Hoops In February; Men's Basketball Travels To Wagner Saturday Afternoon

Quinnipiac University Bobcats (8-13, 4-5 NEC) at
Wagner College Seahawks (12-8, 6-3 NEC)
Saturday, February 2, 2013
Time: 4:00 PM
Location: Spiro Sports Center – Staten Island, N.Y.
Series vs. WC: 12-16
Last Meeting: January 28, 2012 (L, 51-50)
Quinnipiac Last Five: 3-2
WC Last Five: 3-2
Live Video Stream: NEC Front Row
Audio: AM 1220 WQUN
Live Stats: Wagnerathletics.com
Live Stats On Your Mobile Device:

Click Here For Game Notes as a PDF

NEC Hoops Continues In February
The Quinnipiac University men's basketball team (8-13, 4-5 NEC) opens the month of February on the road at Wagner College (12-8, 6-3 NEC) on Saturday afternoon. The Bobcats and the Seahawks are set for a 4 p.m. tilt at the Spiro Sports Center in Staten Island, N.Y. Quinnipiac and Wagner are both 3-2 over their last five games. 



On The Air / Multimedia Links
Saturday's game will be streamed online through NEC Front Row by clicking the appropriate links posted on www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com. Fans can also tune into AM 1220 WQUN Radio where Bob Mortali will have the play-by-play call with Luke Mauro providing insight on color commentary. Live stats will also be available on www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com 

All-Time Against Wagner
The Bobcats are 12-16 in the all-time series with the Seahawks. The rivalry dates back to the 1998-99 campaign when Quinnipiac began competition at the Division I level. Over the last four seasons, the Bobcats are 3-4 against Wagner and currently riding a three-game skid. Quinnipiac is 5-9 when playing away from home and 2-1 in their last three trips to the Spiro. 

Scouting The Seahawks
The first half of Northeast Conference play featured highs and lows for Wagner College. The Seahawks won three straight out of the gate, then dropped their next three, and are now currently riding another three-game winning streak. Most recently, Wagner outscored Sacred Heart by a 13-7 count in overtime en route to an 84-78 victory before 2,032 fans at the Spiro Sports Center on Thursday night. Junior Kenneth Ortiz paced three double-digit scorers for Wagner with 17 points, eight assists, six rebounds and three steals while helping limit Shane Gibson to just 6-of-20 shooting, including 2-of-8 from long range, over 42 minutes. Joining Ortiz in double-figures was Jonathon Williams, who finished up with 16 points and six rebounds, and Latif Rivers, who notched 14 points with three assists and three triples. For the season, Williams, Ortiz and Rivers all average in double-figures, led by Williams' 14.6 points per outing. Wagner leads the Northeast Conference in scoring defense and field goal percentage defense. 

Last Time Out Against Mount St. Mary's
Ousmane Drame was one point shy of a 20-point, 20-rebound performance on Thursday night, but the Quinnipiac University men's basketball team's late rally came up just short and left the Bobcats on the wrong end of a 77-73 decision at Mount St. Mary's. Drame was joined by three other Bobcats in double-figures. Zaid Hearst finished with 16 points, 10 coming in the second half, to go along with five rebounds and four assists. Johnson chipped in with 12 points and Evan Conti added 11 points and four rebounds. Jamee Jackson finished with seven points and eight rebounds and Ike Azotam had five points and two rebounds in limited minutes due to foul trouble. Quinnipiac struggled mightily with Mount St. Mary's high pressured defense early on, amassing an eight-point deficit at the break. For the game, Quinnipiac compiled 19 turnovers which resulted in 25 points on the other end for the Mountaineers. The Bobcats also connected on just 16-of-32 from the free-throw line – nine fewer than MSM's 25-of-36 showing. The Bobcats dominated the glass, 50-26, for a plus-24 margin. Quinnipiac ripped down 19 rebounds for 14 second chance points on the offensive end and mustered a 42-30 advantage in the paint. 

Drame's Elite Performance
Ousmane Drame put together a historic performance against Mount St. Mary's (1/31) with 19 points and 20 rebounds. Drame became the 13th player in NEC history with 20-plus rebounds, and of those 13, Drame was the only player to do it off the bench. Drame also played the least amount of minutes of any 20-plus rebounder (29) and his nine offensive rebounds were the most by a player with 20-plus rebounds. His 19 points were the fifth highest for a 20-plus rebounder in the NEC since 1998-99 and he amassed the second most rebounds at Quinnipiac since the Bobcats (then Braves) joined the NECC back in 1981-82 (Victor Akinyanju - 21 vs. Mount St. Mary's). 

Hearst's Scoring Streak
Zaid Hearst has reached double-figures in six out of his last seven games for the Bobcats. Hearst's streak started against Sacred Heart (1/12) and includes a 13-point, 11-rebound outing against Saint Francis (Pa.) (1/17) – accounting for third double-double of his career. It also featured a 17-point effort against RMU (1/19) and two 16-point efforts against CCSU (1/24) and Mount St. Mary's (1/31). 

Defense Wins
Head coach Tom Moore has repeatedly stressed the importance of keeping opposition to below 40 percent from the floor, and with good reason. Over the past five years, Quinnipiac is 47-13 when keeping its opponent to below 40 percent from the field. This also includes a perfect 12-0 mark in the 2009-10 season.  

Cleaning The Glass
The Bobcats have continued their dominance on the glass, leading the Northeast Conference and ranking amongst the national leaders. Quinnipiac is third in offensive rebounding (15.7), tied for sixth in total rebounding (42.0) and fourth in rebounding margin (9.5). In 2011-12, Quinnipiac led the nation in offensive rebounds per game (16.7), and finished second in total rebounds per game (43.2) and rebounding margin (10.2). 

Rebounding Margin Factors In
Rebounding has become the identity of the Bobcats under the direction of Head Coach Tom Moore. With Moore at the helm, Quinnipiac has out-rebounded its opponent in 152 of his 179 games – including 22 straight dating back to last season. In 54 of the 179 games, QU has posted a plus-10 or better rebounding margin, including 14 with plus-20 or better and a rebounding-margin high of 28 against FDU on February 27, 2011. The Bobcats hold a remarkable 47-6 mark when holding a plus-10 edge and an 11-3 record with plus-20.    

Stacking Up In New England
Head Coach Tom Moore's .564 winning percentage is fifth best among Division I Coaches in New England, only trailing Vermont's John Becker (.667), Harvard's Tommy Amaker (.622), Fairfield's Sydney Johnson (.583) and CCSU's Howie Dickenman (.572). (Winning percentage among coaches with at least one season at respective institution) 

Heating Up In February
Over the previous three seasons, Tom Moore and the Bobcats have a 19-5 (.792) record in the month of February. Quinnipiac managed to sustain its late-season success pattern last season, posting a 6-2 record in the final month of the regular season. With six wins in February, the Bobcats improved to 25-7 (.781) over the last four seasons. 

Ike Azotam collected his 25th career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds against Fairleigh Dickinson (1/26) – moving into second place among active NEC players (LIU's Julian Boyd). In addition, Azotam only sits behind Justin Rutty's '11 mark of 41 for second in Quinnipiac's Division I history. Azotam has nine of them this season – tied for first in the conference. 

Climbing The Ladder
Ike Azotam surpassed Bill Romano '02 (580) on Quinnipiac's Division I career rebounding list when he grabbed five rebounds against LIU Brooklyn (1/5). The junior power forward currently sits in second place since Quinnipiac joined the NCAA's top division, only trailing Justin Rutty '11 (1,032). Azotam nearly matched his career-high of 18 rebounds when he hauled in 17 against CCSU (1/24) – only four shy of the Division I record for rebounds in a game. 

Dimes For Dave
Dave Johnson moved into fifth place among Division I career assist leaders at Quinnipiac. Johnson's 366 career assists trail Jared Grasso '02 who finished his career with 404 assists.  

Rejection Is Key
Jamee Jackson recorded his 81st career block against Lehigh (11/27) and moved ahead of Justin Rutty '11 into second among Division I career block leaders at Quinnipiac. Jackson's 95 blocks trail C.J. Vick '05 who finished his career with 106 blocked shots. 

Conti Cashes In
Evan Conti has slipped into his starting role quite nicely for the Bobcats. Conti set new career-highs in points (15) and rebounds (9) against LIU Brooklyn (1/5), falling one rebound shy of a double-double. In 13 career starts for the Bobcats, Conti is averaging 9.3 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Last season, Conti earned his first career nod in the CBI Tournament and posted 14 points and four rebounds against Penn.  

Milestone For Moore – 100 Wins
Head coach Tom Moore picked up his 100th career win against CCSU in front of a large crowd on January 24 at the TD Bank Sports Center. Moore (101-78) reached the milestone faster than any QU Division I coach and become the second fastest in program history. Furthermore, Moore's 100th win was the second fastest (Mike Rice – LIU Brooklyn) among NEC coaches since Quinnipiac joined the conference back in 1998. Moore stands alone at the top among active NEC coaches fastest to 100 wins at the Division I level.

Rebounds, Rebounds and More Rebounds
The Bobcats grabbed a season-high 56 rebounds against St. Francis Brooklyn (1/3). It was the highest rebound total since Quinnipiac set the program record with 61 rebounds against LIU Brooklyn last season. QU has reached 50 rebounds four times this season, four times last season, had six 50-rebound games in 2010-11, had three 50-rebound games in all of 2009-10, and never had three 50-rebound games in 11 prior seasons at Division I. Quinnipiac has pulled down 50 rebounds in a game 18 times in Tom Moore's six years at QU. In nine years prior at Division I, QU had just five 50-rebound games, with only two coming against teams classified at Division I at the time of competition.

On Deck
The Bobcats return home for its next NEC contest against Monmouth University on Thursday, February 7. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center.

Contact: Tony Distasio; ardistasio@quinnipiac.edu