Men's Basketball Returns to RAC for Saturday Matinee Versus Stingy New Hampshire

Men's Basketball Returns to RAC for Saturday Matinee Versus Stingy New Hampshire

New Hampshire at UMBC Game Notes 

UMBC (13-7. 4-3 America East) completes the first half of America East Conference play when they welcome the New Hampshire Wildcats (14-7, 5-1 AE) on Saturday, Jan. 28. The contest will be just UMBC's second at home in a span of 20 days. Tip-off time at RAC Arena is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.  


Gary Stein, Paul Mittermeier and Hailli Woo have the call on ESPN3.


Live stats will be available via and fans can also follow via the men's basketball program's Twitter feed (UMBC_MBB). Access of live stats is also available via UMBC Front Row, UMBC Athletics' mobile website.


RETRIEVERS' UPDATE: UMBC (13-7, 4-3 America East)  sliced a 21-point first half deficit to 46-45 midway through the second half, but could not complete the rally and fell to Stony Brook (11-9, 6-1 AE), 83-73, at IFCU Arena.


Senior forward Will Darley and junior guard Jairus Lyles scored 20 points each for UMBC. Junior guard Rodney Elliott sparked the second half comeback by tallying all of his 13 points in the final 20 minutes.  


But UMBC could not overcome 34.4 percent shooting against the defending America East champions.


Lyles leads the squad and is second in America East in scoring, averaging 20.3 points per game. The 6'2" guard is also UMBC's top rebounder at 6.8 caroms per game, good for fourth in the conference. Named America East Player of the Week for the second time this season on Dec. 26, he is currently ranked 30th in the country in points per game.  


Darley is scoring at a clip of 15.0 points per game and leads the team with 19.0 points per outing in seven America East contests.  Sophomore forward Joe Sherburne is now ranked fourth in the nation in 3-pt. field goal percentage at 51.5 percent and is averaging 12.7 points per contest. Darley (112) and Sherburne (111) are ranked tenth and tied for 11th in program history for 3-point field goals made.


Through games of Jan. 27, UMBC was 41st in the nation in scoring average at 80.8 points per game. They are also ranked 19th nationally with 9.7 three-point field goals made per game and 20th in 3-pt. field goal percentage (39.7).


DOG BYTES: UMBC leads America East in scoring (80.8), 3-pt. field goal percentage (39.7), and treys per game (9.7). They are ranked second in assists (14.8), steals (6.8), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.2) and defensive rebounds (26.1), third in scoring margin (+5.4), and fourth in field goal percentage (47.7).


The 13 victories are UMBC's most since posting 15 in the 2008-09 campaign and the six road wins are the most since earning nine in 2007-08.


WILDCATS' UPDATE: New Hampshire (14-7, 5-2) has won three straight and holds a one-game lead over UMBC in the league standings. UNH is 7-4 away from Lundholm Gym this year and also has posted three straight road victories.


Junior post Tanner Leissner leads a balanced attack with 16.0 points per game and has hit 102-of-121 free throw (84.3 percent) attempts on the season. Senior guards Jaleen Smith (15.9 ppg, 88 assists) and Daniel Dion (14.0 ppg, 63 treys) and senior post Iba Camara (9.3 ppg, 8.4 rpg) give the Wildcats a dynamic group on both ends of the floor. UNH leads America East in scoring defense, allowing only 64.0 points per game.  


Most recently, UNH pulled away down the stretch to defeat visiting UMass Lowell, 80-71, on Wednesday. Smith and Leissner each scored 24 points as the Wildcats made 22 more free throws (25-3) than the River Hawks. 


THE SERIES:  New Hampshire leads the all-time series, 16-9, and has won five straight and eight of the last ten. In Baltimore, UNH has captured 8 of 12 contests.  UMBC's last win occurred in January of 2013, when they prevailed, 68-57.


LAST YEAR'S MEETINGS: Despite 28 points from Jairus Lyles, UMBC dropped a tight 84-81 decision to UNH at the RAC Arena in January. Neither team led by more than four points in the final 27 minutes of play, but Tanner Leissner's trey with 59 seconds remaining gave the visitors a 78-75 lead. Rodney Elliott's off-balance trey before the buzzer came up short of the mark.


To conclude the regular season, the Retrievers trimmed a 19-point second half deficit to three, but came up short in a 78-69 setback. Lyles produced another brilliant effort, scoring 27 points, but UNH's Jaleen Smith scored 23 to lead the victors.


WHO'S UP NEXT: UMBC opens the second half of America East play with a two-game road swing next week. They start with a trip to Binghamton on Wed., Feb. 1, then leave Friday for a Saturday afternoon contest at Maine. The tip-off at Binghamton is slated for 7:00 p.m.