Men's Basketball Returns Home To Face South Dakota

Dec. 14, 2017

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SPARTANS RETURN HOME TO FACE SOUTH DAKOTA
The Spartans will hit Walt McPherson Court Sunday for their first home game in nearly a month when South Dakota comes to San Jose for a 3:00 p.m. (PT) tipoff. The contest against the Coyotes is the nightcap of a men's and women's basketball doubleheader with the women's game against Nebraska tipping off at noon. Sunday's game will be broadcast live on the Mountain West Network and on KLIV 1590 AM radio. The Spartan Ticket Office has tickets available for Sunday's game and every SJSU men's basketball game for the remainder of the season.
 
GAME #10
San José State (2-7) vs. South Dakota (9-3)
Sunday, December 17, 2017, 3:00 p.m. (PT)
The Event Center (5,000)
San Jose, Calif.
 
Tickets: Spartan Ticket Office (408924-7589)
Live Video: Mountain West Network
Radio: KLIV 1590 AM
Live Stats: GameTracker
 
Series: SJSU leads, 2-0
Last Meeting: SJSU beat South Dakota, 93-52, at home on November 30, 1974
Trend: The Spartans have won the only two meetings in the series
 
MAKE A HOLIDAY ASSIST WITH YOUR SPARTANS
This Sunday the San José State men's and women's basketball programs are hosting a toy drive during the doubleheader alongside San Jose's Sunday Friends charity organization. The two teams encourage you to bring toys, gifts or gift cards to local stores and place them in the designated bins inside The Event Center. The gifts will be given to less fortunate families during events held at nearby Lowell and Santee Elementary schools.
 
ROAD WARRIORS
San José State's game on December 17 is the only home game in a span of 38 days. SJSU beat Idaho State in its last contest inside The Event Center on Nov. 22. Since then the team went on a four-game road swing going to Bowling Green, Southern Illinois, Denver and Portland. After Sunday the Spartans don't play at home again until Dec. 30 against Colorado State.
 
HISTORY WITH SOUTH DAKOTA
San José State's men's basketball history with South Dakota is very short with just two meetings coming in the 1973-74 and 1974-75 seasons. The Spartans came out on top of both contests under the direction of head coach Ivan Guevara.
 
MORE ON SOUTH DAKOTA
The Coyotes are 9-3 this season heading into their game Thursday night at Northern Arizona. They won 88-79 on the road at Bowling Green, lost by just five on the road at currently ranked #14-TCU and took a visit to Duke where they lost 96-80. The result at Duke is their only loss in the last five games. Matt Mooney leads the team in scoring at 16.5 points per game, while Tyler Hagedorn is also averaging double-figure scoring at 13.1 per game. South Dakota is coached by Craig Smith in his fourth season.
 
WHILE THEY WERE AWAY...
While the Spartans were on their long road trip Ryan Welage continued to be the team's leading scorer averaging 16.5 points over the four games. He scored 23 points at Bowling Green (11/29) and 21 points at Portland (12/9). Nai Carlisle played an average of 29.0 minutes per game as the Spartans' point guard. He averaged 9.3 points, 3.0 rebounds and 3.1 assists and scored a career-high 13 points at Bowling Green. Keith Fisher was the only Spartan to start all four games, and he shot better that 52 percent from the field while leading the team in rebounding at 7.5 per game.
 
SPARTANS HAD THEIR CHANCES
The Spartans put themselves in position to come out with a win in each of the last two games on the road at Denver (12/5) and Portland (12/9), but came up empty in both. The Spartans took four shots in the final 34 seconds of a one-possession game against the Pioneers and not one of them found the bottom of the net. Against the Pilots, SJSU made just one basket from the field in a stretch of 13:21 during the second half, but they still weren't out of it. At least not until a series of critical turnovers in the final minutes gave Portland enough free throws to pull away with the win.
 
WELAGE TOP-5 IN MOUNTAIN WEST SCORING
Ryan Welage's 18.2 points per game ranks fifth among all Mountain West scorers through games as of December 13. He's had one 30-point game and four 20-point games so far this season. Welage finished the month of November as the league's leading scorer at 20.2 points per game.
 
KEEPING TOP-25 IN REBOUNDING MARGIN
San José State is 25th in the country with a +8.3 rebounding margin against opponents. Only Southern Illinois University has out-rebounded the Spartans this season. Isaiah Nichols at 6.2 rebounds per game is the Spartans' overall leader, but Keith Fisher has chipped in over the last four games pulling down 7.5 per contest. The battle on the boards should be interesting on Sunday as the Coyotes come in with a +3.9 rebounding margin against their opponents.