Men's Hoops on the Road for Saturday Game at Toledo
MUNCIE, Ind. -- The Ball State men's basketball team visits Toledo for a 2 p.m. tipoff Saturday in Mid-American Conference West Division action at Savage Arena.
The Cardinals (12-14, 5-8 MAC), coming off a 95-90 home victory over Central Michigan, have won four of their past five games and three of their past four road contests.
Toledo (13-12, 8-5 MAC), the second-place team in the MAC West, lost for just the second time in its past nine games Saturday at Western Michigan.
• Radio (Flagship): Ball State Radio Network (104.1 FM WLBC); Play-by-play: Joel Godett; Analyst: David Eha
• Internet: Live audio at ballstatesports.com; live video at mac-sports.com; live stats at utrockets.com
• Ball State trails 43-39 in the all-time series with Toledo, but the Cardinals are 6-4 against the Rockets over the past 10 meetings.
• Toledo has won the past two meetings after the Cardinals had won the previous three.
• The Rockets hold a 27-11 lead in games played in Toledo, although Ball State has won its past two visits to Savage Arena -- Jan. 22, 2011 (70-60) and Jan. 10, 2012 (70-68).
• The teams met earlier this season in Muncie on Jan. 30 with Toledo earning an 85-78 victory. Jauwan Scaife scored 23 points in the game for Ball State, while Rian Pearson had 24 for Toledo.
A Quick Look at the Cardinals
• Ball State won for the fourth time in its past five games Wednesday with 95-90 victory in a shootout against Central Michigan.
• The Cardinals are 12-14 overall and sit in fourth place in the MAC West at 5-8 in league play.
• Senior guard Jauwan Scaife scored a career-high 34 points in the win over Central Michigan -- the most points by a MAC player this season -- to help the Cardinals to their highest point total in a conference game in eight years.
• Chris Bond and Jesse Berry each scored 15 points, while Majok Majok added 10 to go along with a game-high nine rebounds.
• Scaife is averaging 23.0 points per game over the past eight contests, and his 19.4 scoring average in MAC play ranks third in the league.
• Scaife leads Ball State for the season at 15.5 points per game, followed by junior guard Jesse Berry at 12.3 per game and junior forward Majok Majok at 11.0.
• Majok, who leads the MAC and ranks 16th nationally in rebounding, is one of 15 players in the country averaging a double-double at 11.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per game.
• Toledo has won seven of its past nine games with losses only to Buffalo and MAC West leader Western Michigan. The Rockets dropped a 65-62 decision Wednesday to the Broncos and enter Saturday's game at 13-12 overall with an 8-5 MAC record that puts them second in the West race.
• Toledo's Rian Pearson leads the league in scoring for the season at 18.2 points per game, while Julius Brown ranks among the top 10 in both scoring average (13.2) and assists per game (5.7).
• Toledo leads the MAC in team free throw shooting percentage at 76.8 percent and ranks second in average turnover margin (+1.8).
Last Time Versus Toledo
• Jauwan Scaife led four Cardinals in double figures with 23 points and Majok Majok had 16 points and 15 rebounds, but BSU dropped its first meeting with Toledo this season, 85-78 on Jan. 30.
• The Cardinals led 37-35 at the half and then trailed by as many as 15 in the second before cutting it to three in the final minute.
• BSU out-rebounded Toledo 41-25, but UT shot nearly 52 percent and had only four turnovers.
Heating Up Offensively
• Ball State has posted its highest-scoring games of the season over the past two contests and is averaging 90.0 points per game over the two victories with 85 points last Saturday at Southeast Missouri and 95 Wednesday against Central Michigan.
• The 95 points against Central Michigan were the most for Ball State in a conference game since a 96-86 victory over Eastern Michigan in January 2005.
• The 180 combined points in the past two games are the most in a two-game stretch for the Cardinals since going for 106 against Anderson and 80 versus IUPUI (186 total) in December 2004.
Scaife Recognized by College Sports Madness
• College Sports Madness selected Jauwan Scaife as its MAC Player of the Week on Monday after he scored 18 points, handed out five assists and knocked down a 25-foot, game-winning 3-pointer in the final second of Ball State's 85-82 win last Saturday at Southeast Missouri.
Scaife Going Off
• Senior guard Jauwan Scaife is averaging 25.2 points over the past five games (Ball State is 4-1) and 23.0 points per game over the past eight contests.
• He has recorded two of the six 30-point performances by MAC players in league games and is one of only two players in the conference (Buffalo's Javon McCrea) with multiple 30-point games this year -- 30 against Western Michigan (Feb. 9) and 34 against Central Michigan (Feb. 27).
• Scaife has scored double figures in 12 straight games and 15 of his past 16.
• He has scored at least 17 points in 12 of those 16 games and owns more conference games with at least 17 points than any player in the league.
• He became the first Cardinal with 30 points in a game since Peyton Stovall (37 vs. IPFW on Dec. 31, 2007) and the first with 30 in a MAC contest since Skip Mills (38 at Buffalo on March 6, 2006).
Scaife in Crunch Time
• Jauwan Scaife scored seven points, including the game-winning 3-pointer, in the final 1:33 of last Saturday's win at Southeast Missouri.
• Over the past eight games, Scaife is scoring more than one-third of his points in the final five minutes of games. He is logging 8.1 of his 23.0 average in the last five minutes over that eight-game stretch while shooting 56 percent from the floor, 57 percent from 3-point range and 88 percent from the foul line in those last five minutes.
Scaife Scoring Consistently
• Jauwan Scaife is averaging 19.3 points per game over the past 16 contests after averaging 9.5 points over the first 10 games of the season.
• Here is a breakdown of the improvement in Scaife's numbers:
First 10 games: 9.5 ppg, 29.3% FG (27 for 92), 20.0% 3PT (10 for 50)
Last 16 games: 19.3 ppg, 42.9% FG (91 for 212), 36.6% 3PT (45 for 123)
More on Scaife's Scoring
• At 19.4 points per game in MAC play, Jauwan Scaife's scoring average in league games is on pace to be the highest by a Ball State player since Chris Williams scored 25.5 points per game during the conference slate in the 2002-03 season.
• Skip Mills averaged 17.9 points in during league play for the 2005-06 season and Peyton Stovall averaged 17.9 over the 2004-05 league slate.
MAC Tournament Positioning
• Ball State is positioning itself for the MAC Tournament with three league games left.
• This year's tournament, which will include only 11 teams because Toledo is ineligible, will feature five teams with first-round byes.
• At 5-8 in conference play, Ball State is just one game out of a tie for the No. 4 spot currently shared by Kent State, Bowling Green, Buffalo and Eastern Michigan at 6-7.
• The Cardinals hold a two-game lead for the No. 8 seed and a first-round home game.
Playing Well on the Road
• Ball State has found success away from home this season, posting a 5-6 record on the road, including a 3-3 mark in MAC play.
• The Cardinals' five total road wins are tied for the fourth-most in the MAC, behind only Akron (7), Western Michigan (6) and Kent State (6). Ohio and Toledo also have five.
• In conference games, Ball State is shooting seven percentage points higher on the road than at home (47.1 percent on the road, 40.1 percent at home).
Going Down to the Wire
• Ball State has won three games this season in the final second.
• The Cardinals defeated Norfolk State on Majok Majok's dunk as time expired Jan. 2, Eastern Michigan on Chris Bond's free throws with no time left Jan. 9 and Southeast Missouri on Jauwan Scaife's 3-pointer with 0.3 seconds remaining Feb. 23.
Turnover Differential is Key
• BSU averages 12.7 turnovers per game in its 12 wins but 17.0 per game in its 14 losses.
• Ball State is 7-1 when committing fewer turnovers than its opponent but 4-13 when committing more turnovers.
• The Cardinals have had their lowest turnover outputs in MAC play in their past three league wins -- Feb. 13 over Northern Illinois (10), Feb. 9 over Western Michigan (12) and Feb. 27 over Central Michigan (11).
• Junior forward Majok Majok is one of 15 players in the nation averaging a double-double at 11.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per game.
• The last Cardinal to average a double-double in a season was Theron Smith, who tallied 19.6 points and 10.9 rebounds per game in 2001-02.
• Majok, who ranks second in the MAC with eight double-doubles, is averaging 11.4 points and 9.9 rebounds per game in league play.
• With 18 points and 17 rebounds Dec. 5 against Holy Cross (Ind.), he became the first Ball State player since Cameron Echols in 2002 with at least 18 points and 17 rebounds in a game.
Majok on the Glass
• For the season, Majok Majok ranks 16th nationally and leads the Mid-American Conference at 10.0 rebounds per game. He had 16 rebounds two games ago against Eastern Michigan.
• Majok's 46 rebounds over Ball State's three games from Dec. 5 through Dec. 15 were the most in a three-game stretch by a Cardinal since Theron Smith grabbed 46 over three conference games from Jan. 5-12, 2002.
• Ball State is 4-8 in conference play, but the Cardinals have either led or been within one point during the second half in five of their eight losses.
• Here is a closer look at those five games:
Opponent -- Leading or trailing by one (Time) -- Final score
Kent State (1/12) -- BSU trailed 45-44 (6:55) -- Kent State won 61-47
Akron (1/16) -- BSU trailed 47-46 (10:48) -- Akron won 71-64
Central Michigan (1/19) -- BSU led 41-35 (18:04) -- Central Michigan won 71-57
Buffalo (1/23) -- BSU led 49-46 (8:29) -- Buffalo won 66-63
Toledo (1/30) -- BSU led 47-43 (15:07) -- Toledo won 85-78
Cleaning Up on the Glass
• Ball State has out-rebounded 10 of its first 13 Mid-American Conference opponents, including four by double digits -- Miami by 20 (37-17), Toledo by 16 (41-25), Eastern Michigan by 13 (29-16) Jan. 9 and Eastern Michigan by 10 (33-23) Feb. 16.
• Surprisingly, the Cardinals are 2-2 when being out-rebounded and 3-6 when they have out-rebounded their opponent in league play.
• Ball State's +5.1 average rebounding margin in conferences games ranks third in the MAC.
• For the season, the Cardinals are +3.6 on the boards on average.
High Volume Rebounding
• Despite having his minutes limited for much of the season with a back problem, junior forward Matt Kamieniecki ranks second on the team at 5.9 rebounds per game.
• Kamieniecki averages 11.8 rebounds per 40 minutes for the second-best average on the team behind Majok Majok (12.9).
Scaife, Berry on Career Treys List
• Senior guard Jauwan Scaife ranks second on BSU's career 3-pointers list with 188, behind only Patrick Jackson (1998-2002), who holds the school record at 202.
• Junior guard Jesse Berry is quickly climbing the list, as well. He owns 146 career 3-pointers, which ranks sixth in school history. Berry is eight treys away from cracking the top five.
• Scaife also ranks among the school's all-time leaders in career minutes played (3,219, 11th), starts (89, 12th) and free throw percentage (.789, 12th).
Scaife Moving up Career Scoring List
• With 17 points Jan. 16 at Akron, senior guard Jauwan Scaife surpassed the 1,000-point mark for his career.
• The local product from Muncie Central High School became the 26th member of Ball State's 1,000-point club. He now owns 1,232 points to rank 18th in school history.
Berry's Explosive Performances
• Junior guard Jesse Berry scored 20 points Jan. 26 at Miami for his fifth 20-point game of the season and the seventh of his career.
• Berry, the MAC West Player of the Week twice this season and three times in his career, scored a career-best 28 points Nov. 28 against Cleveland State.
• He went for 22 in back-to-back games Dec. 15 at South Dakota and Dec. 18 at Purdue, and he scored 21 in the non-conference finale against Norfolk State.
Bond Knows How to Finish
• Junior forward Chris Bond has connected on 52.8 percent of his career field goal attempts, which is on pace to rank seventh in school history.
• Bond is shooting 58.3 percent in MAC play this season (second-best in the league), including an 8-for-8 effort Jan. 9 at Eastern Michigan, where he scored a career-high 18 points and hit the game-winning free throws.
Bond Stealing the Show
• Chris Bond ranks second in the Mid-American Conference in steals with an average of 2.0 per game and third in league games only at 2.0 per game.
• Bond matched his career-high with five steals, all in the second half, Jan. 26 at Miami.
• He has had eight games this year with at least four steals.
• Bond's 54 steals already have nearly doubled his previous career high of 29 steals last season.
Posley the Distributor
• Freshman guard Marcus Posley leads the Ball State and ranks seventh in the MAC with a 1.7-to-1 assist/turnover ratio.
• Posley had a career-high eight assists last Saturday at Southeast Missouri for his seventh game of the year with at least five assists.
• In only one of those seven games with five assists has Posley had more than two turnovers.
Fields Gets Smaller to Play Bigger Role
• After four years in the program, fifth-year senior center Zach Fields made his first career start in the season opener against Grambling State and has gone on to start 20 of Ball State's 26 games.
• The 6-foot-10 Fields, who has lost 30 pounds in an effort to make a greater impact, is averaging 16.4 minutes per game this year after never logging more than 5.4 minutes per game previously.
• Fields made the most of the opportunity in the opener versus Grambling, logging career highs with 10 points and eight rebounds. His previous career bests were four points and four boards.
Playing without Ramey
• Freshman guard Michael Ramey has been out for the past 15 games as he recovers from an illness suffered in December.
• Ramey played in 10 of the Cardinals' first 11 games and scored in double figures twice -- 11 points versus Wofford and 10 against Holy Cross (Ind.).