January 5, 2014

Men's Basketball Game Central: Quinnipiac vs. Iona - Monday, Jan. 6, 2014 at 7:00 PM Live on SNY

Quinnipiac University Bobcats (7-5, 2-1 MAAC) vs.
Iona College Gaels (6-6, 3-0 MAAC)
Monday, January 6, 2014 – 7:00 p.m.
TD Bank Sports Center – Hamden, Conn.
Series vs. Iona: 1-0
Last Meeting: November 16, 2012 – W, 98-92 (OT)
QU Last Five: 2-3
Iona Last Five: 1-4 

Multimedia Links - Iona  QU Game Notes
 Iona Game Notes  Live Video
 Live Stats  WQUN 1220 AM Audio


QU Hosts Iona
With its win against Monmouth on Saturday, the Quinnipiac University men's basketball team (7-5, 2-1 MAAC) is one of five MAAC teams with a winning record in conference play. Up next, the Bobcats host Iona College (5-6, 2-0 MAAC) on Monday, Jan. 6, 2014 in a game that will be televised throughout the region on SNY. The game ends a five-game road swing for the Bobcats and marks their first home game since Dec. 6. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center. 

Live on SNY
Quinnipiac's game against Iona College will be televised live on SNY. The Voice of the Bobcats Bill Schweitzer will have the play-by-play with Billy Mecca alongside for color commentary. Jayme Parker will also join the broadcast with reports from the sideline. 

Other Multimedia Links
Bobcat fans can access live video - with play-by-play and color commentary provided by AM WQUN 1220 - by clicking on the appropriate links at QuinnipiacBobcats.com or by visiting YouTube.com/quinnipiacathletics, clicking on "Videos" and then "Events". Bob Mortali will have the play-by-play call with Bob Tipson's insight on color commentary. Fans can also tune into live stats as well. 

All-Time Against Iona
Quinnipiac and Iona met for the first time last season at the 2012 Paradise Jam in St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. The Bobcats outlasted the Gaels in overtime, 98-92, to advance to the semifinals of the tournament. Ike Azotam led Quinnipiac with 21 points and 10 rebounds while Zaid Hearst added 17 points. Ousmane Drame had 10 points. 

Scouting The Gaels
Iona took full advantage of the lighter portion of its non-conference schedule by posting a 5-2 mark through its first seven games. However, the Gaels followed with a four-game losing streak, a skid that was recently snapped on Saturday against Niagara. Seven players scored double-digit point totals for Iona in a record-breaking 118-92 rout of Niagara in Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference play at the Hynes Center. The Gaels recorded a school-record 34 assists and set a new standard for points in a non-overtime contest. Iona, who does own a 3-0 record in conference play, is led by Sean Armand, averaging 21.3 points per game which ranks him second among MAAC players. AJ English (15.8), David Laury (12.8) and Tre Bowman (12.1) are also averaging double-figures for the season. Iona leads the conference in points per game (83.1) but ranks 10th in scoring defense (80.4). Quinnipiac will look to exploit the Gaels on the backboards as they ranks 10th in the league in rebounding margin (-4.8). 

Last Time Out against Monmouth
For the second straight year, Quinnipiac traveled to Monmouth and dominated the hardwood at the MAC. Led by Ike Azotam and Umar Shannon, the Bobcats put together a monstrous second half and coasted to a 94-77 victory on Saturday afternoon. Quinnipiac improved to 7-5 overall with the win but more importantly moved to 2-1 in MAAC competition. The Bobcats received double-figures offensively from five different players. Azotam had 24 points and 16 rebounds while Umar Shannon scored 23 points on 5-of-9 shooting from behind the arc. Ousmane Drame, Zaid Hearst and Kasim Chandler all had 10 points apiece. 

Home Cooking
Quinnipiac is 9-1 in its last 10 home games at the TD Bank Sports Center. Since head coach Tom Moore took over in 2007, the Bobcats are 59-32 (.648) on Lender Court. 

Scoring the Basketball
Umar Shannon netted 23 points against Monmouth, marking the eighth time he has reached double-figures in a game for the Bobcats. He was 5-of-9 from behind the arc, marking his second consecutive game with five threes in a game. His 10 threes are the most threes in a two-game stretch since James Johnson tallied 11 back in 2010-11. Shannon has 1,088 career points between his brief career at Quinnipiac and his stay at Saint Francis University. Shannon is averaging 12.7 points per game at Quinnipiac which ranks him third among Bobcat players and 18th in the MAAC. 

Feed the Big Man
Matching a season-high of 24 points against Monmouth, Ike Azotam has 1,289 career points and is closing in on James Feldeine '10 (1,320) for sixth place among the Quinnipiac Division I scoring leaders. In the 2012-13 season, he was the 10th player to score 1,000 points in the Division I era and 26th all-time. Azotam trails Joe Trimarchi '98 (1,293) for 17th on the all-time list. 

Double-Double Machine
Ike Azotam collected his 33rd career double-double against Monmouth. Azotam only sits behind Justin Rutty's '11 mark of 41 for second in Quinnipiac's Division I history. He has double-doubles in six out of his last nine games and at least 17 points in five straight. Azotam leads the MAAC in offensive rebounds per game (4.5) and rebounds per game (10.7). That has him tied for third and tied for eighth in the nation, respectively. He also ranks ninth in double-doubles (7).  

In Elite Company
Ike Azotam has 844 career rebounds which puts him in seventh place all-time in program history. He currently sits in second place since among Division I players, only trailing Justin Rutty's mark of 1,032. Ike Azotam corralled his 800th career rebound against Rider (12/8) and joined an elite group of five other Quinnipiac players to record 1,000 points and 800 rebounds in a career. Azotam was just the second Division I player to accomplish the feat, as he and Rutty are the only two players to do it since 1998. 

A Force on the Block
Ousmane Drame nearly collected his 14th career double-double with 10 points and nine rebounds against Monmouth. He is nearly averaging a double-double over his last 10 games (13.8 ppg/9.4 rpg), recording at least 10 points in nine of the 10 and at least 10 rebounds in half of them. Drame has reached double-digits in 15 of his last 18 games dating back to last season, which included the third 20-point game of his career against Fairfield (12/6). He has four double-doubles on the season. 

Rejection is the Key to Success
Ousmane Drame matched his career high and Division I program record with six blocks against Fairfield (12/6). Drame has 87 for his career which has him ranked third in the DI era and top 10 all-time at Quinnipiac. QU set a new season-high with nine blocks against Fairfield (12/6). 

Efficiency is the Answer
Zaid Hearst collected his eighth career double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds against Vermont (12/15). Hearst has double-doubles in five out his last 10 games and has 10 or more points in 15 of his last 19 games dating back to last season. He is fourth in the MAAC in rebounding (8.3), fifth in free-throw percentage (.818) and 16th in scoring (14.5). 

Filling The Stat Sheet
Shaq Shannon had six points, four assists and three rebounds against Monmouth. Shannon has 11 rebounds (3.1) and 13 assists (3.3) over the last three games. 

Built Ford Tough
James Ford had nine points and four rebounds in 16 minutes of action against Monmouth. He was 3-of-7 from the field and 2-of-5 from behind the arc. Ford set a new career high with 10 points off the bench against Rider (12/8). He was 4-of-5 from the floor and 2-of-3 from long range helping the Quinnipiac comeback bid. Ford is averaging 7.0 points per game in just 10.8 minutes per outing. 

Chandler Getting Comfortable
Kasim Chandler has scored 10 or more points in eight out of his 12 collegiate games. He had 10 points, three assists and three rebounds against Monmouth, which featured a 6-for-6 effort from the free-throw line. Chandler is averaging 10.0 points per game this season, ranking him 29th in the MAAC and second among rookies. He has at least 10 points in three out of his last four games. 

Stacking Up In New England
Head Coach Tom Moore's .572 overall winning percentage is fourth best among active Division I Coaches in New England, only trailing UConn's Kevin Ollie (.705), Harvard's Tommy Amaker (.651) and Vermont's John Becker (.614). (Winning percentage among coaches with at least one season at respective institution)  

Rebounding Dominance
The Bobcats lead the nation in rebounding margin (13.3) and are second in the nation in offensive rebounds per game (17.4) and rebounds per game (46.2). Last year, Quinnipiac led the nation in total rebounding (42.1) and offensive rebounding (15.9) and was second in rebounding margin (10.4). In 2011-12, Quinnipiac led the nation in offensive rebounds per game (16.7), and finished second in total rebounds per game (43.2) and rebounding margin (10.2). Quinnipiac is the only team in the nation to finish first or second in each category over the last two seasons.  

Rebounding Margin
With Tom Moore at the helm, Quinnipiac has out-rebounded its opponent in 173 of his 201 games (.861) – including 44 straight without losing the battle on the glass. In 68 of the 201 games, QU has posted a plus-10 or better rebounding margin, including 19 with plus-20 or better and a rebounding-margin high of 31 against Maine on Monday, Nov. 25, 2013. The Bobcats hold a remarkable 58-10 (.853) mark when holding a plus-10 edge and a 15-4 (.790) record with plus-20. Quinnipiac's 44-game streak is far and away the longest active streak in the nation.  

Another Rebounding Stat…
Quinnipiac posted 50 rebounds for the third time this season against Fairfield (12/6), marking the 20th time during the Division I era. In nine years prior to Tom Moore's arrival, QU had just five 50-rebound games, with only two coming against teams classified at Division I at the time of competition. The Bobcats have eclipsed 60 rebounds twice. 

Free-Throws Make a Difference
Over the last five seasons, Quinnipiac is 47-9 (.839) when making more free-throws than its opponent, including a 7-1 mark this year. Furthermore, the Bobcats are 9-0 in the last two seasons when making 25 or more free-throws. 

Less Fouls, More Wins
The Bobcats are 11-4 over the last two seasons when their opponent makes fewer than 12 free-throws in a game. On the contrary, when the opposition has recorded 25 or more free throws made over the last two seasons, Quinnipiac is 0-6. 

Tough to Lose If You Don't Miss
Quinnipiac shot 50 percent from the floor for the second time this season against Monmouth. The Bobcats connected on season-best 58.6 percent of its field goals against Monmouth last year (2/7/13), nearly eclipsing 60 percent for the first time since 2010. The Bobcats made at least 50 percent of their shots in 29 games over the last five seasons, posting a 24-5 (.828) mark when accomplishing that feat.

Defense Wins
Head coach Tom Moore has repeatedly stressed the importance of keeping opposition to below 40 percent from the floor, and with good reason. Over the past five years, Quinnipiac is 53-14 (.791) when keeping its opponent to below 40 percent from the field. This also includes a perfect 12-0 mark in the 2009-10 season.

Looking Ahead
Quinnipiac is back in action on Thursday, Jan. 9 with its third game in a six-day stretch. The Bobcats host the MAAC preseason favorite Manhattan College with tip-off is slated for 7 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center. The game will be televised on SNY.