GAME NOTES: The Georgia Southern Eagles will try for the improbable season sweep of the Davidson Wildcats this afternoon when the Southern Conference rivals square off in the regular-season finale at Belk Arena.
Davidson already locked up the SoCon regular-season title with a 16-1 league mark, although that lone loss came against Georgia Southern earlier this season, 70-57. The Eagles never trailed in that contest, but they do trail the all-time series, 28-7.
Davidson has not tasted defeat since that first meeting on Jan. 14 as the team enters the weekend riding a 13-game winning streak, the fourth-longest active streak in the nation. The Wildcats have also taken care of business at home, with 11 wins in 12 tries this season. They are coming off a 69-63 victory at Elon on Wednesday night.
Georgia Southern can be seeded as high as No. 6 or as low as No. 9 for the upcoming SoCon Tournament, depending on today's results. The Eagles followed up a 78-61 win over Furman last weekend with a 66-60 victory at UNCG on Wednesday. Head coach C.Y. Young was particularly pleased with Wednesday's effort in his post-game remarks.
GSU was led by C.J. Reed's season-high 23 points in the win over UNCG. Reed shot just 4-of-17 from the floor but made up for it with a perfect 14-of-14 showing at the free-throw line, and he also tallied nine rebounds and five assists. Cameron Baskerville chipped in with 19 points and 11 boards for his first double-double since 2010. The Eagles were absolutely dominant on the boards as they posted a 50-29 advantage. The 50 rebounds were a season-high, and 21 of those came on the offensive glass. Thanks to that team-wide commitment to attacking the boards, GSU was able to overcome a 2-of-8 shooting night from leading scorer Eric Ferguson, who finished with as many points as turnovers (five). On the season, Ferguson is averaging 14.0 points along with a team-best 6.4 rebounds per tilt. Reed is second on the squad with 13.2 ppg and has knocked down 57 3-pointers (.358).
Davidson boasts an impressive +17.6 scoring margin during its current win streak. The Wildcats have really stepped up defensively, as they have held foes to 39.7-percent shooting from the floor and 58.2 points per game over the last 13 outings. The savvy 'Cats continue to grind down the opposition behind their nation's best 81.8-percent free-throw shooting. Nik Cochran (10.0 ppg) has made a near-perfect 103-of-108 attempts, and he is also a 47-percent shooter from beyond the arc (43-of-91). Jake Cohen (14.9 ppg, 5.7 rpg) and De'Mon Brooks (13.2 ppg, 6.3 rpg) are the team's top two scorers and rebounders. Chris Czerapowicz (9.3 ppg) is a 40-percent shooter from the perimeter who also helps out on the boards with 5.1 rpg. On Wednesday night, it was Czerapowicz who came through with a season-high 20 points to help the Wildcats knock off SoCon North Division leader Elon on the road.
The Eagles had lost 11 straight meetings with Davidson before snapping that skid earlier this season. Granted, the Wildcats don't have much to play for here, although they certainly would not mind exacting some revenge for what was perhaps their worst performance of the season.
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