Eastern Washington (0-1) at Cal State Northridge (1-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, November 12, 10:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: The Matadome (1,600) -- Northridge , California. Television: None. Home Record: EWU 0-0, CSUN 0-0. Away Record: EWU 0-0, CSUN 0-0. Neutral Record: EWU 0-0, CSUN 0-0. Conference Record: EWU 0-0, CSUN 0-0. Series Record: Eastern Washington leads, 10-8.
GAME NOTES: The Cal State Northridge Matadors try to remain perfect in the early 2012-2013 season when they host the Eastern Washington Eagles.
EWU is 0-1 after an 88-69 loss at Washington State in its season opener. The Eagles made only 34.7 percent of their field goal attempts and just 4-of-12 at the charity stripe in the loss. EWU finished last season 15-17 overall in Jim Hayford's first year at the helm of the program. Hayford also led the school to its first Big Sky Conference Tournament win since 2006. He came to the program after a successful 10-year tenure at Whitworth, which he turned into a NCAA Division III powerhouse.
Northridge is riding the momentum of its 81-75 win over Pepperdine. The Matadors overcame a 13-point deficit in the final 13:17 of the contest to move to 1-0. CSUN shot 52 percent from the field and 20-of-21 at the charity stripe to collect the victory. Coach Bobby Braswell's team finished 7-21 overall in his 16th season at the helm of the program. Braswell last led CSUN to the Big West Tournament Championship in 2009.
This will be the 19th meeting in history between these programs. EWU holds a 10-8 edge in the rivalry's history, but CSUN has won the last two games.
EWU may have its first superstar on campus since Rodney Stuckey departed as Saint Joseph's transfer Justin Crosgile was sensational in his debut. Crosgile poured in a team-high 28 points, made seven three-pointers, and dished out five assists versus Washington State. Another new face sure to make an impact is Venky Jois. The Australian freshman is a solid rebounder and is already one of EWU's best post players. Parker Kelly is a solid off-guard with deadly three-point shooting ability.
Freshman guard Donovan Johnson played the role of hero in his debut with Northridge. The rookie swingman came off the bench to score a team-high 19 points on 7-of-10 shooting in just 24 minutes of action. Josh Greene made 9- of-10 from the charity stripe on his way to 16 points and forward Stephen Maxwell posted 15 points and six rebounds. Stephan Hicks had 10 points and seven rebounds in the season opener, but expect bigger things out of the sophomore guard. Hicks was the Big West Freshman of the Year a season ago after averaging 15.1 points and 7.1 rebounds per game in his rookie campaign.
This evenly matched contest will be decided in the rebounding battle and turnover margin. The Eagles are at a disadvantage as the road team, but they will be hungry to redeem themselves after a double-digit loss to open the year. Hicks has to be more assertive as CSUN can not rely on Johnson just yet.
Sport Network Predicted Outcome: Eastern Washington 77, CS-Northridge 75
11/12 10:38:28 ET