Gameday Preview: #2 Men's Basketball vs Purchase

On Tuesday night, the Macs will host the Purchase College Panthers at the Max Stern Athletic Center at 8:00 PM with their sights set on a 7-0 record to begin the season.


The Macs enter this game with a 6-0 record, and are coming off of an impressive 94-57 win versus St. Joseph’s College last Thursday night. If the Macs can pull off another victory, they will move to 4-0 in conference play on the season.


Historically, the Panthers have been on the more dominant side when it comes to facing the Macs. They have beaten the Macs 16 times since 2007, in contrast to the Macs’ 13 victories. However, the Macs were the winners of the last two contests between the teams, the last of which occurred in the 2020 Skyline Conference Championship Game.


The Panthers come into Tuesday’s contest with an 0-3 record, seeking their first win of the season. The Panthers dropped their last game 109-60 against Wesleyan University on November 17th. This game will be their first Skyline contest of the season, providing them with an early-season test versus the #2 ranked Macs. The team is led by senior guard James Brady, who is currently averaging 9.7 points and 4 rebounds per game. Brady is also shooting 88.9% from the free-throw line and playing an average of 31 minutes per game. Another Panthers player to watch is senior guard Malcolm Hansford-Whyte, who is leading the Panthers in scoring, averaging 11.7 points per game while also shooting 87.5% from the free-throw line. With these two seniors leading the way, the Macs will have their hands full.

The 6'8" Jordan Armstrong will look to make his presence felt against a smaller Purchase team (Photo Credits: Joe Bednarsh)

KEYS TO THE GAME:


Win the Rebound Battle

  • The Macs come into Tuesday’s game averaging 42.2 rebounds per game, in contrast to the Panthers’ 35 rebounds per game. Despite the rebound margin being in favor of the Macs, the Panthers have the ability to haul in plenty of rebounds and take away key scoring opportunities from the Macs. If the Macs can win the rebound battle, it will open up more opportunities for them to showcase their elite scoring capabilities.

Shooting the 3

  • The Macs are currently the second-best 3-point shooting team in the Skyline Conference, shooting 39.6% from beyond the arc this season and hitting almost 11 3-pointers per game. The Panthers, on the other hand, are shooting just 24.1% from beyond the arc and have attempted 79 3-pointers in their three games so far this season. The Macs must continue their dominance from the perimeter in order to pile on the points during this game. If the Macs shoot the ball like they have shown they can, then the Panthers won’t be given much of a chance to claw back into the game.

Capitalize on Turnovers

  • The Macs are scoring just 14.8 points per game off of turnovers, while their opponents have turned the ball over an average of 15.8 times per game. The Panthers average 16 turnovers per game so there will be ample opportunity for the Macs to pile on the points versus the Panthers. However, if the Macs want to win this game in a convincing manner, they will need to capitalize on the Panthers’ turnovers and convert them into points at a higher rate than they have been so far this season.


How to Watch:

Tip-off for Tuesday’s game is scheduled for 8:00 PM. Watch the game on Macslive here.


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