Friday, December 10, 2010

Yellowjackets Look to Snap Losing Skid against Dixie State

BILLINGS, Mont. – With just three games remaining before the real start of the conference season, the Montana State Billings men’s basketball team is looking to reverse its luck from the first six games of the year, starting with a home contest Saturday night against Dixie State College at 5:15 p.m.

The Yellowjackets (1-5, 0-2 GNAC) are looking to snap a four game slide that includes a pair of conference losses to Western Washington and Simon Fraser a week ago. The Jackets last victory came at home against Minot State back on Nov. 20, 83-63.

In their last two games, MSUB dropped hard-fought decisions at Western Washington (82-90) and at Simon Fraser (79-94) to kick off the Great Northwest Athletic Conference season. The Jackets again struggled with turnovers in both game, but both opponents shot well over their season average against the Yellowjackets.

Seniors DeAndre Chambers and Raason Young continue to lead the Yellowjackets statistically as the year continues. Chambers is averaging 16.8 points per game with 3.3 rebounds and has a team-high 10 steals. Youngs is scoring 16.0 points with 4.8 boards per game.

Junior Robert Mayes has showed steady improvement in each game, averaging 12.5 points and a team-leading 8.8 rebounds per contest. Jaxon Myaer is leading the team in assists with 36 total on the year and 8.7 points per game.

As a team the Yellowjackets are averaging 76.2 points per game and are shooting 47.1 percent from the field. The Jackets are knocking down just 33.3 percent of their three-pointers and have shot 66.3 percent from the line. MSUB is outrebounding opponents this season 36.5-33.8 on average.

Dixie State has won two-straight games after suffering a setback, 57-65, at Mesa State Nov. 27.  The Red Storm enter the game with a 6-3 record overall and have already taken down three of the GNAC’s top teams in Alaska Anchorage (75-58), Western Washington (86-80) and at Seattle Pacific (68-61).

The Red Storm, the defending PacWest Conference Champions, is currently led by Tom Whitehead, averaging team-highs in points (15.7) and rebounds (5.1) per game. Griffon Jones is the only other Red Storm player in double-figures this season, accounting for 12.0 points per game and 5.0 boards.

Dixie State is scoring 70.8 points per game and holding opponents to 60.6 points per contest. DSC is pulling down an average of 35.3 rebounds in a game and has been stingy on defense, forcing 14.9 turnovers each game with a +1.6 turnover margin.

The Red Storm is shooting 43.6 percent from the field, including shooting 32.0 percent from downtown. They have solid from the line as a team, shooting 78.6 percent from the charity stripe and have limited opponents going to the line.

Tomorrow’s game sponsor is the United Way. All MSUB home games can be seen and heard on the MSUB website, Listen in as Ken Adelblue will have the call from courtside.

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