Men’s Basketball Meets UNF Monday
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – After losing for the first time in over a month on Saturday at Jacksonville, the Mercer men's basketball team looks to get back on track in a road test at North Florida Monday night. Tip-off between the Bears and Ospreys is scheduled for 7 p.m. at UNF Arena.
Despite losing on Saturday night, the Bears still control their own destiny in regards to conference tournament seeding. If the Bears can win their final three regular season games, the team will earn at least a share of the A-Sun regular season championship and be guaranteed the top seed in the league playoff.
Also within grasp for the Bears is a program-record for win total in a season. The 2002-03 edition of the Bears set the mark with a 23-6 overall record. The Bears currently own a 20-8 (12-3 A-Sun) record, meaning the school record for single-season wins will require at least one postseason victory.
SCOUTING THE OPPONENT
North Florida is coming off an 81-77 victory over Kennesaw State on Saturday evening. The Ospreys needed double overtime to get by the Owls, but clinched their third-straight trip to the Atlantic Sun championship in the process.
UNF currently sports a 14-15 (8-8 A-Sun) record and is one of four A-Sun teams with a double digit win total at home. The Ospreys are 10-3 at UNF Arena this season and are riding a three-game winning streak at the venue.
The Ospreys have a balanced scoring attack with four players averaging more than 10 points a game. Parker Smith tops the team at 13.3 points per game while Travis Wallace boasts 11.4 points per game off the bench. Jerron Granberry is third-best at 10.8 points per game.
Wallace is coming off his best collegiate game as he tallied a career-high 29 points against Kennesaw State. The Marietta, Ga. native booked his points on 13-of-15 shooting and also grabbed 11 rebounds in the win.
Monday's game is the final home contest of the season for UNF and the Ospreys will honor seniors Matt Sauey and Jimmy Williams before the tip-off.
Mercer has 11 wins in 13 all-time meetings with North Florida. Last year, the teams split a pair of meetings with each squad capturing a victory on the road. Monday night's game is the second matchup between the teams this season after the Bears bested the Ospreys 69-58 in Macon on January 21.
On the year, Mercer is 4-4 in afternoon games and 16-4 in night games. The Bears are also 6-1 on Mondays this season.
The Bears allow only 0.93 points per possession, tied for 51st best among Division I programs.