Men's basketball Hosts Lobos Saturday Afternoon
Feb. 2, 2018
SPARTANS HOST LOBOS SATURDAY AFTERNOON
The San José State men's basketball team returns to The Event Center Saturday for a 3:00 p.m. tipoff against the New Mexico Lobos. Tickets are available now via the Spartan Ticket Office which can be reached at 408-924-7589. The game will be broadcast live on AT&T SportsNet and can also be heard on KLIV 1590 AM radio with Justin Allegri's play-by-play call.
San José State (3-18, 0-10 MW) vs. New Mexico (11-12, 6-4 MW)
Saturday, February 3, 2018, 3:00 p.m. (PT)
The Event Center (5,000)
San Jose, Calif.
TV: AT&T SportsNet
Radio: KLIV 1590 AM & KSJS 90.5 FM
Series: New Mexico leads, 12-1
Last Meeting: UNM 80 SJSU 47 - Jan. 5, 2018 - Dreamstyle Arena/The Pit
FIRST GAME BETWEEN SJSU AND UNM
The first meeting with the Lobos this season on Jan. 5 is one that the Spartans would like to forget. They fell behind early and could never climb back, suffering an 80-47 loss in Albuquerque. While that was less than a month ago the Spartans are a much different team - and statistically better - than they were that night. One thing remains the same though as SJSU is still in search of its first conference win. The Lobos have gone 4-2 since the last meeting with the Spartans, but come in after an 89-80 loss Wednesday night at Utah State.
SPARTAN OFFENSE GAINING STEAM
San José State's offense has picked it up quite a bit over the last three games. The team is shooting 49.7 percent from the field and averaging 74.7 points per game during that stretch compared to overall marks of 43.7 percent and 65.9 points per game. Three players are averaging double-figure scoring, led by Ryan Welage at 26.7 points per game. Keith Fisher III has finished with 10 or more points in five of the last six games and is averaging 13.7 points over the last three contests. Jaycee Hillsman has put in 10.7 points over the last three games. The Spartans have picked it up in three-point shooting too, hitting 40.9 percent as a team in the last three compared to the season percentage of 36.4.
AT BATTLE WITH UNLV ENDS IN 76-67 LOSS IN VEGAS
San José State was knocked down a handful of times by big UNLV runs on Wednesday night, but got up every time until the Runnin' Rebels eventually pulled out a 76-67 win on their home floor. SJSU surrendered a 9-0 run to UNLV and fell behind early, 16-9. However the Spartans answered right back with an 11-0 run of their own to regain the lead. UNLV had a lead swell to as large as 12 points before SJSU reeled it back in to three points midway through the second half. But in the end, Brandon McCoy's 22 points and 17 rebounds propelled UNLV to victory. Four Spartans finished in double-figure scoring, led by Ryan Welage for the 16th time this year with 21 points. Oumar Barry put in a career-high 12 points.
WELAGE BECOMES SECOND-LEADING 3-POINT SHOOTER AT SJSU
Ryan Welage banged a three right before the halftime buzzer at UNLV on Wednesday night which gave him 139 for his career. With that he moved into second on San José State's all-time made 3-point baskets list, passing Adrian Oliver. He went on to make four 3-pointers on the night which gives him 140 coming into Saturday's game. Tim Pierce with 153 made threes in his career is SJSU's all-time leader.
WELAGE RISES OUT OF SHOOTING DIP
Over a four-game stretch that included games on the road at New Mexico and San Diego State and at home against Air Force and Nevada, Ryan Welage hit just 33.3 percent of his shots. He was also just 4-of-14 from downtown during that stretch. But his 22-point performance on 9-of-17 shooting on January 24 at Boise State proved to be the slump-buster. Since then (3 games) Welage is shooting a team-high 53.8 percent (28-52) from the field and 53.3 percent (8-15) from 3-point land. He poured in a career-high 37 points against Wyoming and had 21 points on Wednesday at UNLV. It was his 11th game of 20 or more points and the 16th time in which he led SJSU in scoring.
FISHER III SHOWING CONSISTENCY FOR SPARTANS
Inconsistency is something head coach Jean Prioleau says the Spartans have struggled with all year. But as we hit the midway point of Mountain West play the Spartans know they can count on the production of forward Keith Fisher III. He has finished in double-figure scoring in five of the last six games and is SJSU's leading rebounder during that stretch and overall this season. The redshirt freshman is averaging 13.7 points and 6.7 rebounds over the last three games while playing 34.4 minutes per contest. He is the only Spartan to start all 21 games this year and even if his stat production takes a dip, his vocal leadership and hustle never misses a beat.