Saturday, January 17, 2009

Marquette-Providence Preview

The Golden Eagles are on the road tonight for another Big East Conference matchup against the Friars of Providence (11-5, 3-1). Marquette (15-2, 4-0) goes into the contest tied atop the Big East Conference standings and ranked 14th nationally by the associated press and the coaches. The Friars are currently 6th in the conference and one game back behind Marquette and number one ranked Pittsburg (16-0, 4-0). The game is being broadcasted on ESPN2 at 8 pm CT.

Marquette is currently off to its best Big East start ever at 4-0. A victory tonight would match the Golden Eagles longest win streak at 8 games. After playing three of the team’s first four BIG EAST outings in Milwaukee, the Marquette will now hit the road for five of their next seven games, including a three-game road swing in early February.

Marquette will again rely on the contributions of their “big three” in tonight’s matchup. Senior guards Wesley Matthews, Jerel McNeil, and Dominic James are all averaging over 11 points per game, with Matthews’ 18.9 ppg ranking him 3rd in the conference. Coach Buzz Williams relied heavily on the play of his guards in last week’s victory over West Virginia. Both James and McNeil played all 40 minutes, combining for 43 points, nine rebounds and eight assists.

The Golden Eagles with have to key on junior point guard Sharaud Curry, who is currently averaging 9.3 ppg and 4.6 assists. First year coach Keno Davis is also getting performance out of his bench this year. Superb sixth man, sophomore Marshon Brooks, is averaging near 13 points and 4 rebounds per contest.

Marquette claimed victory in last year’s matchup at the Bradley Center with a decisive 96-67 win.

John Forristal
MUTV Sports

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