Men's Basketball Faces Austin Peay on BracketBusters Saturday
Georgia Southern (20-8, 13-5) won its sixth straight game Wednesday and clinched a 20-win season for the third time in the last five years. A win over the Governors would give GSU two seven-game winning streaks in the same season for the first time since 1991-92.
The Eagles scored a season-high 98 points against The Citadel Wednesday and shot 57.6% from the field, 50.0% from 3-point land and a season-high 93.3% from the foul line.
“It was good to see us continue to make shots,” said head coach Jeff Price. “We’ve been shooting the ball pretty good. It was a game where we didn’t need our defense to carry us but I thought it was exceptional also. But we’re going to have to be on our offensive best to have a chance.”
Austin Peay (18-10, 14-4), members of the Ohio Valley Conference, gives the Eagles their toughest road test since Jan. 31 at Chattanooga. The Governors currently lead the OVC by two games and had their five-game winning streak ended their last time out at Tennessee State.
“They’re a really, really solid (but) not real deep team, but tough, physical, play extremely hard, have two perimeter players that can really shoot it and two inside players that are very active,” said Price. “They’re not big size-wise - they’re playing with 6-6 post players - but they’re really quick inside and they get after you defensively.”
APSU is especially tough in Clarksville, posting an 11-1 record at the Dunn Center.
“They’re really good at home. They’ve got a lot of tradition, it’s senior night, they’ll probably have over 5,000 people there (so) it’s going to be a tough atmosphere.”
While Austin Peay ranks last in the OVC in field goal percentage defense and 10th in 3-point defense, they are first in the league and fifth in the nation as a team in steals with 10.1 per game and senior guard Derek Wright is eighth in the nation at 2.7 per outing. APSU has a plus-4.57 turnover margin on the season.
The Eagles, who are 20th in Division I in steals, have committed an average of 7.7 turnovers in their past three games and since Jan. 26 have a plus-5.1 turnover margin.
“We’ve been good at (not turning the ball over) as of late,” Price said. “They’re a high-pressure team that definitely forces some turnovers. Anytime you give the ball away it’s one less time you get a chance to score points and get a shot up. We won’t make a big issue of it but we’ve been very good at and hopefully it will remain that way.”
Practically carrying the team on his back of late is senior Louis Graham who notched his third consecutive 20-point game Wednesday and is averaging 25.7 points in his last three outings.
“He’s not going to be oversized,” said Price. “He’s going to be playing against people his size. We’ll have to wait and see whether or not they double-team him, but I think he’ll have a chance to have a good offensive game if we continue to do what we’ve been doing.”
- Category: Men's Basketball
- Published on Friday, 22 February 2008 00:24