Men's Basketball

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Game Preview: Men's Basketball at Coast Guard

Game Preview: Men's Basketball at Coast Guard

Men's Basketball at Coast Guard
Wednesday, January 27—3 p.m.
Roland Hall—New London, Conn.

Babson and Coast Guard will meet for the 80th time on Saturday in a series that dates back to the 1972-73 season. The Beavers are 53-26 all-time against the Bears and have won 14 straight games between the teams going back to 2012.

Seniors Nick Comenale and Bradley Jacks combined for 42 points as Babson College defeated visiting Coast Guard, 81-65, on January 10 at Staake Gymnasium. Sophomore Frank Oftring scored a then-career-high 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting and pulled down six rebounds, while junior Brandon Johnson chipped in with 13 points, five boards and three steals. Senior Micah Baldez scored 17 points and junior Nolan Benson added 15 to pace the Bears. 

Jevon James scored 20 points and Kevin Sowers chipped in with 15, including a 9-for-11 effort from the free throw line, helping the fifth-seeded Bears knock off fourth-seeded Babson, 62-53, in a NEWMAC Tournament quarterfinal on February 23, 2011, in Babson Park. Matt Zoia '11 had 19 points to lead the Beavers, who built a 14-point first-half lead but shot just 34.9 percent on the night.

Coast Guard (9-7, 1-6 NEWMAC) picked up its sixth conference loss after falling to Wheaton, 82-68, on Wednesday night. Sophomore Justin Kane led the way with a double-double recording 20 points and 17 boards, while classmate Noah Baldez logged 11 points for the Bears, who shot just 39.6 percent in the first half and never led in the game. Sophomore Packy Witkowski (15.6 pts, 5.4 reb) has averaged 13.5 points in four games since returning from injury, Kane (13.8 pts, 9.4 reb) has reached double figures in seven of the last eight games, and Noah Baldez (13.5pts, 4.7 reb) is shooting 56.4 percent from the floor. Coast Guard leads the conference in defensive rebounds per game (29.3), but is giving up 81.6 points. 

Babson (10-8, 5-2 NEWMAC) snapped a two-game losing streak by defeating Emerson, 84-72, on Wednesday night at Staake Gymnasium. Johnson scored a career-high 27 points, while seniors Brian Kelly and Comenale chipped in with 15 points apiece for the Beavers, who used a 35-9 run to build a 26-point lead late in the first half. Comenale (18.4 pts.5.4 reb) ranks 27th in Division III with 59 three-point field goals, Jacks (15.6, 5.9 reb, 1.4 blk) is shooting 50.3 percent from the floor, and Johnson (12.1 pts, 6.8 reb) has put up 20.3 points and 7.7 rebounds while shooting 62.9 percent in his last three games. The Green and White leads the conference in blocked shots per game (3.19) and ranks 38th nationally in field-goal percentage (48.2).

After attempting at least 20 free throws just once in non-conference play, the Beavers have already gone to the line at least 20 times in three of its first seven NEWMAC games. The Green and White attempted 21 free throws in back-to-back games against MIT and Emerson and is shooting a league-best 79.0 percent from the charity stripe in conference play.

Despite being saddled with first-half foul trouble on Wednesday against Emerson, Jacks finished with 12 points and now needs just nine to become the 27th player in program history to reach the 1,000-point mark.

For the second time this season in Wednesday's win over Emerson, the Beavers attempted more three-pointers (29) than two-point field goals (23). The Green and White is averaging a league-best 10.7 triples while shooting 41 percent from beyond the arc in league play.

The Beavers are 8-3 this season when holding their opponents below 80 points.