Marshall and Tulane Set for Sunday Matinee
Men's basketball looks to end trip with a win
Feb. 8, 2014
Tulsa, Okla. (BOK Center)
Herd Ends Season with 66-64 Loss
No. 8 seed Tulane banked in a three-pointer from the top of the key with 6.9 seconds left to spoil a game that No. 9 seed Marshall controlled, up 13 midway through the second half, in a season ending 66-64 loss in the first round of the Conference USA Championships at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla.
NEW ORLEANS, La. – In a rematch of a first-round matchup from the 2013 Conference USA Tournament, the Marshall men’s basketball team will look to get even against Tulane on Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. in Devlin Fieldhouse.
HAVE YOU HERD?
As has been the story in many of its losses this season, the Marshall men’s basketball team came up just to Conference USA leader Southern Mississippi, 60-57, on Friday night at Reed Green Coliseum.
With the clock winding down in the first half, Canty attempted a long-range three and sank it as the buzzer sounded to end the first half. The long-range bucket put the Herd up 35-24 at the break.
Out of a timeout with 6.3 seconds remaining, Neil Watson knocked down a three from the top of the key to put his Golden Eagles out front, 58-57, as 2.0 seconds remained. The Herd had one last chance at the win and an errant pass attempt from Smith to Taylor handed the ball back to the home team. After making a pair of free throws, time ran out and Southern Miss secured a 60-57 victory.
SHAKING IT UP
For the seventh time in as many games, coach Tom Herrion fielded a different starting five. This time the Marshall starters were Shawn Smith (Sacramento, Calif.), Kareem Canty (Harlem, N.Y.), Chris Thomas (Denver), Cheikh Sane (Dakar, Senegal) and Ryan Taylor (Indianapolis).
The Herd is currently 1-11 away from home this season and is 3-25 away from Huntington since the start of the 2012-13 season.
Over the past 10 weeks, Marshall has snagged five C-USA Freshman of the Week honors between a pair of Herd first years. Taylor is the most recent as his 17.5 ppg and 9.5 rpg showing a week ago earned him the award, Jan. 27. After having earned it on Jan. 6 as well, at the time he had now won the award in two of the last four weeks.
Canty is responsible for three of the awards, with them all having come in consecutive weeks (Dec. 2, 9 and 16). Only one other player in the league has received the honor on three occasions this season, Jonathan Stark of Tulane.
POINTS OF EMPHASIS
Marshall has yet to win a game this season in which it failed to reach the 70-point plateau. The Herd is 3-13 when scoring 79 or less points and 5-3 when scoring above 80. Having an 8-7 record when keeping opponents below 79 points of offense, Marshall is 0-9 when allowing the opposition to score more than 80 points.
ON THE LINE
Free throws have been a point of emphasis for the Herd this season as Marshall is 6-2 when converting more attempts from the charity stripe than opponents and 2-13 when making fewer free throws than the opposition. The Herd is shooting 62.2 percent from the line this season (397-of-638). Marshall’s 241 missed free throw attempts rank first in NCAA Division I men’s basketball.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
With numerous scoring threats in the Marshall lineup, four members of the Herd are averaging double figures in scoring, three of which have become a mainstay in the Herd’s starting lineup: Canty with 16.0, Taylor with 14.1 and Thomas with 11.7. Smith is knocking on the double-digit doorstep as he is averaging 8.3 points in his emerging sixth-man role.
The Herd has received scoring help from more than its top four scorers as Marshall has had three or more of its own score in double figures in 18 of 24 games this season. Unfortunately, it has not always been enough as the Herd is 6-12 this season when three or more of its own score in double figures and 2-4 when two or less reach 10 points.
A HELPING HAND
The benefit of having a true point guard has helped the Herd greatly this year and Canty has been the primary reason for that. An average of 6.3 assists per game has the freshman ranking 11th in the country, while he is the second-best assist man in C-USA. Canty has recorded four double-doubles on the season, all coming from a combination of points and assists.
Canty has led or tied for the lead in assists for the Herd in 23 of the season’s 24 games.
SCOUTING THE GREEN WAVE
After having dropped its last two C-USA games, Tulsa rebounded on Friday night to defeat Charlotte at home, 64-63. The win helped the Green Wave ensure that its overall record would avoid dropping below .500 after the weekend of games.
Three of Tulane’s own make up a majority of the scoring as the trio averages 17.0, 14.9 and 14.4 points per game, each. Sophomore guard Louis Dabney is responsible for 17.0 ppg and 4.9 rebounds per game.
Marshall holds a slim 8-7 edge in the all-time series between the two sides, with the Green Wave having won the last two meetings. The Herd is 4-3 against Tulane in New Orleans. The teams last met in Tulsa, Okla. in the first round of the 2013 C-USA tournament, a game that Tulane won 66-64.
Marshall will have six days off between contests before taking on C-USA newcomer Charlotte on the road, Saturday (Feb. 15) at 7 p.m.