ETSU looks to extend streak vs Mercer
Freedom Hall Civic Center, Johnson City, Tennessee; Wednesday, 7 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: East Tennessee State looks for its 11th straight win in the head-to-head series over Mercer. In its last 10 wins against the Bears, East Tennessee State has won by an average of 11 points. Mercer’s last win in the series came on Feb. 28, 2015, a 69-64 victory.
BIG MEN ON CAMPUS: Bo Hodges has averaged 13.5 points and 5.7 rebounds to lead the charge for the Buccaneers. Complementing Hodges is Tray Boyd III, who is maintaining an average of 13 points per game. The Bears have been led by Djordje Dimitrijevic, who is averaging 18.1 points and 4.3 rebounds.
DEFENSIVE IMPROVEMENTS: The Buccaneers have given up just 62.8 points per game to conference opponents so far. That’s an improvement from the 66 per game they gave up in non-conference play.DOMINANT DJORDJE: Dimitrijevic has connected on 40.3 percent of the 119 3-pointers he’s attempted and has gone 14 for 25 over his last three games. He’s also made 84.4 percent of his foul shots this season.
WINLESS WHEN: Mercer is 0-8 when scoring fewer than 67 points and 10-3 when scoring at least 67.
STREAK STATS: East Tennessee State has won its last 12 home games, scoring an average of 79.4 points while giving up 56.3.
DID YOU KNOW: The East Tennessee State defense has forced opponents into turnovers on an impressive 23.8 percent of all possessions, which is the 28th-highest rate in the country. Mercer has turned the ball over on 21 percent of its possessions (ranked 286th among Division I teams).