GW Men's Hoops Set for Saturday Showdown at No. 10 Saint Louis
GW (20-6, 8-4) at #10 Saint Louis (24-2, 11-0) | Saturday, Feb. 22 | Chaifetz Arena | 8 p.m. ET | CSN+, SNY, FSN Midwest, CampusInsiders.com
Feb. 20, 2014
WHO: GW Men's Basketball (20-6, 8-4)
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - GW men's basketball looks for its second victory over a ranked opponent this season when it visits No. 10 Saint Louis on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET.
GW (20-6, 8-4) is currently fourth in the A-10 standings, trailing league leader SLU (24-2, 11-0) by 3.5-games and second place VCU and Saint Joseph's by just a half game. The Colonials are a half game ahead of fifth place UMass and Richmond in their quest for a top four seed and a bye through to the A-10 Championship quarterfinals at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., March 12-16.
GW reached the 20-win plateau for the first time since 2006-07 with a 73-65 triumph at Richmond on Tuesday. The Colonials placed five scorers in double figures for the sixth time this season to help secure Coach Mike Lonergan's 13th career 20-win season in 21 years as a head coach, and the fifth time in nine years at the Division I level.
Tuesday's win marked the team's third Top 50 RPI triumph and ninth win against an RPI Top 100 opponent, based on the most recent NCAA RPI report.
Leading scorer Maurice Creek sparked the Colonials with 16 points off the bench against the Spiders for his team-best 20th double-digit scoring game of the season. Joe McDonald (14 points), Isaiah Armwood (14), Kevin Larsen (11) and Patricio Garino (10) rounded out the double-figure scorers against Richmond, with Larsen adding 13 rebounds for his fourth double-double of the season.
Creek leads a cast of five players scoring in double figures for the Colonials, the lone team in the Atlantic 10 with such scoring balance. Creek's 60 three pointers this season equal the 10th-most in a single-season in program history, while senior teammate Nemanja Mikic ranks fifth all-time at GW with 182 career threes.
GW will look for a second win over a ranked team this season after knocking off No. 20/18 Creighton, 60-53, in the third-place game of the Wooden Legacy in early December. Senior forward Isaiah Armwood and the Colonials limited Bluejays' National Player of the Year candidate Doug McDermott to seven points, his lone single-digit scoring effort this season, in posting the program's first win over a Top 20 team since No. 12 Maryland in December 2004.
The Colonials' most recent victory over a Top 10 opponent also came in December 2004 when they knocked off No. 11/9 Michigan State in the game prior to toppling the Terrapins en route to the 2004 BB&T Classic crown.
GW dropped a 66-58 decision to No. 18/19 Saint Louis at the Smith Center last March to fall to 5-5 all-time against the Billikens. The Colonials will be seeking their first road victory in the series (0-4), which includes a pair of losses inside Chaifetz Arena, SLU's home since the 2008-09 season.
Coaches with more than 400 career victories will face-off for the second time in GW's Mike Lonergan (420) and SLU's Jim Crews (406). However, the pair's relationship extends beyond just their second meeting as coaches as in May 2007 the two joined the likes of GW alumnus Mike Brey, Fran Fraschilla and the late Skip Prosser, among others, on a week-long Operation Hardwood tour of Kuwait to boost morale among U.S. military members.
Saint Louis is ranked in the Top 10 for the first time since 1964 and owns the nation's third-longest win streak at 18 consecutive games following Wednesday's 89-85 overtime victory at George Mason. The Billikens' starters combined for 81 points against the Patriots, paced by guard Jordair Jett's 25 points, 24 of which came in the second half and overtime. Forward Dwayne Evans leads the team with 14.7 points and 6.4 rebounds, while Jett adds 13.7 points and 5.0 assists and 6-foot-11 forward Rob Loe provides 10.1 points and 5.3 boards.