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Fairfield (5-22) at Niagara (6-21)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Thursday, February 20, 7 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Gallagher Center (2,100) -- Niagara, New York. Television: None. Home Record: Fairfield 4-9, Niagara 4-7. Away Record: Fairfield 1-11, Niagara 1-12. Neutral Record: Fairfield 0-2, Niagara 1-2. Conference Record: Fairfield 2-14, Niagara 3-13. Series Record: Niagara leads, 38-26.

GAME NOTES: Two teams at the bottom of the conference standings do battle, as the Fairfield Stags have made the trek to the Empire State to take on the Niagara Purple Eagles in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference matchup at the Gallagher Center on Thursday night.

Fairfield has lost three straight, including a 71-62 setback versus Rider last Saturday. The Stags have now lost eight of their last nine, and are ensconced in last place in the MAAC.

Only Fairfield has a worse record in conference play than Niagara, who has lost six straight and also eight of its last nine. Last time out, the Purple Eagles were taken out by Manhattan on the road, 90-72.

Niagara leads the all-time series, 38-26 and has won three straight in the series after a six-game losing streak to the Stags. The Purple Eagles won at Fairfield on Jan. 16, 67-63. Ramone Snowden scored a game-high 18 points, including the go-ahead basket with 26 seconds left to get the win.

Maurice Barrow led Fairfield in the loss to Rider with 22 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the floor. Marcus Gilbert posted 20 points and eight rebounds, while Amadou Sidibe pulled down a game-high nine boards and K.J. Rose handed out five assists as the Stags. Leading 31-28 at the break, the Stags shot just 37 percent from the floor in the second half and allowed Rider to knock down its shots at a 53.6 percent clip. The Stags were hurt by their own mistakes, as the Broncs tallied 27 points off of Fairfield's 15 turnovers.

No team in the MAAC is performing worse on offense than Fairfield. The Stags are last in the league in both scoring (62.1 ppg) and field goal percentage (.394), as well as eighth in assists (11.0 apg). Gilbert (13.6 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and Barrow (13.6 ppg, 5.0 rpg) are the top scorers on the roster. Rose (7.9 ppg, 3.6 apg) is the team's leader in assists. They are holding foes to just 69.7 ppg, which is the second-best yield in the conference.

In the loss to Manhattan, the Purple Eagles were paced by Marcus Ware and his 19 points, while Antoine Mason and Tahjere McCall responded with 17 and 16 points, respectively. Manhattan limited the Niagara to just eight field goals through the first 20 minutes of play, en route to a 41-30 lead at the break. In the second half, Niagara showed signs of life with an impressive 61.9 percent showing from the field, but at the same time the Jaspers converted 58.6 percent in order to pull even further ahead and secure the lopsided home win.

Mason continues to be one of the top scorers in the nation with his 25.6 ppg, with nearly one-third of his total points coming at the free-throw line where he has knocked down 214-of-289 (.740). Despite no other player averaging in double figures, as a team, the Purple Eagles are scoring a respectable 76.1 ppg, but also giving up an unsightly 82.8 ppg on 49 percent shooting, both league-worsts, which makes it difficult to come out on the winning end from one game to the next.

As can be expected by the teams fighting to stay out of the MAAC cellar, both give up a ton of points. The Purple Eagles have been able to score though, in their attempt to make up for their defensive struggles, so expect the home team to pull out the victory.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Niagara 74, Fairfield 66

02/20 10:17:47 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
 
Final
TOWSN 31
NCCU 20
 
Final
NCSU 42
PRES 0
 
Final
KAN 2
DET 3
Final
CHC 8
LOS 7
Final
OAK 0
PHI 3
Final
NYY 3
TOR 6
Final
COL 5
ARI 1
Final
BAL 7
BOS 2
9th
PIT 0
MIL 0
 
Final
TAM 3
CWS 1
 
7th
MIN 2
CLE 7
 
Final
ATL 2
NYM 4
 
Final
HOU 10
SEA 1
Final
MIA 2
WAS 3
 
Final
STL 8
CIN 4
 
6th
SDP 3
SFG 0
 
5th
ANA 3
TEX 0
 
Final
WISC 68
BGU 17
Final
MSU 73
EMICH 14
Final
VT 24
GT 27
Final
PITT 20
IOWA 24
Final
RICE 42
ODU 45
Final
UGA 66
TROY 0
Final
SYR 20
MD 34
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
COL 21
HAW 12
Final
AKR 17
MARS 48
Final
WAKE 24
ARMY 21
Final
KU 24
CMICH 10
Final
ALA 42
UF 21
Final
FIU 3
LOU 34
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
 
Final
NAVY 24
RUTG 31
Final
SMU 6
TEXAM 58
Final
MICH 10
UTAH 26
Final
BYU 41
UVA 33
Final
WYO 20
FATL 19
Final
MIZZ 27
IND 31
Final
PSU 48
UMASS 7
Final
MINN 24
SJST 7
Final
ILL 42
TXST 35
 
Final
WASH 45
GASTATE 14
4th
SMISS 21
APPST 14
 
2nd
TOL 20
BST 3
 
Final
OHIO 36
IDAHO 24
 
4th
CIN 31
UMO 24
 
Final
MEM 36
MTST 17
 
4th
LSU 16
MSST 34
 
Final
ARK 52
NILL 14
 
4th
ARKST 14
UTST 14
 
4th
SALABAMA 6
GASO 28
 
3rd
WVU 27
OKLA 31
 
4th
VANDY 24
SCAR 27
 
3rd
NEB 31
MIAMI 21
 
3rd
NMST 21
NMU 24
 
3rd
HOU 27
UNLV 7
 
3rd
FSU 10
CLEM 10
 
1st
ARZ 0
CAL 14
 
10:30pm Tonight
BSU
LALAF
10:30pm Tonight
WASU
OREG
10:30pm Tonight
ORST
SDST
Final
TOWSN 31
NCCU 20
 
Final
NCSU 42
PRES 0