Green Bay Concludes Homestand on Saturday Afternoon
GREEN BAY, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - Green Bay looks to end its four-game homestand in winning fashion and improve its home winning streak to seven games on Saturday when it welcomes Cleveland State to the Resch Center on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. for the Horizon League Game of the Week. The Phoenix has won the first three games of the homestand using stifling defense in wins over Loyola, UIC and Youngstown State.
Freshmen Jordan Fouse (Racine, Wis.) and Carrington Love (Milwaukee, Wis.) sparked the 67-58 victory on Thursday against YSU. Fouse had 12 points, nine rebounds, three steals and two blocked shots while Love came off the bench to tie a career high with 11 points.
Cleveland State comes to Green Bay after a 69-57 loss at the hands of Milwaukee on Thursday night. The Vikings were led in scoring by freshman Bryn Forbes, who scored 16 points in the loss.
JOIN THE PHOENIX: Saturday's game is a Festival Foods Family Game with Free Throws with the Phoenix set to take place after the contest. The first 1,000 youth fans in attendance will receive a free jersey backpack compliments of S&L Motors. Youth tickets start at just $7 while adult tickets are sold for as low as $8.
FOLLOW THE PHOENIX: For fans unable to make it to the Resch Center on Saturday afternoon, the contest will be live on Time Warner Cable Sports32, ESPN3.com and the Horizon League Network. Jim Barbar will be the play-by-play announcer for the broadcast while David Kaplan will serve as the color analyst.
The game will also be carried live by WDUZ The Fan 107.5 FM and online at thefan1075.com. The play-by-play voice of the Phoenix Matt Menzl will be on the call alongside Cordero Barkley. Live stats will be available on GreenBayPhoenix.com. You can also stay up-to-date by following @GBPhoenixMBB and @GBGavin on Twitter.
1. INSIDE THE SERIES: Green Bay leads the all-time series with the Vikings 37-27, including a 22-9 record at home. The two teams split a season ago, with the Phoenix winning 71-67 at the Resch Center. Kam Cerroni (Sussex, Wis.) made 10-of-16 three-pointers in the two meetings against CSU last season, and he made 5-of-8 from long range to lead the Phoenix with 17 points in the win in Green Bay.
2. DEFENDING THE HOME COURT: Green Bay has won six-straight games at the Resch Center on the strength of its defense. The Phoenix has not allowed more than 58 points and has held four opponents in the 40s during the stretch. In the last six games at the Resch Center, Green Bay foes are shooting just 33.2 percent and averaging 49.2 points per game. Youngstown State shot just 30.5 percent from the field.
3. RESERVE ROLES: Despite playing just three players off the bench, Green Bay got 31 points from its bench on Thursday night. Love made all three of his shots and 5-of-7 free throws en route to 11 points. Also off the pine, senior Brennan Cougill (Sioux City, Iowa) and Cerroni added 11 and nine points, respectively. The 31 points scored off the bench was the second most by the Phoenix this season and most in a Horizon League game.
• LAST SEASON'S MEETINGS: Green Bay and Cleveland State split the season series in 2011-12, with both teams winning on their respective home courts. The Vikings took the first game 78-68 before the Phoenix posted a 71-67 win at the Resch Center on Feb. 21. Cerroni made 10-of-16 three-pointers and did not attempt a two-point shot against the Vikings while averaging a team-best 16 points per game. CSU senior Tim Kamczyc made 10-of-12 shots from the field and averaged 13 points per game.
• HOME SWEET HOME: Green Bay is 8-1 at home this season after six consecutive victories. In the past three seasons under head coach Brian Wardle, the Phoenix is 30-7 at the Resch Center, including a 20-3 mark since the start of the 2011-12 season. Aside from its defense, Green Bay is shooting 44.7 percent at home and outrebounding opponents by four boards per game. Led by Keifer Sykes (55-70), Green Bay has made 57 more free throws than its opponents have attempted. Sykes is averaging 17.1 points per game at home.
• FREE AND EASY: Green Bay is second in the Horizon League, and its 74.9 percent from the line ranks 25th nationally. The Phoenix is 296-395 on the season and, among teams ranked in the top-25 nationally in free-throw percentage, Green Bay has made the third-most free throws. On Thursday, Green Bay was just 5-of-9 and had missed its first three second-half free throws before connecting on 19-of-21 the rest of the game.
• RECORD STREAK: With a miss against UIC, Cerroni saw his school-record free throw streak of 40 consecutive free throws come to an end. Cerroni broke the record of 38 previously held by Matt Rohde (2002-03) with a pair of free throws at Detroit on Jan. 5, and his streak dated back to Feb. 4, 2012. The junior made all four of his free throws against Youngstown State and is now 32-of-33 at the charity stripe this season (97 percent).
• KAM CATCHING FIRE: Cerroni led the Horizon League in three-point percentage as a sophomore in 2011-12 but struggled early this season from long range. However, Cerroni is starting to catch fire. He drained all three of his attempts from beyond the arc against Loyola, and since Dec. 12 at Wisconsin, Cerroni is shooting 45.2 percent (14-31) from three-point range.
• HANDLE THE ROCK: Since a forgettable opener in which he committed eight turnovers without an assist, Sykes has been terrific handling the ball. With an assist-to-turnover ratio better than 2-to-1, Sykes has 73 assists compared to just 34 turnovers in the past 17 games. In addition to ranking fourth in the conference in points (15.3), he is tied for sixth in assists (4.1) and seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.7).
Single-game tickets are on sale with the Green Bay Athletics Ticket Office. For more information and to order tickets, please call 920.465.2625, visit the athletics department offices in the Kress Events Center or access GreenBayPhoenix.com/tickets.
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