GAME THREAD: FAU vs. Charlotte - 01/30/14 @ 7:00 PM
What: FAU (7-13, 2-3 C-USA) vs Charlotte (12-7, 3-3 C-USA)
When: Thursday, January 31th @ 7:00 PM
Where: Halton Arena
Charlotte Team Site: Here
Live Video: 49ers All Access *FEE
Radio: ESPN 106.3
Internet Broadcast Info
Live Stats: Here
G Ben Cherry 6.8 ppg
G Pierria Henry 12.4 ppg
G Terrence Williams 11.1 ppg
F Willie Clayton 11.8 ppg
C Mike Thorne, JR 10.1 ppg
G Marquan Botley 9.6 ppg
G Jackson Trapp 10.3 ppg
G Pablo Bertone 18.1 ppg
F Kelvin Penn 4.4 ppg
C Justin Raffington 9.6 ppg
This is the first meeting for the programs.
Charlotte at a Glance:
While their overall record and conference mark of 3-3 may not support the notion, the 49ers have proved they are a squad to be reckoned with at times. The team is 2-0 on the season against Top 25 foes after putting down Kansas State 68-61, and Michigan 63-61 back in November. Unranked but contentious Florida State handed them their most lopsided set back in convincing fashion 106-62.
Charlotte's defense can be porous, and gives up 73.9 ppg (14th C-USA). This was self evident last Saturday as the 49ers allowed Rice to drop 36 points from downtown. The 49ers have the potential to counter though with a conference best 37.5% from long range. This is ironic considering the fact that Charlotte does not have a scorer listed amongst the top 20 league players.
However, sophomore forward Willie Clayton's 9.3 rebounds is good enough for 2nd overall and is helping them to a +4.6 grabs per game surplus. Clayton also owns the shooting percentage title with a noteworthy 63.5% connect rate.
Guard play is the bread and butter for the 49ers (66.8% total attempts) offense, but they have four starters in double figures and will look to feed it inside against smaller opponents given the chance. This is due to the confidence provided in consistent strong post scoring efforts from Clayton, who has 18 straight double-digit efforts, and center Mike Thorne, JR. At 6-11, 257 lbs, Thorne (10.1 ppg) is one of the biggest players in the conference, and can be a challenging task to defend.
Having recently lost one of the program's all-time greats in Lew Massey (1956-2014), the 49ers will receive an extra point of motivation to play for on Thursday night when they return to Halton Arena after two games on the road. Massey, who passed away last Thursday, claims the 2nd most points in school history with 2,149 scored and was a key cog in Charlotte's run to the Final Four in 1977.
Charlotte is 7-2 at home on the season, with their only losses coming against Davidson (87-78 OT), and Georgia Tech (58-55). In contests decided by five points or less they claim a 5-3 overall mark.
FAU at a Glance:
One step forward, two steps back. Not too long ago, the Owls were clicking on all cylinders and able polish off a team with top 25 consideration in Harvard. Immediately thereafter, they can't overcome a slow start and fall 66-57 to rival Florida International.
Pablo Bertone was once again the leading scorer although all of his points came in the second half. The Senior now needs just 55 more to become the schools 11th player to have reached 1,000 or more for their career.
However, the dagger came recently when the Owls learned that Dragan Sekelja will be out for at least two more games as he tends to a tender back. Accordingly, while not as speedy as the Panthers, FAU is going to have their hands full with Charlotte's front court.
"We'll mix it up with different types of coverage, both team and individual", remarked Jarvis on the strategy to contain Thorne.
Jarvis also indicated that Rich Morrow will likely see more time in a key reserve role to relieve Penn or Raffington - forcing the Owls to employ a small lineup at times.
The Owls claim only one win on the season away from FAU Arena, a 73-68 victory over Rice in Houston, TX on January 11th. FAU has held their last five foes to an average shooting percentage of 39.4%, which they hope will continue into Thursday night.
"They (Charlotte) can score, so what we've got to do is make them play a lot of defense", Jarvis said. "We might hold the ball a little longer than normal."
Justin Raffington notched another double-double against FIU, bringing him to eight on the season. This places Raffington 24th in the nation in the category, while he sits 36th overall in rebounds.
Owl's Nest Prediction
The 49ers can flat out shoot the rock. While statistically close in other areas of importance, the Owls have yet to show they can do the same on the road. Sekelja's being out is not helping. Unless FAU can connect at 45% or better in both categories, this one is going the home team's way.
Rick saidTonight's Starters:
G Pierria Henry
G Ben Cherry
G Terrence Williams
F Willie Clayton
C Mike Thorne
G Marquan Botley
G Jackson Trapp
G Pablo Bertone
F Kelvin Penn
C Justin RaffingtonPosted On: Jan 30th 2014, 7:05 PM
is Dragon a go?