Nov. 18, 2009
FAIRFIELD, CT -
Setting The Scene: The Sacred Heart men’s basketball team starts a three-game road trip on Wednesday night at 4:00 in the Bronx when it takes on the Fordham Rams. The Pioneers are coming off an 81-70 win over Lafayette at home on Sunday.
TV/Radio/Internet: This game will be broadcast live on the WICC 600 AM and on the Internet from the Sacred Heart athletic website, SacredHeartPioneers.com. Jeff Holtz on play by play with Gene Gumbs, SHU Senior Associate AD for Communications, handling color commentary. The Pioneers will offer every men’s basketball game live this season on the Internet, with 16 games also being broadcast live over the air on the Pioneer Radio Network and flagship station WICC 600 AM.
Series vs. Fordham:This is just the second meeting between these two schools in men’s basketball. In fact, this will be just the third game ever between Sacred Heart and an Atlantic-10 school. The Rams squeaked out a 70-68 win in the first meeting in 2006.
SHU vs. the Atlantic 10: This is just the fourth game the Pioneers have played against an Atlantic 10 school and the A-10 has won the previous three. SHU is 0-1 against Duquesne, Fordham and Rhode Island. They will play Xavier for the first time ever on Saturday.
Scouting the Opponent: Fordham is off to an 0-2 start after dropping decisions to Maine (76-73) and Fairfield (63-55). The Rams have struggled from the floor in the first two games, shooting just 32 percent over and 22 percent (12-55) from three-point range. Sophomore Jio Fontan is off to a quick start scoring, averaging 19 points a game. He also leads the team in assists. Senior guard Brenton Butler is next at 12.5 points per contest. Junior Chris Gaston is the leading rebounder at nine per game. The Rams finished last season 3-25 overall and 1-15 in the Atlantic 10.
Hassan Honored: Senior Corey Hassan pulled in the first weekly award for the Pioneers this season when he was named NEC Player of the Week on November 16. Hassan averaged 25.5 points, seven rebounds, and three assists a game, while shooting 61 percent from the floor, 55 percent from three (6-11) and 88 percent from the line (7-8).
Welcome Back: After sitting out the 2008-09 season, senior Liam Potter returned to the Pioneers to open the 2009-10 campaign and the Lincolnshire, England native has gotten off to a quick start. He has averaged 9.5 points, eight rebounds, and three blocks in the first two games.
This Date in SHU Men’s Basketball History: On November 18, 1998, the Pioneers final season of Division II play, saw them defeat future Northeast Conference opponent Monmouth, 63-61, in West Long Branch. Senior John Randazzo poured in 25 points, including 7 of 13 from three-point range, to lead the Pioneers. Shawn Jones came off the bench to score 24 and freshman center Mindaugas Lydeka led all rebounders with 11. SHU would finish 11-16 that year and make the transition to Division I to start the following season.