Preview: Robert Morris looks to slay Drexel University Dragons

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Preview: Robert Morris looks to slay Drexel University Dragons

Photo credit: David Auth

Photo credit: David Auth

Photo credit: David Auth

Photo credit: David Auth

Ryan Giacobbi

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PHILADELPHIA — The Robert Morris University Colonials (4-3) wrapped up a game against the Youngstown State University Penguins (3-5) on Wednesday with a 76-56 win, but now they have turned their attention towards the Drexel University Dragons (3-4). The Colonials will be playing the Dragons on Saturday, Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. in a cross-state game at Drexel with hopes of exposing their flaws.

Recapping RMU

Looking at Wednesday’s game against the Penguins, the first half for RMU was very close as it ended with a 32-31 lead for Robert Morris, but at the beginning of the game, the Colonials jumped to a very early 8-0 lead. After that, YSU began to slowly climb back to tie the game at 14 points apiece.

YSU slowly took over the lead in the first half before RMU stormed back to take a 32-31 lead at the end of the first half for the Colonials. In the second half, the RMU Colonials ran away with the lead from the very beginning of the half to win the game against the Penguins by a final score of 76-56.

Looking at the statistics from this game, Malik Petteway had one of the strongest performances for the Colonials on Wednesday night, where he used 19 minutes of play to deliver six field goals, four free throws and scored 16 points on the night.

Scouting Opponents

Offensively, the Dragons are a strong team, as they are scoring an average of 79.9 points per game this season and allowing 72 points on average for their opponents. Drexel, as a team, is at a .459 field goal percentage and at a.376 3-point field goal percentage. Their opponents are at a .439 field goal percentage and a .328 3-point field goal percentage. Robert Morris will have some competition offensively against the Dragons.

Defensively, Drexel is a little bit low on blocks. They currently have 16 blocks as a whole and are only averaging 2.3 blocks per game. In steals, the Dragons are only generating steals on 5.3% of their opponents’ possessions according to kenpom. This ranks 338th in D-1 basketball.

Players to Watch

Josh Williams (RMU): Williams currently has 216 minutes of play this season with 120 points. In addition to that, he has 38 field goals out of 82 attempts with a .463 field goal percentage. He also has 33 three-pointers this season, most of which were picked up in RMU’s game against Mount Aloysius in which he made 15 shots from behind the arc which tied the NCAA single-game record. This performance earned him the NEC Player of the Week Honors. In the last game against Youngstown State, Williams had three made three-pointers in the win. He will be one to watch against Drexel.

Jon Williams (RMU): My other pick is Josh’s brother Jon. Jon has 213 minutes played this year and generated 48 points during that time. In addition, he has made 12 field goals out of 37 attempts which makes a .324 field goal percentage to go along with it. Williams also has 11 three-pointers this season. Against YSU, Jon scored 12 points with three field goals from behind the arc in the win.

Matty McConnell (RMU): As for McConnell, he has played 212 minutes this season with 54 points. He also has 17 field goals for 56 attempts with a .304 field goal percentage. McConnell also has 11 3-pointers to help contribute to the Colonials. In the last game against the Penguins, McConnell had four field goals, one three-pointer and 12 points scored.

Alihan Demir (Drexel): Demir performed very well in his last game against NJIT, where he put up 35 minutes of play with 18 points scored. Demir also had eight field goals out of 14 attempts and two three-pointers scored. In his season totals, Demir has played for 204 minutes with 97 points scored which comes out to 13.9 ppg. In addition, he is averaging 8.3 rebounds per game making him devasting in the paint and a fun match-up to watch between him and Malik Petteway. With strong performances like that, RMU will most surely be preparing for whatever he throws at them.

Prediction

For my prediction, I predict Robert Morris will come out on top in a very close game. I predict the final score to be 84-81. The reason for this is because Drexel is good at scoring, but RMU has Josh Williams on their roster. RMU will try to expose the Drexel Dragons’ struggles at their own home, so I very much predict for this game to be a close call.

 

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