Men's Basketball Visits Saint Louis
Colonials go for fourth straight victory Saturday at 8 p.m. ET
TIPPING OFF: The streaking GW men's basketball team looks to continue its hot streak as it heads on the road for a Saturday evening contest at Saint Louis. The Colonials have won three in a row by an average margin of 20.3 points, and have also won four of their last five.
LAST TIME OUT: GW defeated Richmond, 103-77, in a game that was all but decided by halftime on Wednesday. The Colonials put on a clinic, shooting .727 from the field in the half, including 6-of-7 from three-point range. When all was said and done, the Colonials had emptied their bench after six hit double-figures. Yuta Watanabe led the way with a game-high 23 points, while Arnaldo Toro double-doubled with 16 points and a game-high 10 rebounds. GW finished the game with 30 assists while shooting .689 from the field and .714 from three.
SERIES HISTORY: GW holds a narrow 9-7 advantage, having held the upper hand of late with four consecutive wins in the series. Last season, the Colonials took a 63-55 victory at home before dispatching Saint Louis 53-46 in the Atlantic 10 Championship second round. The Billikens, though, have won all six meetings in Saint Louis.
TURNING IT UP: After averaging just 61.3 points per game in their first eight conference games, GW has turned it up of late, averaging 77.4 ppg in its last seven outings. Over the last five, GW has four 80-point games and is averaging 82.2 ppg. The Colonials are 10-1 this season when scoring 70 or more points.
IT'S BEEN A WHILE: In Wednesday's route of Richmond, GW put up some gaudy statistics which hadn't been seen in some time at GW. Among them: GW's 103 points were its most since scoring 108 on 11/12/13 vs. Maine; Justin Mazzulla's 10 assists were the most by a Colonial since Joe McDonald also had 10 on 3/10/16; six players scored in double figures for the first time since 3/14/14; it was GW's first A-10 game with 100 points since 2/4/04 vs. St. Bonaventure. Additionally, the Colonials' 30 assists and their .689 field goal percentage were its best in a game in at least the last 30 years.
YUTA HEATING UP: Since A-10 play began, Watanabe has heated up from the field. The senior is averaging 17.7 points per game in league games and shooting .453 (34-75) from three-point range. He's hit multiple threes in 10 of the last 11 games and reached double figures in scoring in all 15 games. Over the last five he's been even better, averaging 21.4 points on .538 shooting from three while also adding 8.4 rebounds per game.
TORO'S STARTING SURGE: Toro, who started the first 16 games of the season before coming off the bench in five of the next seven games, has taken advantage of being inserted back into the starting lineup. Over the last five games, all starts, Toro is averaging 12.0 ppg and 8.2 rpg, while playing 29.0 minutes per game. During the aforementioned seven game stretch, he had averaged just 2.7 ppg and 3.4 rpg while playing 15.4 mpg. Most recently, Toro had 16 points and 10 rebounds vs. Richmond for his second double-double of the season.
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