The teams: Tarleton Texans (10-10, 3-4 WAC) vs. Utah Tech Trailblazers (10-10, 2-5 WAC)
Where: Stephenville, Texas
Sand: wisdom gym
Day and hour: Thursday at 7pm CT
Streaming Platform: ESPN+ (Kyle Youmans, Byron Anderson)
Radio: Tarleton Sports Network (Kyle Crews)
ABOUT THE MATCH
- This is the fourth meeting of all time, all in the last two years. However, this is the first game in Stephenville. The Texans lead the series 2-1. All three games were decided by 14+.
- At last year’s meeting, Tarleton had just 10 capable players and three coaches due to COVID-19 protocols. They played only six players and still won 83-69. freddy hicks had 27 points and five boards, Javontae Hopkins had 18 points (7-9 FG), Noah McDavid he had 17 points and three steals.
- Utah Tech just snapped a five-game losing streak on the season with an 89-76 win against NMSU.
- Tarleton is a perfect 8-0 at home, their best home start to a season since 2014-15, a year they started 11-0 at Stephenville. They also have 10 straight home wins going back to last season, their longest streak from January 21 to November 21. January 21, 2015 (13 straight home wins).
- Tarleton is one of two undefeated WAC teams at home (Seattle U). Under head coach Billy Gillispie, the Texans are 24-8 (.750) at home over his three seasons.
- The Texans have been rolling offensively at home, averaging 83.1 points on 51.5 percent shooting, including 41.6 percent from distance. That’s well above his road marks of 58.8 PPG at 38.3 FG% and 22.4 3PT%. Tarleton have won by an average of 23.3 points at home this year.
- With a win on Thursday, Tarleton would make its best conference start in eight games since joining the WAC at 4-4. They started 3-5 last year and 2-6 in 2020-21.
- Tarleton sits 8th in the WAC standings with a 3.5 margin of play going into the WAC Tournament. In the WAC MBB’s resume seeding system, Tarleton is also eighth, while Utah Tech is ninth.
- The Texans have lost consecutive games for the first time since December 6-18 (three games). They had their lowest-scoring games of the season in the last two, with 47 at Seattle U and 48 at CBU.
- Tarleton’s leading scorer, freddy hickshe returned from a nine-game absence last Thursday at Seattle U. Next Thursday will be his first home game since December 3.
- In the last game, Tarleton played 17 players from his 19-man roster and all 17 guys who traveled.
- Shamir Bogues – Bogues has been the constant for Tarleton over the last five games, averaging 13.4 points on 26-of-46 (.565) shooting and 6.6 rebounds during the stretch. In four of the five games, she has scored in double figures. Going into the span, he had three 10-plus point games in the first 15.
- garry-clark – Clark just posted his third 10+ point game of the year going 13 points on 4-of-8 shooting, plus 5-of-6 from the free throw line, adding four rebounds. Per 40 minutes, Clark has the second best rebounding average on the team at 8.9, behind only brown rod at 9.6.
- shakur daniel – Daniel barely played 39 minutes in the last game, registering seven points and five rebounds. Daniel is averaging the most minutes in both the overall WAC at 35.5 MPG and in conference play at 38.5 MPG. Nationally, he ranks 43rd in minutes per game.
NUMBERS TO KNOW
eleven: Tarleton will have a great chance to win it back offensively on Thursday as Utah Tech is 11 IN THE WAC ON SCORING DEFENSE, allowing 72.4 PPG. The Trailblazers also allow the highest field goal percentage at .465.
70: The number 70 usually means a win for Tarleton, as the Texans are 9-1. THIS SEASON BY SCORING 70+ POINTSand 1-9 when scoring under 70. Tarleton is also 10-1 when leading at halftime and 9-2 when outscoring opponents.
29.4: At home against D1 opponents, Tarleton averages 29.4 FREE KICK ATTEMPTS PER MATCH, the second highest average in games between D1 opponents in the country. Overall this season they are at 25.2 FTA per game, the fifth most in the country and second most in the WAC (UTRGV leads with 27.4).
5.4: Texans have AVERAGE ROTATION MARGIN +5.4 this year, tied for the seventh best in the country with No. 3-ranked Houston (who was just No. 1 last week). Tarleton is second in the WAC behind Sam Houston at +5.8. The Texans just committed a season-low four turnovers.
UNTIL NEXT TIME FOR TARLETON
The Texans will host the Grand Canyon for the first time in two seasons with a matchup on Saturday at 7 pm CT. The Lopes are 13-7 this year and 4-3 in WAC. Saturday’s game will be Rodeo Night as fans are encouraged to don their western garb and show their Texan pride. There will be 250 free foam cowboy hats distributed.