The Redfoxes take to the road tonight to face off against the Fairfield Stags in Bridgeport, CT. The game will be broadcast nationally online on ESPN3 as well as live audio and stats on goredfoxes.com. Marist is coming off an eleven point win over St. Peter’s last Saturday and will try to win back to back games for the first time this season.
Nickname: The Stags
Location: Bridgeport, CT
Head Coach: Sydney Johnson
2011-2012 record: 22-15, (11-6)
Record so far this year: 10-10 (2-6)
Fairfield is 0 for their last 5 with their last win coming back on January 3rd against Canisius. Before going on this 5 game losing streak, the Stags had been riding high on a 6 game win streak. Marist should count themselves fortunate to be playing them on a downspin. It will important for the foxes to start fast and not give their hosts a chance to snap out of their funk. Do not let the losing streak fool you, this is a good MAAC team. During this streak of loses they have lost by a combined 26 points. Fairfield has been playing good enough to win while showing an inability to close.
The stags have found a consistant scorer in 5-11 senior guard Derek Needham. Needham is contributing a healthy 14.5 ppg and has started every game this year. Where Needham provides the scoring and skill, 6-8 freshman forward Amadou Sidibe provides toughness and tenacity down low. Sidibe has pulled down a team best 111 rebounds on the year while scoring 5.3 ppg.
The Redfox team that will take the floor hardly resembles the squad that started the year for Head Coach Chuck Martin. Only Adam Kemp and Chavaughn Lewis started on opening night and Lewis was at the 3 for that game and has played the 2 recently while senior guard Devin Price recovers from injury. Freshman Phil Lawrence has stepped into the 4 while junior Jay Bowie recovers from injuries of his own. Red-shirt junior Anell Alexis gets his third start in a row at the 3 while Lewis fills in for Price in the backcourt.
Lewis will need to score early and often with Price still out of the lineup. Lewis and Price are the teams leading scorers, each at over 14 ppg. In Price’s absence though, Anell Alexis has played some solid minutes as a starter. The New Jersey native tallied 9 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists and a block while committing only one turnover in 24 minutes. Adam Kemp will be another prime time player who needs to step up to give Marist its first win streak of the year. Kemp is coming off a career best 18 rebound performance against St. Peter’s. the 6-10 Kemp has 2 inches on Fairfield’s tallest player so look for him to dominate down low once again.
Fairfield is a in a state of disarray at this point in the season. After starting so hot the wheels have really begun falling off. Marist is in the midst of a similarly disappointing season but a win tonight could give them a late season surge reminiscent of last year’s campaign. Marist has the talent to pull this one out but being at home is a great equalizer for the stags. This one seems almost too close to call, but we’ll all find out shortly when these two teams take to the hardwood.
Marist Probable Starting Line-up Fairfield Probable Starting Line-up
#11 Isaiah Morton 5-8 Guard #3 Derek Needham 5-11 Guard
#40 Chavaughn Lewis 6-5 Guard/Forward #25 Colin Nickerson 6-3 Guard
#15 Anell Alexis 6-6 Forward #41 Keith Matthews 6-5 Forward
#35 Phillip Lawrence 6-7 Forward #20 Marcus Gilbert 6-6 Forward
#50 Adam Kemp 6-10 Center #21 Amadou Sidibe 6-8 Forward