MIAMI, Fla. – A tough challenge awaits when the Colonels play at No. 18 Miami on Friday night. The game will air live on ESPN3, the worldwide leader’s web-based platform.
The live radio broadcast of the game is available in the Richmond area on WCYO 100.7 FM, and can be heard worldwide on EKUSports.com.
Miami is 9-1 this season and ranked No. 18 in the AP Poll and No. 19 in the USA Today Coaches Poll. EKU sits at 5-4 after suffering a home court loss to East Tennessee on Tuesday.
Even though they trailed by 18 points with 7:37 left, the Colonels never backed down and nearly fought their way back to a win over ETSU. However, the Buccaneers held on for a 63-60 victory.
Eastern had three chances to tie or take the lead in the final minute of action. Senior Eric Stutz led the Colonels with 13 points and eight rebounds. Corey Walden added 13 points and four steals. EKU had 17 assists on 22 made field goals.
Eastern Kentucky has committed 101 fewer turnovers and out-scored its opponents by 118 points off turnovers (224-106) this season. Against these seven teams – Kentucky, Kansas, Wisconsin, VCU, North Carolina State, West Virginia and Illinois – combined the last three seasons, Eastern has committed 24 fewer turnovers (77-101) and has out-scored these teams 100-85 off turnovers (+15).
The Colonels are still second in the nation in turnover margin (+11.2) and second in steals per game (12.3 spg).
The Hurricanes began the season with eight straight wins before falling at home to Green Bay. UM has victories at Florida and at home over Illinois.
Sheldon McClellan, a 6-foot-5 junior guard, leads the team in scoring at 16.2 points per game and has shot 58 percent from the field. The transfer from Texas is second on the team in rebounding (6.4 rpg) and assists (2.7 apg). Angel Rodriguez, a 5-foot-11 guard, is second on the team in scoring (14.2 ppg) and leads the squad in assists (4.5 apg). The transfer from Kansas State has gotten to the free throw line a team-best 46 times and is tied for the team lead with 24 three-pointers.
Sophomore Manu Lecomte, a 5-foot-11 guard, averages 12.1 points per game and is 24-for-47 from three-point range for 51 percent. Tonye Jekiri, a 7-foot, 244-pound junior center pulls down 9.7 rebounds per game for Miami while scoring 7.4 points per game.
As a team, the Hurricanes average 73.4 points and allow 58.8 per game. Miami is shooting 47 percent from the field and 42 percent from three-point range. UM is holding its opponents to 39 percent shooting overall and 29 percent from long distance.
EKU and Miami have both played Savannah State this season. The Colonels beat SSU 76-53 in Richmond. The Hurricanes picked up a 70-39 victory over Savannah State at home on Monday. Rodriguez had 17 points. McClellan finished with 15 points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals. Jekiri had eight points and nine rebounds.