SACRED HEART (2-2) VS. LEHIGH (3-2)
Game 05 * Fairfield, CT * William H. Pitt Center * 2:00 pm
Setting the Scene... The Sacred Heart Pioneers welcome the Lehigh Mountain Hawks to the William H. Pitt Center for the 2012-13 home opener Sunday afternoon. The Pioneers return to the court one week after erasing a 12-point deficit with five minutes to play for a 64-62 win at Stony Brook. SHU owns a pair of double digit second half comebacks this season, erasing a 24-point hole against Yale in the season opener and a week ago trailing by as many as 14 to the Seawolves. Lehigh comes in off a 3-1 mark in the NIT Season Tip-Off with wins over Robert Morris, Fairfield and Penn. The Mountain Hawks play six games against the Northeast Conference this season and carry a seven-game winning streak against the league into Sunday.
Series Notes... This is the fifth meeting between Sacred Heart and Lehigh but first since the 2006-07 season.
- The Pioneers hold a 3-1 edge in the all-time series.
- SHU won the first meeting in 2003-04, 58-56, and the 2005-06 meeting, 66-55, both at home in the Pitt Center
- Lehigh posted a 72-63 win in the last meeting.
- Despite a 58-52 win during the 2004-05 season, the Mountain Hawks were forced to forfeit the win due to the academic ineligibility of player Joe Knight.
- SHU is 12-9 against the league after beating Lafayette and losing at Holy Cross last season.
- Sacred Heart will face three teams from the league this season, hosting Lehigh and Holy Cross and traveling to Lafayette.
- The Pioneers have faced Army (3-3), Holy Cross (4-4), Lafayette (2-1) and Lehigh (3-1).
The Head Coaches... Dave Bike (Sacred Heart '69) begins his 35th year as the head coach of Sacred Heart University where he owns a career record of 522-480. Only Jim Boheim of Syracuse has spent more time coaching at one institution. He led the Pioneers to eight NCAA Division II tournaments and his 1985-86 team won the national championship while finishing 30-4. Bike was named the national Coach of the Year by the NABC following the title game. Brett Reed (Eckerd '95) is in his sixth season as the Murray H. Goodman '48 Head Coach at Lehigh University. Reed is coming off a season where he led his team to a school record 27 wins and third Patriot League Championship. As the #15 seed in the NCAA Tournament last March, Reed led Lehigh to a 75-70 win over #2 Duke. During his time at Lehigh, Reed has 97 wins and has won two of the last three Patriot League crowns.
Up Next... The Pioneers are back out on the road and will head to Brown University on Thursday, November 29th for their second match-up against the Ivy League this year. SHU beat Yale, 85-82 in overtime in the season opener.