Sunday, November 25, 2012

Hoops For Hope Classic - Sunday Updates

• The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men’s basketball team plays its final game in the Hoops for Hope Classic, squaring off with Rider Sunday afternoon. The game tips off at 3:30 p.m. CST and can be heard live on WISN (AM 1130).

• The Panthers dropped a 71-66 decision to Jacksonville Saturday afternoon. After opening up an 11-2 lead, Milwaukee fell behind 37-23 at halftime and could never get closer than three points in the second half.

• UWM has dropped consecutive games for the first time this season and the common thread in each has been turnovers. Milwaukee committed 19 turnovers in its loss at Arkansas-Little Rock Monday and then had 20 more in Saturday’s defeat.

• Jordan Aaron and Demetrius Harris continue to lead the charge for the Panthers on offense. Aaron has been in double figures in all five of his games in a Panther uniform and is averaging 19 points per game. Harris has been in double figures in each of the last three games and is averaging 12 points per contest.

• Harris is also becoming a force on the boards for Milwaukee. The senior added 12 rebounds to his 16 points Saturday for the first double-double of his career. He is second on the team in rebounding at 5.2 per contest, just behind James Haarsma’s 6.6 Both players have a double-double this season.

• The Panthers continue to play tremendous perimeter defense. Opponents have made just 13-of-69 (18.8 percent) shots from three-point range in the first five games of the season. Milwaukee has outscored its opponents 123-39 on three-pointers.

• Speaking of three-pointers, Milwaukee made just two 3-pointers and tried only 11 in Saturday’s loss. The Panthers had entered the contest making nearly 10 per game on average while attempting over 26 per contest. UWM did have a 38-22 edge on points in the paint in Saturday’s game.

• The Panthers are returning three starters and eight letterwinners from a team that won 20 games and played in the College Basketball Invitational a season ago. UWM also has five seniors on its roster, including returning starters James Haarsma and Paris Gulley. Milwaukee has been picked to finish sixth in the Horizon League and did not land anyone on the preseason all-league team.

• UWM continues to be shorthanded, though, as Gulley has been sidelined by late October by a broken hand. The senior guard is expected to return as soon as next week.

• Rider is 3-3 this season and the Broncos beat Jacksonville Friday afternoon in the Puerto Vallerta.