Ishaq Pitt (pictured) and the Hawks will look to tame a hot Oregon State offensive outfit on Sunday

Dec. 15, 2013

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CORVALLIS, Ore. – The University of Maryland Eastern Shore men’s basketball team has made its way to the other side of the country as the Hawks are set to take on Oregon State at Gill Coliseum on Sunday, Dec. 15 at 6 p.m. (EST). The game is the first ever meeting between the two schools and is set to be broadcasted nationally on the PAC-12 Network.

Fans on the Delmarva Peninsula can tune into the game on channel 413 of the DISH Network. The game is set to be called by JB Long and Lamar Hurd. The matchup will also be streamed on the Hawk Radio Network by with Bret Lasky calling action for UMES.

UMES (2-4) enters the contest riding a two-game losing streak. The Hawks scored 59 points in each of its past two contests, despite shooting over 40-percent from the floor in the second half for both. The Hawks have rebounded well recently, where the team holds a +4 rebounding advantage over their past four games.

Freshman Hakeem Baxter (Philadelphia, Pa.) has been superb to begin his collegiate career and was named MEAC Rookie of the Week on Dec. 9 for the second time this winter. He is leading the team in points (17.2 ppg) and is shooting 49.2-percent from the field. Junior KyRee Jones (Indianapolis, Ind.) is averaging 15.0 ppg and stands among the top in the MEAC in three-pointers. On the glass, the Hawks are being paced by senior Francis Ezeiru (Enugu, Nigeria) with 6.5 rpg.

Oregon State (4-2) is averaging 83.5 ppg and is 1-1 against teams from Maryland this year. The team is getting it done offensively, thanks to Roberto Nelson and Devon Collier, who stand first and second, respectively, in the PAC-12 in points. Nelson is averaging 25.5 ppg, while Collier is bringing down 9.6 rpg. The Beavers feature nine players 6’7 or taller, compared to just two on UMES’ roster. 

Let's take a look at a few game notes for today's game:

LAST TIME OUT: UMES fell at UMBC, 64-59, on Monday, Dec 2. Down by one with 1:32 remaining, UMES forced a turnover, brought down a pair of offensive rebounds, and were fouled in the double-bonus. The Hawks would go to the free-throw line with a chance to take the lead, but it was not in the cards, as neither was made and UMBC held on for the win. Hakeem Baxter scored a career-high 28 points, while Troy Snyder had 12 boards

BAXTER BACKING IT UP: Freshman Hakeem Baxter has been nothing short of brilliant to open his collegiate career. He has been named MEAC Rookie of the Week twice (Nov. 25 & Dec. 9) and leads the Hawks in six statistical categories, including ppg (17.2) and free-throws (40-of-50). He has scored atleast 15 points in five of UMES’ six games

HEIGHT DOESN’T MATTER: Despite having a disadvantage in size for five of their first six games, the Hawks are holding their own on the glass. The men have an 82-73 advantage in offensive rebounds and opponents have just a -1.0 rebounding margin. Francis Ezeiru leads UMES with 39 rebounds (6.5 rpg). The team has just two players standing 6’6 or taller on its active roster

A STEALING BUNCH: The Hawks have seen 12-of-14 players on their roster record steals this season. The Hawks stand third in the MEAC with an average of 7.4 steals-per-game. KyRee Jones leads the team with six, while 10 others have atleast three steals. UMES is on pace to swipe 179 balls this year

THE IMPORTANCE OF THE THREE: In its four losses this year, UMES has shot just 19-for-74 from long range (26%). UMES has tallied a 39% clip (14-for-36) combined in its two wins. The Hawks are shooting 13% better from long-range in wins. Opponents are shooting over 35% from three-point territory against the Hawks.

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