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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, February 15, 7 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Leede Arena (2,100) -- Hanover, New Hampshire. Television: None. Home Record: Princeton 7-4, Dartmouth 4-5. Away Record: Princeton 4-3, Dartmouth 2-9. Neutral Record: Princeton 0-0, Dartmouth 0-0. Conference Record: Princeton 4-1, Dartmouth 2-4. Series Record: Princeton leads, 142-61.
GAME NOTES: The Princeton Tigers begin a four-game road swing on Friday night when they take on the Dartmouth Big Green in an Ivy League showdown at Leede Arena.
Princeton is fresh off a season-long six-game homestand, and while it won its first five contests during that stretch, it fell to Yale last Saturday, 69-65. The Tigers are still in the midst of a strong season at 11-8 overall, and they sit a half game behind Harvard for first place with a 4-1 league ledger.
Dartmouth won back-to-back games for the first time all season following wins over Yale (71-62) and Columbia (60-57) earlier this month, but it fell back to its losing ways on Sunday with a 79-56 loss at the hands of Cornell. The Big Green have won just six of its 20 games this season, and they a situated in a tie for last place in the league at 2-4.
Princeton has dominated the all-time series versus Dartmouth, going 142-61, which includes a streak of six straight wins in recent years. The Tigers have even had the Big Green's number at Leede Arena (23-7).
Princeton dug itself an eight-point hole at the half its last time out, and even though it shot a lofty 57.7 percent from the field after intermission, it wasn't nearly enough to overcome Yale, as it suffered a four-point setback. Denton Koon led the way for the Tigers with 16 points, doing so on 6-of-11 from the field. Ian Hummer tallied 14 points and six assists, but he was plagued by seven turnovers, while Will Barrett (11 points) and T.J. Bray (nine points, seven assists, five steals) also put together noteworthy performances. Princeton's scoring offense hasn't been much to brag about this season (63.5 ppg), but it has risen to the top of the Ivy League standings thanks to its top-ranked scoring defense (57.5 ppg). Hummer is perhaps the league's best playmaker, as he ranks in the top five in scoring (15.7 ppg), rebounding (6.5 rpg), and assists (4.5 apg) all while shooting 51.8 percent from the field. Koon (10.2 ppg), Bray (8.9 ppg), and Barrett (8.9 ppg) have all been productive in support of Hummer.
Dartmouth didn't stand much of a chance against Cornell the last time out, as it was outshot from the field, 50.9 percent to 28.6 percent, while committing 18 turnovers en route to its blowout loss. Tyler Melville (12 points) and Alex Mitola (10 points) were the only two players to net double figures for the Big Green, but the pair combined to shoot just 6-of-21 from the field. Dartmouth has established a common theme this season of putting together poor shooting performances, as it ranks last in the Ivy League in scoring offense (60.9 ppg) while shooting just 39.9 percent from the field and 69.2 percent from the foul line. Mitola leads the way with 10.4 ppg, doing most of his damage from beyond the arc with 43 3-pointers, and he actually shoots a higher percentage from 3- point range (.381) than he does from the field overall (.370). Gabas Maldunas is solid in the low post with 10.1 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 1.1 spg and 0.9 bpg.
It's been more than a month since Princeton has played a road game, so a sluggish start could be in the cards. That said, the Tigers are the much better team so expect them to prevail.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Princeton 66, Dartmouth 56
02/15 10:32:07 ET
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