Teams: American (2-4) vs. Howard (2-7)
Date and Location: Wed., Dec. 4, 2013, 7:30 p.m. – Bender Arena, Washington, D.C.
Series: 19th meeting; American leads 14-4
Last Meeting: L, 55-50 – Washington, D.C., Burr Gym (Dec. 4, 2012)
Video: Patriot League Network – Dain Laing (play-by-play), Jeremy Huber (analyst)
After four-straight road games, the American University men's basketball team returns to the friendly confines of Bender Arena, taking on cross-town foe Howard on Wednesday, December 4, at 7:30 p.m.
Fans not in the D.C.-metro area can tune in to the Patriot League Network to view the internet broadcast free of charge with Dan Laing and Jeremy Huber calling the action.
It will be the 19th ever meeting between American (2-4) and Howard (2-7) with the Eagles holding a 14-4 all-time series advantage. The two teams first met on December 14, 1974 with AU securing a 71-56 win. They have played every year with alternating home sites since the 2000-01 season.
American closed out a grueling road stretch this past Saturday at Saint Francis (Pa.). The Red Flash were playing in its first home game this season, but AU used a season-best performance, scoring 75 points on its way to a 32-point victory over SFU.
It was American's first 30-point victory in nearly four years, the last coming in a 79-49 win at Colgate on January 17, 2009.
American shot over 50-percent from the field in the game, including a 68.2 percent (15-of-22) clip in the second half. AU also knocked down 8-of-17 shots from beyond the arc and 11-of-13 attempts from the charity stripe.
AU's defense has been some of the best in the county so far this season. The Eagles are 16th in the nation in scoring defense (59.8 ppg) and rank 10th in 3-point field goal defense (24.0%). American is 43rd in field goal percentage defense (38.9%).
After two home games to open the season against non-Division I opponents, the Bison were on the road for six-straight games, falling in each contest. Most recently, Howard returned to Burr Gymnasium on Nov. 30, playing William & Mary into overtime, but fell 84-79, despite a career-high 40 points from junior Prince Okoroh.
Despite the 40-point outburst, Okoroh is second on the team with 14.4 ppg, but leads the Bison with 5.1 rpg. Freshman guard James Daniel averages 21.6 ppg and leads Howard with 2.9 apg. Daniel has done much of his damage from beyond the arc, hitting 32-of-76 3-pointers.
Head coach Kevin Nickelberry, a Washington, D.C., native, is in his fourth season at the helm of the Bison. Last season, Howard went 9-22, but boasted an 8-9 mark in MEAC play.
MORE ON THE EAGLES
Sophomore guard Jesse Reed led way for AU at Saint Francis, missing a career-high by one point, with 20. Reed went 9-of-14 from the field with six rebounds and three steals; each mark setting or tying a career best.
Junior John Schoof broke out of a shooting slump in a big way, draining four from distance for a season-high 18 points against the Red Flash. Schoof hit 5-of-8 from the field including 4-of-6 from beyond the arc and 4-of-4 from the free throw line.
Senior big man Tony Wroblicky made it three Eagles in double figures, scoring 12 on 5-of-7 shooting. Wroblicky now has hit double digit in three of his last four games and swatted eight shots in that time.
Junior point guard Darius Gardner also set a career high with American, dishing out eight assists in the blowout victory.
Junior forward Kyle Kager made his presence felt in the stat sheet with a game-high seven rebounds and added seven points with a 3-pointer.
Sophomore forward Marko Vasic continues to play well off the bench, adding nine points on 3-of-5 shooting with a 3-pointer and two rebounds.
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AU continues its two-game homestand at Bender Arena this Saturday, December 7 at 2 p.m., against Brown. Click here to get your tickets today.
This week, now through tip-off prior to Saturday's home game against Brown, is AU fans' final opportunity to take advantage of the "Bender Weekender" Ticket Mini-Plan. For just $79 you get a sideline chairback ticket to five great Saturday home games: Dec. 7 vs. Brown, Jan. 18 vs. Lafayette, Feb. 8 vs. Colgate, Feb. 22 vs. Army, and March 1 vs. Bucknell.
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