Cal Poly, UC Riverside meet in conference play

Cal Poly (4-13, 1-2) vs. UC Riverside (12-8, 2-2)

Student Recreation Center, Riverside, California; Thursday, 10 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: Big West foes meet as Cal Poly takes on UC Riverside. Cal Poly fell 65-61 at Hawaii on Thursday. UC Riverside lost 69-53 to UC Irvine on Saturday.

LEADING THE CHARGE: The Mustangs have been led by sophomores Junior Ballard and Kyle Colvin. Ballard is averaging 10.9 points while Colvin is putting up 8.1 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. The Highlanders have been led by Callum McRae and Arinze Chidom, who have combined to score 17.8 points per outing.

CLAMPING DOWN: The Mustangs have allowed only 61.3 points per game across three conference games, an improvement from the 74.6 per game they allowed against non-conference opponents.JUMPING FOR JUNIOR: Ballard has connected on 33.3 percent of the 60 3-pointers he’s attempted and has gone 3 for 8 over his last three games. He’s also made 78.3 percent of his foul shots this season.

WINLESS WHEN: The Highlanders are 0-5 when they allow at least 69 points and 12-3 when they hold opponents to anything under 69 points. The Mustangs are 0-11 when they score 69 points or fewer and 4-2 when they exceed 69.

COLD SPELL: Cal Poly has lost its last eight road games, scoring 60.1 points, while allowing 74.5 per game.

DID YOU KNOW: The UC Riverside defense has allowed only 60.9 points per game to opponents this season, ranking the Highlanders 21st among Division I teams. The Cal Poly offense has averaged 63.1 points through 17 games (ranked 289th, nationally).