned to the well of Stephen Lumpkins for a drink of offense. After trying out professional baseball for a spell (Kansas City Royals, 2011 draft), the former 2nd Team All-Patriot recipient had second thoughts and has rejoined the roster for AU.
He has an unorthodox playing style, appearing herky-jerky, and quirky, at times. But his numbers don't follow suite - as shown by performances of 23 points and 9 rebounds, and 22 points and 15 rebounds, against the Owls in the two meetings he has been a part of (11-21-09, 11-20-10).
Having taken 52.5% (82-156) of the squad's total shots thus far through four contests, he is the go-to guy, and does not disappoint ion that duty given a 63.6% success rate.
The other factor to be reckoned with when American has the ball comes in SR PG Daniel Munoz. His numbers aren't stellar, but he is a scrappy player, hustles at all times, and is second on the squad in scoring output.
Having only 46 tries from beyond the arc notched on the season - which is less than half their oppositions attempts - the Eagles are content to look for two-point baskets to make a living.
American lost 30 points in scoring production from the 2011-12 roster with the departures of Hinkle and Troy Brewer (11.5 ppg). Hinkle led the team in scoring 22 times during 2011-12, but that duty has obviously shifted to Lumpkins now.
AU was picked to finish third in the Patriot League by conference coaches, with all first place nods going to either Lehigh (12) or Bucknell (4). They sit 336th nationally in scoring with 53.0 ppg, however are 125th in shooting efficiency sporting a 44.9% mark from the floor overall.
The Eagles are coming off a 53-67 loss to San Francisco, which is coached by former FAU head man Rex Walters.
They shot lights out in the first period (61.9%), but cooled in the second (42.9%). The Dons maintained a +9 rebound advantage, and went 7-of-8 at the line, both of which proved to be difference makers in the contest as most other statistical markers were relatively even.
FAU at a Glance:
The Owls finished Maui Invitational mainland action 1-3 to open the 2012-13 slate.
Losses to UNC and Mississippi State were predictable, but in all reality the team should be at .500 at this juncture. Unfortunately, surrendering a 13 point 2nd half lead to Elon in the final tilt did not help matters, resulting in a 59-62 loss in overtime.
Starting out the stint at the PG spot, now leading scorer Stefan Moody (14.0 ppg) was reassigned to the two spot, and will stay there as a primary role from here forward. He's done well in production since, enjoying a team best 40.0% mark from long range, and has Jarvis content to stay put with Jackson Trapp getting the team into its offense.
"I am going to stay with Trapp, because in the long run he is most ideally suited with his size", said Jarvis. "He can defend, and if he takes his time can make open shots. He really knows how to play."
Cavon Baker will be the consistent choice as a back-up once groomed, although he is still adjusting to college play given marks of 27.8% and 16.7% in FG and 3PT respectively, and could still give way to Moody at times if needed.
Off topic for the future, Jarvis said that he will likely use the final remaining scholarship position for the 2013 class to bring in a natural point - similar to that of Ray Taylor, who transferred to FIU when things did not bode well in professional interest after leaving Florida Atlantic.
However, there is one change that should be noted in the line-up on Saturday. And that lies in the "soon to see many minutes" recipient Chris Bryant. While awaiting NCAA clearance, Bryant was not able to fully cash in on practice rolls made available to others in game preparation, falling slightly behind until the past week. That is now out of the way.
"He was practicing, but it was different because he wasn't eligible", explained Jarvis. "Now that he is back, he'll start getting time. You'll see him early, and hopefully often. (His) Defense and rebounding…I think will set things up."
Javier Lacunza, who has been sidelined with an arm injury until recently, should also see limited time. Lacunza is an interesting addition at this stage, presenting a different defensive assignment for opposing teams.
"As we move forward, especially against zones, he can step away from the basket against bigger and slower guys and shoot it", Jarvis said. "He gives us that (at the power forward,) which our other guys really can't."
The Owls may also step away from traditional defensive formations to try and slow down Lumpkins, but will also look to limit any others from having a career milestone manifest itself on Saturday.
"You obviously have to pay attention to him, who knows, maybe we'll try a little gimmick stuff - a little box and one, triangle and two", said Jarvis. "But sometimes it's not about stopping him, it's about making sure that nobody else beats you. You stop the other guys, you win."
In what should be music to Fan's ears, Florida Atlantic has outshot all opponents collectively in free throw percentage thus far, enjoying a 72.1% to 54.8% advantage. This is up from last year's mark of 66.3%.
Owl's Nest Prediction
FAU has always had trouble with teams that play a deliberate style of offense. Arguably lacking in athleticism head-to-head, the Eagles are just that type of team. They are not going to lay down and get into a "one up" game, will battle, play strategically, and look for miscues to earn points.
Without a dynamic point to dish and feed, the Owls have to find a way to play the half court game more effectively. So far, they are struggling, often times attempting to force a shot rather than let the game come to them at the right point in time.
Worth noting is the insertion of Bryant, who will offer a solid defensive presence yet to be observed. And this change could help to slow Lumpkins.
Bottom line: Accuracy will play a prominent role against the Eagles. On paper, a 45% mark or better from the floor is needed.
If this happens, expect a close game, with the Owls narrowly on top when the final horn sounds.