Hawaii (15-10) at Pacific (14-10)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 16, 10 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Alex G. Spanos Center (6,150) -- Stockton, California. Television: None. Home Record: Hawaii 11-5, Pacific 10-2. Away Record: Hawaii 3-5, Pacific 2-7. Neutral Record: Hawaii 1-0, Pacific 2-1. Conference Record: Hawaii 9-5, Pacific 8-4. Series Record: Pacific leads, 5-4.
GAME NOTES: A pair of teams fighting to remain close to the top of the Big West Conference standings get together at the Spanos Center on Saturday night, as the Pacific Tigers play host to the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors.
Hawaii, which had been cruising along with a season-high five-game win streak, bowed to UC Davis on the mainland two nights ago in a lopsided 89-65 final. With the defeat the Rainbow Warriors dropped to 9-5 in conference play which means they are in third place in the standings, just behind Pacific and Long Beach State.
The Tigers were also in action on Thursday, but unlike Hawaii their results were far more favorable as they snapped a two-game slide with a 66-59 triumph over visiting Cal State Northridge. The win boosted the team's league mark to 8-4.
Hawaii won the first meeting of the season in the middle of last month with a 60-52 final at home in Honolulu, which means the all-time series now favors Pacific by a 5-4 margin.
Hauns Brereton recorded a team-best 17 points for the Rainbow Warriors a couple nights ago during their stop at UC Davis, but the team as a whole just could not keep up with the Aggies. Brandon Spearman responded with 12 points and Ozren Pavlovic 10 points in a mere six minutes off the bench, but still the group could not overcome 17 turnovers while the defense watched the hosts shoot 11-of-19 behind the 3-point line.
Christian Standhardinger, who came up small two nights ago, continues to lead the program in both scoring (15.9 ppg) and rebounding (13.8 ppg), although he can be a liability if his 64.6 percent shooting at the free-throw line gets in the way. Vander Joaquim, who also had a sub-par effort versus Davis, is second in both scoring (13.8 ppg) and rebounding (7.9 rpg) as the team generates a healthy 74.0 ppg.
Generally, when a team turns the ball over as many as 18 times, the chances of coming out on top are decreased dramatically, but in the case of the Tigers against CSUN, the hosts were still able to pull out the victory. Travis Fulton helped to make sure of that with his 16 points on 7-of-9 shooting from the floor, followed by Rodrigo De souza who converted 3-of-5 beyond the arc en route to his 15 points in 25 minutes off the bench.
Even though Pacific doesn't have an overwhelming offense (67.9 ppg), the team is still making it work in their favor as they hold the opposition to just 64.2 ppg. Lorenzo McCloud stands as the only player scoring in double figures at the moment with his 11.1 ppg, but there are three others who are producing at least 8.5 rpg which means there is great balance for the group at the offensive end of the floor.
Assuming Standhardinger and Joaquim are ready to bounce back from weak efforts the other night, the Rainbow Warriors should be able to control the action in the paint and take the win on the road as a result.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Hawaii 68, Pacific 64
02/16 10:45:10 ET