Pacific (5-5) at Saint Mary's-CA (7-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Wednesday, December 19, 10 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: McKeon Pavilion (3,500) -- Moraga, California. Television: None. Home Record: Pacific 3-2, SMC 4-0. Away Record: Pacific 0-2, SMC 2-0. Neutral Record: Pacific 2-1, SMC 1-2. Conference Record: Pacific 0-0, SMC 0-0. Series Record: Saint Mary's-CA leads, 65-43.
GAME NOTES: A couple of programs that clashed in Anaheim earlier this season get another look at each other on Wednesday, as the Saint Mary's-CA Gaels entertain the Pacific Tigers in non-conference action at McKeon Pavilion.
SMC has been perfect at home through four games here in 2012-13, picking up a massive 120-67 victory against Jackson State in its most recent outing on Dec. 11. The win was the third in a row for the team after it dropped back-to-back decisions on a neutral floor in November. The Gaels have also captured 13 straight wins at home against non-conference foes.
As for the Tigers, they had a brief two-game win streak snapped over the weekend as they bowed to Santa Clara at home in a 75-71 final. The loss dropped the team to an even .500 on the season.
Last month, the teams took part in the DirecTV Classic at the Anaheim Convention Center where the Tigers handed SMC its first loss of the season in a 76-66 final. Pacific had four starters score in double figures, led by Lorenzo McCloud with 18 points, as the team shot not just 53.1 percent from the floor overall, but also outscored the Gaels at the free-throw line, 21-9.
In that first encounter, Beau Levesque accounted for 18 points for Saint Mary's, followed by Matthew Dellavedova who dropped in 16 points as the pair combined to shoot 8-of-15 behind the 3-point line.
With the outcome in November, the all-time series between the squads now stands at 65-43 in favor of the Gaels.
The Tigers held Santa Clara to just 36.9 percent shooting from the floor over the weekend and yet the Broncos still found a way to escape with a four-point road win nonetheless. Sama Taku was responsible for 23 points and seven rebounds for the hosts, followed by Lorenzo McCloud with 12 points for a squad that made good on 9-of-18 from three-point range and still found a way to squander a quality effort. McCloud continues to be the leading scorer for the team overall with his 12.4 ppg, while Ross Rivera comes up with 10.5 ppg even though he is playing just 22.3 minutes per game and has come off the bench in three contests thus far. As a group, the Tigers are one of the better 3-point shooting teams at the moment with 40.5 percent accuracy and yet they don't have a single player who is considered a go-to guy out on the perimeter at this stage of the campaign.
Five players scored in double figures for the Gaels in their lopsided win over Jackson State the last time out, led by Dellavedova who scored 31 points, handed out eight assists and collected six rebounds, all while shooting 6-of-8 beyond the arc and a perfect 7-of-7 at the charity stripe. Brad Waldow added 21 points, James Walker III another 14, Jorden Page 13 points and Levesque a double-double off the bench with 10 points and a game-high 10 rebounds in a mere 15 minutes of action as the team shot a staggering 61.9 percent from the floor and 13-of-23 beyond the arc. Dellavedova has been remarkable in the early going this season, not only leading the team with his 19.8 ppg as he shoots 49.1 percent out on the perimeter and 93.3 percent at the charity stripe, he is also first on the unit with 53 assists as well. Waldow (12.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg) and Walker III (10.4 ppg) are both shooting better than 60 percent from the floor and that has lifted the entire team to 51.9 percent at this stage.
Being at home and having revenge as a motivating factor, the Gaels can't help but have the added incentive to get into the win column in this meeting.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Saint Mary's-CA 83, Pacific 69
12/19 10:38:55 ET