The UMBC men's basketball squad will try to remain perfect at home when they face the Messiah Falcons at the RAC Arena on Saturday, Dec. 3. Tip-off time at the RAC Arena is slated for 1:00 p.m. Gary Stein and Paul Mittermeier have the call on www.umbcretrievers.tv.
Live stats will be available via www.umbcretrievers.com and fans can also follow via the men's basketball program's Twitter feed (UMBC_MBB). Access of live stats and video is also available via UMBC Front Row, UMBC Athletics' mobile website.
RETRIEVERS' UPDATE: UMBC scored 52 first half points, built a 16-point second half lead, and held off host Duquesne, 81-72, at the A.J. Palumbo Center on Nov. 30. The Retrievers improved to 5-1 on the campaign, and posted its first victory over Duquesne (3-5) in five meetings.
The victory was the Retrievers' first over an Atlantic 10 squad since the 2007-08 campaign. The 5-1 record ties UMBC's best-ever at the Division I level, matching the 2000-01 and 2007-08 squads.
Four Retrievers scored in double figures, paced by sophomore wing Joe Sherburne and junior guard Jairus Lyles, who tallied 16 points each. Senior forward Will Darley added 13 points and junior guard Rodney Elliott added 11.
UMBC scored 40 points in a span of 11:35 in the latter stage of the first half
Lyles leads the squad and is second in America East and, averaging 20.8 points per game. He is also tenth in field goal percentage at 51.1, and tied for fourth with 1.7 steals per contest.
Three other Retrievers are averaging in double figures – senior forward Will Darley (13.2 ppg), sophomore wing Joe Sherburne (11.3 ppg), and junior guard K.J. Maura (11.2. ppg). UMBC is averaging an America East-high 83.2 points per game and is shooting at a league-best 48.8 percent clip from the floor in the early stages of the campaign.
Through games of Nov. 30, UMBC was 41st in the nation in scoring average at 83.2 points per game.
UMBC's 499 points scored through six games in the most recorded in school history.
The Retrievers lead America East in scoring average (83.6), scoring margin (+10.3), field goal percentage (48.8) treys made per game (9.8) and 3-pt. percentage (38.8), steals per game (7.3), turnover margin (+3.0) and assist/turnover ratio (+1.2).
UMBC recorded five wins in November, the most wins in a month since winning seven in February of 2008 and the most wins in November since winning the same number in November of 2007.
FALCONS UPDATE: Messiah opened with the season with a pair of wins, but has dropped three straight entering play against the Retrievers. Like Hood College, the Falcons are members of the Mid-Atlantic (NCAA Division III) Conference (Commonwealth Conference). Messiah built a 45-33 halftime lead in the conference opener at home versus Lycoming on Wednesday, but the visitors hit 18-of-22 shots in the second half to triumph, 87-75.
Messiah reserve sophomore wing Logan Long hit 5-of-6 shots from behind the arc and tied senior forward Josh Clippenger for team scoring honors with 15 points. Clippenger leads the Falcons with 14.6 points per game to date, while Long is registering 10.4 per outing.
Messiah has only permitted foes to convert 25 treys (5.0 per game) this season.
THE SERIES: Today's game will be the first between the two schools.
WHO'S UP NEXT: UMBC plays a pair of games on the road next week, starting with a Wed., December 7 contest at Mount St. Mary's .