Gardner-Webb looks to sweep USC Upstate
Gardner-Webb (8-14, 4-6) vs. South Carolina Upstate (10-14, 5-6)
G.B. Hodge Center, Spartanburg, South Carolina; Saturday, 4:30 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: South Carolina Upstate seeks revenge on Gardner-Webb after dropping the first matchup in Boiling Springs. The teams last faced each other on Jan. 18, when the Runnin’ Bulldogs outshot South Carolina Upstate from the field 51.9 percent to 46.6 percent and hit 12 more free throws en route to the 16-point victory.
BIG MEN ON CAMPUS: Everette Hammond has put up 14.5 points and 4.5 rebounds to lead the way for the Spartans. Tommy Bruner is also a top contributor, accounting for 14.1 points per game. The Runnin’ Bulldogs have been led by Eric Jamison Jr., who is averaging 13.7 points and 5.5 rebounds.
RAMPING IT UP: The Spartans have scored 71.9 points per game against conference opponents so far, an improvement from the 63.1 per game they managed in non-conference play.EFFECTIVE EVERETTE: Hammond has connected on 30.9 percent of the 94 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 5 of 13 over his last five games. He’s also converted 84.5 percent of his foul shots this season.
YET TO WIN: The Runnin’ Bulldogs are 0-9 when they score 64 points or fewer and 8-5 when they exceed 64 points. The Spartans are 0-13 when they fail to score more than 72 points and 10-1 on the season, otherwise.
ASSIST RATIOS: The Runnin’ Bulldogs have recently used assists to create buckets more often than the Spartans. South Carolina Upstate has 38 assists on 87 field goals (43.7 percent) over its past three outings while Gardner-Webb has assists on 48 of 75 field goals (64 percent) during its past three games.
TOUGHENING UP: Gardner-Webb’s defense has forced 13.1 turnovers per game this season, but is averaging 16.3 takeaways over its last three games.