Dec. 18, 2010
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Thundering Herd men's basketball team is set to return home on Sunday afternoon for its final home game before Christmas break, playing host to VMI at 4 p.m. inside the Cam Henderson Center.
Marshall is looking for its fifth-consecutive win after going on the road to defeat Savannah State, 56-47, Wednesday evening to improve to 7-2.
Tirrell Baines has led the way for the Herd in the last two games, scoring 17 points against James Madison before putting up a 20-point, 13-rebound performance to lead all players at Savannah State. His 13 boards tied his career best.
Dago Pena also had a career night against the Tigers, but not in the scoring department. The junior hauled in a personal best ten rebounds while falling just a point short of his first career double-double at Marshall.
VMI comes to Huntington with a 7-4 mark. The Keydets have not played since grabbing a 114-82 win over Longwood on December 11. They are the top scoring team in the country, averaging 95.5 points per game. They also do plenty of damage from three-point range, leading the nation with 11.2 threes per game.
Stan Okoye leads VMI with 19.6 PPG, 37th in the nation. Keith Gabriel is also one of the top 100 scorers in the country, averaging 17.4.
Marshall and VMI have met 47 times dating back to 1952. The Keydets, who are in the Big South Conference, have not faced the Herd since both were members of the Southern Conference in 1997. VMI joined the Big South in time for the 2003-04 season. Marshall won the last meeting, 79-77, in 1997 and has won four of the last six overall in the series.
Several promotions are set for Sunday, beginning with discounted tickets. Fans can purchase $6 general admission tickets, prior to Sunday only. Donations will be taken for Toys For Tots and fans who bring a new, unwrapped toy to the game will also be able to purchase $6 general admission tickets.
Legendary West Virginia high school basketball coach Lewis D'Antoni will be in attendance for a book signing prior to the game. D'Antoni, the father of Marshall Basketball legends Mike and Danny D'Antoni, will sign copies of his new book, "The Coach's Coach," beginning at 3 p.m. in the north concourse of the Henderson Center.
In addition, Marshall season ticket holders who show their ticket at the entrance to the Third Avenue Parking Garage or the Edwards Stadium West Lot will be allowed to park for free. This added benefit for season ticket holders is made possible for Sunday's game (and the Dec. 28 home game), due to the fact that the semester has ended and students will not be using those areas for parking over the holiday break.