For the second time in three games the Winthrop men’s basketball team will take on Savannah State when it hosts the Tigers Monday evening at 7 p.m.
Winthrop has dropped two straight and is 2-2 on the year; the Eagles’ current losing streak began with a 59-58 loss at Savannah State on Nov. 20 in Savannah, Ga.
During the Eagles’ first two games, the team averaged 79.5 points while shooting 42 percent from the floor, 39 percent from three and 74 percent from the foul line. Over the course of the two-game skid, Winthrop is averaging just 61 points, while shooting 38 percent from the floor, 31 percent from three and 61 percent at the charity stripe. Defensively the numbers have improved as opponents are averaging 2.5 fewer points per game and shooting 39 percent as opposed to 43 percent in the first two games.
The Eagles are coming off a 69-65 loss to East Tennessee State at home just before the Thanksgiving break. Redshirt senior Keon Moore scored 24 points as he recorded his first double-double with 10 rebounds and has now scored 20 or more points in three of the four games on the year. He’s shooting 46 percent from the field and 47 percent from three while averaging 21.8 ppg.
Senior Andre Smith is the only other Eagle averaging double-figures at 13.0 per game and leads the team with 22 assists and nine steals. He’s shooting just 35 percent from the floor and 39 percent behind the arc as he’s scored in double-figures in all four games.
In the first meeting with Savannah State, Moore led all scorers with 20 points while Smith added 12. The two were a combined 11-for-23 from the floor and 7-for-14 from three. The rest of the team was 9-for-30 from the floor and 0-for-7 from three.
The Tigers have also lost two straight games which have come at Louisville and just a three-point defeat at Jacksonville State. Savannah State is 2-4 on the year with the two wins coming over Winthrop and Cleveland State.
In its two home games Savannah State has averaged 73 points per game while allowing 70.5 per game. In the four road games, the Tigers average 49.3 ppg and allow 75.8.
There have been five different leading scores for the Tigers in their six games as the offense is led by Javaris Jenkins at 10.3 ppg while Terel Hall is averaging 9.2. Hall was responsible for the Eagles loss to Savannah State just 10 days ago with a 3-point play with a second left in the game.
Jenkins is 9-for-16 on the year behind the arc and shoots 44 percent from the floor. Hall is shooting 61 percent from the floor and leads the team with 25 assists. Jenkins had just two points in the first meeting with Winthrop as the Tigers were led in that game by Hall’s 15 points while Saadiq Muhammed added 14 points and Alante Fenner had 11.
Winthrop will be looking to avoid back-to-back losses at the Winthrop Coliseum for the first time since 2012-13 when it fell to North Carolina Central and High Point. Winthrop hasn’t lost two straight at home to non-conference opponents since 2008-09.