Men's Basketball Opens NEC Schedule at Home Saturday

Dec. 2, 2009

FAIRFIELD, CT -

Setting The Scene: The Sacred Heart men's basketball team looks to win its second straight game as it opens the Northeast Conference schedule by hosting the Monmouth Hawks on Saturday at 1:00. The Pioneers are coming off a 60-55 win over Columbia on Monday.

Series: This is the 19th career meeting between these two schools and the series is even at 9-9. However, the Pioneers have won five of the last six meetings and seven of the last ten.

Last Ten Meetings: (*road game)

2/21/09 SHU 83 Monmouth 61
1/3/09 Monmouth 70 SHU 56*
2/7/08 SHU 74 Monmouth 62
12/2/07 SHU 80 Monmouth 53*
2/23/07 SHU 82 Monmouth 75*
1/11/07 SHU 74 Monmouth 57
12/18/05 Monmouth 73 SHU 64*
1/31/05 SHU 44 Monmouth 41
12/30/04 Monmouth 67 SHU 49*
2/16/04 SHU 70 Monmouth 63

Scouting the Opponent: Monmouth is off to a 2-5 start but has played a very challenging schedule. The Hawks have lost their last two games to Hampton (59-56) and Pepperdine (82-73). The offense has five players averaging in double figures, led by sophomore Travis Taylor at 15 points per game. Taylor is also the leading rebounder at eight per game. Will Campbell has missed the last three games but was averaging 12.3 points per game prior to that. Whitney Coleman, who missed last season with an injury, has come back strong and is scoring 11 points per game. The Hawks are shooting 44 percent from the field, 31 percent from long range, and 63 percent from the line.

This Date in SHU Men's Basketball History: On December 5, 1978, in the first season for head coach Dave Bike with the Pioneers, Sacred Heart defeated Quinnipiac 76-73 at home. Junior guard Greg Pritchett led SHU with 19 points and five assists. Senior forward Cedric Cannon finished with 16 points and nine rebounds, shooting 10-12 from the free throw line. Willie Boyd also finished in double figures with 12 points. The Pioneers would win their first three games that season, on the way to a 19-9 record and an ECAC Championship at the end of the year, with wins over Williams and Bryant.

Upcoming Games: The Pioneers will hit the road for a pair of contests at Hartford (Dec. 11) and Fairfield (Dec. 13).

Gunslingers: The Pioneers set a school record for three-pointers made in a season in 2008-09, draining 241 of them. They canned them at a .394 clip, which is also the school record and led the Northeast Conference. Long Island University was on the receiving end of the most Pioneer bullets, when they drained 16 of them against the Blackbirds on February 7. The team is on a pace to break that record, averaging nine treys per game through the first six contests.

Home Cooking: The Pioneers have been very good at home over the last four+ seasons, going 40-15 over that span. 2006-07 was the best Division I season at home for the program, finishing the year 11-2 enroute to its first trip to the NEC title game.

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