December 15, 20181st2ndFinal
ETSU183755
Illinois433073
Stats at a GlanceETSUILL
FG Percentage.346 (18-52) .433 (26-60)
3P FG Percentage.273 (6-22) .400 (10-25)
FT Percentage.619 (13-21) .524 (11-21)
Offensive Rebounds1114
Defensive Rebounds2625
Total Rebounds3739
Turnovers2014
Steals88
Bench Points528
LeadersETSUILL
PointsDaivien Williamson - 19
Trent Frazier - 25
ReboundsJeromy Rodriguez - 7
Aaron Jordan - 10
AssistsDaivien Williamson - 2
Carlos Curtis - 2
Trent Frazier - 5
StealsKevon Tucker - 3
Trent Frazier - 3
BlocksSamba Kane - 1
Kipper Nichols - 1
Da'Monte Williams - 1
ETSU begins three-game road swing Saturday at Illinois
ETSU begins three-game road swing Saturday at Illinois
Friday, December 14, 2018

Bucs looking for first-ever win over Big Ten foe

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (Dec. 14, 2018) -- The ETSU men’s basketball team opens a three-game road swing when the Buccaneers take on Big Ten foe Illinois Saturday afternoon inside State Farm Center. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. ET.

ABOUT THE BUCS

LAST TIME OUT

The Bucs closed the final 10 minutes on a 29-9 run to rally past UT Martin 80-62 last Saturday afternoon inside Freedom Hall … Junior forward Jeromy Rodriguez (Santiago, Dominican Republic) led the Bucs with 21 points and 16 rebounds, while Patrick Good (Johnson City, Tenn.) and Tray Boyd III (Memphis, Tenn.) combined for nine three-pointers and 34 points … As a team, ETSU finished with a season-high 21 assists, while shooting over 50 percent for the second straight game as the Bucs were 31-of-61 from the field … The Blue and Gold outscored the Skyhawks 47-24 in the second half, marking the lowest points the Buccaneers have allowed in the second half this season.  

RODRIGUEZ TABBED SOCON PLAYER OF THE WEEK

ETSU junior forward Jeromy Rodriguez was named Southern Conference Player of the Week as the league office announced its weekly award on Tuesday ... Rodriguez finished with his sixth double-double of the season en route to guiding the Bucs to their 18-point win over UT Martin last Saturday .... The Buccaneer forward posted a career-high 21 points (8-of-11 shooting), grabbed 16 rebounds and dished out three assists to help keep ETSU’s perfect 6-0 home record intact.

FAMILIAR FACES SET TO MEET

Former teammates are set to meet Saturday afternoon as ETSU’s Jeromy Rodriguez and Illinois’ Andres Feliz were teammates on the Dominican Republic national teams, as well as spending one year playing together at Northwest Florida State -- where Coach Forbes spent two seasons as the head coach -- going 62-6 between 2011-12 and 2012-13.

LOGGING THE MILES

ETSU begins its three-game road swing this weekend, while then traveling to El Paso, Texas for the Sun Bowl Classic on Dec. 21-22 ... During this trip, the Bucs will log roughly 5,500 miles.

COMEBACK BUCS

ETSU has trailed in six of its eight wins this season, including coming back from a season-high 18-point deficit against Sam Houston State ... The Bucs also trailed by eight points in the second half against UT Martin, while rallying from a seven-point second-half mark against Winthrop ... ETSU has outscored its opponents by 105 points in the second half this season (488 to 383), while the Bucs are shooting 53 percent (182-345) and have a plus-9.4 rebound margin in the final 20 minutes ... Jeromy Rodriguez is averaging 8.5 points and 6.9 rebounds, while shooting 66 percent (37-56) in the second half, and Patrick Good has knocked down 22 of his  33 three-pointers in the second half -- shooting 54% beyond the arc during this frame ... As a team, the Blue and Gold are shooting at a 45 percent clip (55-123) in the second half, with Good and Tray Boyd III combining to go 39-for-78 (50%) from beyond the arc in this stanza.

WINS VS. LOSSES

In their eight wins this season, the Bucs are averaging 85.4 points per game, while holding opponents to 61.1 points (+24.3 scoring margin) ... ETSU also has a +19.0 rebound margin in the wins this year ... Tray Boyd III is averaging 14.6 points, while shooting 49 percent from the field (44-90) and 47 percent from beyond the arc (26-55) ... Mladen Armus is averaging  11.0 points and 9.5 rebounds, while shooting 63 percent (36-57) in the wins and Jeromy Rodriguez is posting 13.6 points, 12.6 rebounds and shooting 62 percent (43-69) ...  Meanwhile, in the Bucs’ three losses they are averaging 66.3 points and allowing 76.0 (-9.7 scoring margin) ... Tray Boyd III is averaging 9.0 points, while shooting 33 percent from the field (12-36) and 15 percent (3-20) from beyond the arc ... Mladen Armus is averaging 5.7 points and 5.7 rebounds in the losses, while shooting 29 percent (7-of-24).

INSIDE THE NUMBERS

When it comes to ETSU’s scoring, the Bucs are dominating their opponents in the paint -- the Blue and Gold are +128 (424-296) in that statistical category ... The Bucs are averaging 38.5 points per game in the paint, while also adding 14.1 second-chance points per contest and 17.5 points off turnovers ... In ETSU’s win over Hiwassee back on Nov. 8, the Bucs scored 70 of their 109 points in the paint, while the bench added 65 points in that contest ... The Bucs’ largest deficit overcome this season was 18 against Sam Houston State back on Nov. 20, where ETSU rallied for a 14-point win, 77-63.

DOUBLE THE FUN

Jeromy Rodriguez leads the Bucs with six double-doubles this season, which ranks seventh nationally … On the season, Rodriguez is averaging 12.2 points and 12.4 rebounds per contest … Rodriguez is only one of six players to average double figures in scoring, rebounding and averaging over 2.5 assists per game.

RODRIGUEZ, ARMUS AMONG NATION’S BEST IN REBOUNDING

Eleven games into the season, the Bucs have posted some of the  nation’s best numbers in regards to rebounding so far this season ... As of games played on Dec. 12, ETSU is 3rd in the nation in rebound margin (+15.2), 4th in total rebounds (477), 2nd in rebounding margin (+15.1) and 10th in offensive rebounds per game (14.8) ... Individually, junior forward Jeromy Rodriguez ranks second in the country with 136 total rebounds, 3rd in rebounds per game (12.4) and offensive rebounds (4.5) and 11th in defensive rebounds (7.91) ... Teammate Mladen Armus ranks 29th in total rebounds (93) ... Rodriguez and Armus are the only Division I teammates to rank in the top-30 nationally in total rebounds.

BUCS EXTEND THREE-POINT STREAK

ETSU made a season-high 10 three-pointers last Saturday against UT Martin en route to extending its streak of making at least one three-pointer to 974 consecutive games … The Bucs’ streak ranks sixth nationally.

ETSU SEARCHING FOR FIRST-EVER WIN AGAINST BIG TEN FOE

ETSU is searching for its first-ever win against a Big Ten opponent as the Bucs have dropped all 17 games against Big Ten foes ... Saturday marks the first  Big Ten opponent for the Blue and Gold since hosting Michigan State on Dec. 10, 1998. 

ABOUT ILLINOIS

Illinois defeated UNLV 77-74 last Saturday at home and improved to 3-7 on the season.

The Illini have won three of their four home games.

Illinois has faced a difficult non-conference schedule as they played then-No. 3 Gonzaga, Iowa State and Xavier in the Maui Invitational, while also facing Notre Dame and Georgetown before opening conference play with Nebraska and then-No. 19 Ohio State.

As a team, the Illini are averaging 76.3 points per game, while making 9.4 three-pointers per game and forcing 17.9 turnovers per game, which ranks 16th nationally … The Illini defense ranks ninth in the nation in turnover rate, forcing turnovers on 24.5 percent of opponent possessions on the season … Illinois also ranks second in the Big Ten in three-pointers made per game and assists per game (15.4).

Three players are scoring in double figures, including Big Ten All-Freshman Team selection Trent Frazier who leads the team with 14.4 points per game, while freshman guard Ayo Dosunmu (12.0 ppg) and senior guard Aaron Jordan (10.4 ppg) are also scoring in double figures … Jordan also leads the team with 24 three-pointers and is tied for the team lead with 4.9 rebounds per game.

Andres Feliz is coming off a 19-point effort in the win over UNLV, while redshirt junior forward Kipper Nichols added 12 points and Dosunmu posted 10 points and five rebounds in 26 minutes.

SERIES HISTORY

Saturday marks the first-ever meeting between the two programs.

COVERAGE

Saturday’s game will be broadcast live on Big Ten Network+ (paid subscription); CLICK HERE FOR LIVE VIDEO 

Fans can also tune into “Voice of the Bucs” Jay Sandos on the radio call via WXSM-AM 640 beginning with the Atmos Energy Pregame Show at 1:30 p.m. ET.; CLICK HERE FOR LIVE AUDIO 

Live stats will also be provided via FightingIllini.com… Fans can access live stats on their computers or mobile devices by clicking here 

UP NEXT

ETSU will head to El Paso, Texas for the 2018 Sun Bowl Classic, which begins Friday, Dec. 21 against Wyoming at 7 p.m. ET ... The winner of ETSU-Wyoming will take on the winner of UTEP-Norfolk State Saturday, Dec. 22 at 9 p.m. ET, while the two losing teams play in the consolation game at 7 p.m.

For complete information on ETSU men’s basketball, follow the program via social media on Twitter (@ETSU_MBB) and Instagram (@etsubasketball). 

For more information on Buccaneer men’s basketball, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s basketball link.