Chattanooga (6-9) at The Citadel (3-9)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Thursday, January 10, 7:05 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: McAlister Fieldhouse (6,000) -- Charleston, South Carolina. Television: ESPN3.com. Home Record: UTC 4-6, The Citadel 3-3. Away Record: UTC 2-3, The Citadel 0-6. Neutral Record: UTC 0-0, The Citadel 0-0. Conference Record: UTC 1-2, The Citadel 0-2. Series Record: Chattanooga leads, 54-16.
GAME NOTES: The Citadel Bulldogs will try to snap an eight-game losing streak as they host the Chattanooga Mocs in a Southern Conference battle at McAlister Fieldhouse.
The Citadel showed some promise in the early stages with a 3-1 start, but its 72-55 setback to Western Carolina on Saturday marked its eighth loss in a row. The slide has dropped the Bulldogs to 3-9 overall, including an 0-2 SoCon standing. Coach Chuck Driesell's team is in the middle of the pack in the conference offensively with a 63.2 point per game average, but it is second to last in points allowed at 76.0 per contest.
John Shulman's Mocs picked up their fourth victory in five outings on Saturday by edging Samford, 74-70, on the road. The decision bumped Chattanooga up to a 6-9 overall record and a 1-1 mark in league play. UTC leads the SoCon in rebound margin (+5.8), rebounds per game (38.7) and offensive rebound percentage (.370) while ranking second in defensive rebound percentage (.725).
Chattanooga is 54-16 all-time against the Bulldogs in a series that dates back to the 1925-26 campaign. The Citadel escaped the last encounter with a 48-46 decision on Feb. 18, 2012.
The Mocs will be much tougher to hold below 50 points this season with Z Mason spearheading the balanced and efficient attack. Mason and Gee McGhee both tallied 17 points for UTC versus Samford. The strong showing left Mason with team-leading averages of 13.6 points and 7.0 rebounds. Chattanooga was able to overcome 18 turnovers by winning the rebounding battle, 30-17. McGhee is producing just over 10 points per game while Ronrico White continues to demand attention. White has been quiet since contributing 21 points, six rebounds, and four assists in UTC's seven-point victory over High Point on Dec. 28.
The Bulldogs have not been too impressive offensively in their recent action. They shot at a decent rate of 43.8 percent from the floor, but managed just 55 points versus WCU due to their poor rebounding and frequent turnovers. The Catamounts attempted nine more field goals and eight more free throws in the contest, and they converted an efficient 47.4 percent of their shots. Marshall Harris III and P.J. Horgan netted 10 points apiece for The Citadel in the loss. Senior center Mike Groselle paces the team with 14.4 points and 7.3 boards per game. Groselle will be looking to bounce back after recording season lows in points (8) and rebounds (3) versus WCU.
The Citadel has lost its last seven games by 13 points or more each. The Bulldogs will continue to fight until their losing streak is snapped, but Mason may be too tough of a defensive assignment for any of the Bulldogs to handle.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Chattanooga 74, The Citadel 67
01/10 10:34:01 ET