Men's Basketball

2017 NCAA National Champions | 9 NCAA Tournaments | 11 Conference Championships

Game Preview: No. 19 Men's Basketball vs. WPI

Game Preview: No. 19 Men's Basketball vs. WPI

No. 19 Men's Basketball vs. WPI
Wednesday, February 12 | 7 p.m.
Staake Gymnasium | Babson Park, Mass.

SERIES HISTORY
• Babson is 50-32 all-time against WPI in a series that dates back to the 1974-75 campaign.
• The Beavers snapped a two-game skid against the Engineers back in January and have won nine of the last 11 meetings between the programs.
• Seven of the last 11 games between Babson and WPI have been decided by seven points or less.

LAST MEETING
• Senior Jack Coolahan finished 13-of-13 from the floor on the way to scoring a career-high 35 points to help Babson defeat WPI, 93-81, on January 11 in Worcester.
• Coolahan knocked down five triples and junior Andrew Jaworski and senior Frank Oftring added 17 and 13 points, respectively, for the Beavers, who led by as many as 26 early in the second half.
• Garrett Stephenson scored 22 points for the Engineers, who shot 75 percent in the second half and 63.5 percent for the game.

SCOUTING THE ENGINEERS
• WPI (17-4, 8-2 NEWMAC) has won three straight games and is coming off a 90-81 victory over Coast Guard on Saturday.
• Stephenson scored 21 points and junior Kahleb Downing added 20 points on 6-of-8 shooting to go along with eight assists and seven boards for the Engineers, who went 13-of-22 (59.1 percent) from beyond the arc.
• Stephenson (15.6 pts, 5.9 reb) is shooting 65.6 percent from the floor, junior Colin McNamara (11.6 pts, 3.1 ast) has reached double figures in seven of the last eight games, and Downing (10.6 pts, 3.5 reb, 3.4 ast) is shooting 41.4 percent from distance in league play.
• WPI ranks 18th in Division III in field goal percentage defense (39.5) and 19th in scoring defense allowing 64.7 points on the year.

SCOUTING THE BEAVERS
• No. 19 Babson (18-3, 8-2 NEWMAC) has won its last six games following Saturday's 105-70 rout of Clark.
• Coolahan poured in 25 points and first-year Andrew Kirkpatrick matched his season high with 18 as five players reached double figures for the Beavers, who made 13 three-pointers and shot 54.1 percent.
• Coolahan (18.4 pts, 4.0 reb) is shooting 57.7 percent from the floor against NEWMAC opponents, Jaworski (18.2 pts, 6.1 reb) is averaging 22.3 points in league play, and junior Crew Ainge (11.8 pts, 4.8 ast, 4.3 reb) ranks third in the conference in assists.
• The Green and White ranks 16th in Division III in field goal percentage (49.5) and 19th in scoring offense putting up 87.7 points per game.

TOURNAMENT IMPLICATIONS
• The Beavers and Engineers enter Wednesday's clash tied for second place in the NEWMAC standings just a game behind first-place Springfield. Both squads will play the Pride, as well as Emerson, who sits in fourth place at 7-3, over the final two weeks of the regular season.
• Although unofficial, both Babson and WPI are currently projected to earn at-large bids to the NCAA Tournament based on the data of Matt Snyder/@FFTMAG and D3 MBB Bracketology (@d3bubble). The first NCAA regional rankings will be released on Wednesday afternoon.

ONE-TWO PUNCH
• Coolahan and Jaworski have both scored at least 20 points in six of Babson's first 10 conference games and are combining for exactly half of the team's scoring in league play.
• Jaworski ranks second in scoring (22.3 points), third in three-point field goals (30), seventh in three-point FG percentage (44.8) and 10th in overall field goal percentage (50.0).
• Coolahan leads the league with 37 triples, ranks third in both points (21.8) and field goal percentage (57.7), and is sixth in three-point FG percentage (45.7).

SETTING THE TONE
• Ainge dished out a season-high nine dimes in Saturday's win over Clark, and ranks first in NEWMAC games in both assists per game (4.8) and steals per game (2.1).
• He needs three more assists to become the first Babson player to record 100 in a season since Joey Flannery '17 in 2017, and his 35 steals this winter are already the fifth highest total by a Beaver dating back to the 2015-16 campaign.

NUMBER TO KNOW
• The Beavers are 12-0 on the year when outrebounding their opponents.

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