MEN'S HOOPS CLOSE OUT BRIEF ROAD STRETCH WITH VISIT TO OVC LEADER MURRAY STATE
January 5, 2018
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MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin men’s basketball team will look to even its Ohio Valley Conference record when it makes the quick jaunt to Murray State for a road showdown on Saturday, Jan. 6. Tipoff from the CFSB Center is scheduled for 7 p.m.
Although Murray State leads the all-time series between these two schools by a 48-7 margin, the Skyhawks have claimed each of the last two games in the series. UT Martin defeated the Racers by a 73-67 margin in last year’s OVC Tournament semifinals and also turned away Murray State in the 2016-17 regular season finale (83-76).
This matchup clashes two of the most successful OVC programs in recent history. Since the start of the 2015-16 season, the Skyhawks (48) and Murray State (44) rank second and third, respectively, in most overall victories amongst OVC schools (trailing only Belmont’s 54).
The Skyhawks (6-10, 1-2 OVC) began their two-game road trip with a narrow 75-69 setback at Austin Peay on Thursday. In that game, UT Martin trailed by 13 points with 9:21 to go before tying the score at 62-all at the 4:38 mark. However, the Governors accounted for the next eight points and the Skyhawks could not recover despite a game-high 23 points out of Matthew Butler and a perfect 14-of-14 team shooting performance from the free throw line.
Murray State (11-3, 3-0 OVC) is one of three undefeated teams in OVC play after an 89-73 home win over Southeast Missouri on Thursday. The Racers leads the league in scoring offense (82.7 points per game), scoring margin (+16.5), field goal percentage (.493), three-point field goal percentage (.385) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.4).
Reigning two-time OVC Player of the Week and conference scoring leader Jonathan Stark dialed up a season-best 36 points (including a 14-for-14 showing from the charity stripe) during Thursday’s win against Southeast Missouri.
A free live stream of the game can be found on the OVC Digital Network. That link, in addition to radio links for Mix 101.3 FM, WUTM 90.3 FM and live stats, can be found at the top of the webpage.