GAME NOTES: Riding high after a thrilling comeback victory, the Northeastern Huskies challenge the Tulane Green Wave in the finale of the Tulane Classic at Devlin Fieldhouse.
Things looked grim for Northeastern in yesterday's matchup with Milwaukee. The Huskies trailed, 46-26, with 13:34 to play but rallied to claim a 62-59 victory. The win was just the third of the season for the Huskies and ended a six-game losing streak. Northeastern will host Richmond next time it hits the floor.
Tulane made easy work of Alabama State, claiming an 84-66 win to get its work started in the two-day event. The Green Wave have won two of their last three tilts and moved back to .500 overall (6-6) with Saturday's victory. The next time they are on the floor will be Dec. 28 against Kansas State as part of the Brooklyn Hoops Winter Festival at the Barclays Center.
These teams met in back-to-back seasons during the 1989-90 and 1990-91 campaigns. The Huskies won both bouts.
The paint was owned by Tulane in its win over Alabama State. The Green Wave held a 42-16 scoring advantage from the interior and also claimed a 36-24 edge on the boards. Jonathan Stark led the way with 25 points, while Tre Drye cleaned up with 14 rebounds.
It was quite an offensive eruption for Tulane, which is only averaging 71.3 points per game on 43.6 percent shooting this season. The Green Wave also rarely have the upper hand on the boards, ranking 15th in Conference USA in rebounds (34.1 pg). Louis Dabney (20.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg) leads a trio of double- digit scorers for Tulane. He finished with 19 points, while also handing out five assists against Alabama State. Stark (18.1 ppg, 4.3 apg) added five assists to his team-high point total. Jay Hook (16.2 ppg, 6.2 rpg) is also a viable scoring option.
The Huskies went on a 36-13 run over the final 13 and a half minutes to best Milwaukee. Scott Eatherton scored the last four points of the game and finished with a game-high 20 points to go along with 10 rebounds. Demetrius Pollard added 11 points as the only other player in double figures.
Northeastern can't hope to win games by digging itself into huge holes very often. The Huskies are only scoring 67.2 points per game and knocking down 44.7 percent of their attempts from the field. Luckily, they have kept teams in range by limiting foes to just 69.6 percent shooting. Eatherton (17.6 ppg, 10.8 rpg) has been a constant staple for unit, piling up nine double-doubles this season. David Walker (11.5 ppg) can be called on to carry the offense at times, but is only shooting at a 36.3 percent rate from the floor. Reggie Spencer (10.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg) works with Eatherton on the front lines.
It took an improbable comeback for Northeastern to win on Saturday. Expecting the Huskies to come out hot after such a taxing victory may be too much, especially against a Tulane team that breezed through its latest duel.
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