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George Mason (7-15) at Duquesne (10-11)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 8, 2 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: A.J. Palumbo Center (4,406) -- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Television: None. Home Record: GMU 5-5, Duquesne 6-5. Away Record: GMU 1-7, Duquesne 4-5. Neutral Record: GMU 1-3, Duquesne 0-1. Conference Record: GMU 0-8, Duquesne 2-6. Series Record: George Mason leads, 4-2.

GAME NOTES: The George Mason Patriots begin a two-game road trip as they invade the A.J. Palumbo Center for an Atlantic 10 Conference tilt against the Duquesne Dukes.

The Patriots' inaugural tour of the A-10 has been fruitless through their first eight games. Coach Paul Hewitt's team was completely outplayed on Wednesday as it was dispatched, 84-67, at home by Dayton. George Mason's current nine-game losing streak has dropped it to a 7-15 overall record, which includes a 1-7 mark in true road games. The Patriots' lack of success has come due to very poor defensive play as their allowed average of 79.5 ppg in league games is the highest in the A-10.

Duquesne enters Saturday's action on a two-game skid after suffering a 71-57 setback at George Washington. Coach Jim Ferry's squad is now one-game below the .500 mark on the campaign and is just one spot in front of the Patriots in the A-10 standings. The Dukes have been nearly as generous as the visitors on the defensive end so far, allowing 77.4 ppg in conference games.

This will be the first matchup between these programs since the Dukes downed George Mason in Fairfax on Dec. 21, 2011. The Patriots hold a 4-2 lead in the all-time series.

George Mason could not figure out a way to contain the Flyers in its last outing. Dayton connected on 54.9 percent of its shots from the floor and converted 22 of its 30 free-throw attempts to power past the Patriots, who made only 36.3 percent of their 2-point field goal tries. Senior guard Sherrod Wright had a solid showing for GMU, finishing with 18 points on 5-of-9 efficiency from the floor and Bryon Allen chipped in 16 points from the other guard slot. Allen is pacing the team and ranks 11th in the A-10 in scoring with 15.3 ppg. Wright is a close second at 13.9 ppg despite his 28.1 percent efficiency from beyond the arc. Although just a rookie, Jalen Jenkins is GMU's most reliable forward. The 6-foot-7 freshman forward had grabbed an average of 9.5 rpg over an eight-game span before being finishing with just one on Wednesday.

Senior forward Ovie Soko registered a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Dukes as they experienced their fifth loss in seven games in the nation's capital. Junior forward Dominique McKoy chipped in 14 points and eight boards, while sophomore guard Micah Mason scored 11 points. Duquesne allowed the Colonials to shoot 46.4 percent from the floor and the damage could have been much worse considering GW went just 13-of-25 at the free-throw line. The Dukes made just 33.9 percent of their field-goal attempts and committed 15 turnovers. Soko, who committed six of the miscues versus GW, leads the Dukes with averages of 18.1 ppg and 7.7 rpg. McKoy also plays a vital role with 10.2 ppg and 7.5 rpg.

GMU's lengthy search for a win in A-10 play could come to an end in the Steel City if its backcourt continues to thrive. Duquesne will have an edge on the interior, but it will have trouble keeping up with the Patriots' senior backcourt tandem. GMU took the nationally ranked Saint Louis Billikens to overtime on the road last week, so the Dukes should expect to have their work cut out for them.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: George Mason 83, Duquesne 78

02/08 10:24:50 ET

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