Men's Basketball Preps for ETSU on Monday Night
MACON, Ga. – The Mercer men's basketball team will look to keep pace atop the current Atlantic Sun standings when it welcomes in East Tennessee St. to the University Center on Monday night.
The Bears (18-7, 10-2 A-Sun) are one of two teams to have each clinched a spot in the A-Sun Tournament by virtue of their 10-2 conference record. However, a pesky ETSU (12-10, 6-5 A-Sun) team comes to Macon in search of spoiling Mercer's current seven-game winning streak.
And unfortunately recent history shows that ETSU may have an advantage. The last team to beat the Bears was ETSU on Jan. 7, 2012 and the Buccaneers (12-10, 6-5 A-Sun) have a four-game winning streak over the Bears coming into Monday's game.
Tip-off for Monday's game is set for 7 p.m.
THE SERIES: Mercer trails 2-12 in the all-time series with ETSU. This includes one of the Bears two conference losses this season, a 76-61 loss in Johnson City back on January 7. The Buccaneers took both games last season as well. In fact, the Bears have not defeated the Buccaneers since Feb. 14, 2010 in a 82-77 win at Johnson City. With a win, it will be the Bears first home win against ETSU since Jan. 1, 2010.
In the one meeting between the two schools earlier in the year (Jan. 7, 2012) Justin Cecil led the team with 17 points in the 16-point loss.
OPPONENT AT-A-GLANCE: ETSU snapped a three-game conference losing streak by defeating Kennesaw St. 64-59 on Saturday afternoon. The Buccaneers, like the Bears, pride themselves on defense this season and are second in the A-Sun in scoring defense (66.0 ppg).
The Buccaneers were the last team to beat the Bears before Mercer began its season-long seven-game winning streak.
Senior guard Adam Sollazzo paces the ETSU offense and is third in the Atlantic Sun averaging 15.8 points per game and 348 total points scored. He is also third in the conference with 4.6 assists per game in leading the ETSU back court.
The game between Mercer and ETSU matches up two of the A-Sun's top defensive clubs, limiting their opponents to 63 and 66 points per game respectively.
ETSU'S LAST TIME OUT: The Buccaneers had a come-from-behind victory over Kennesaw St. on Saturday. Sollazzo scored 19 points in the victory. ETSU outscored KSU 40-29 in the second half to pull off the five point victory.
Isiah Brown(14 points) and Rashawn Rembert(11 points) each put up double-figures in the outing as well.