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PREVIEW: Tars Set to Battle Lone Star Conference in Vegas

PREVIEW: Tars Set to Battle Lone Star Conference in Vegas

Complete Game Notes (.pdf)

Match-up:
Holiday Hoops Classic
Dec. 18 – Rollins (7-2) vs. Angelo State (7-2) – 3 p.m. ET
Dec. 19 – Rollins (7-2) vs. Tarleton State (7-2) – 3 p.m. ET

Where:
Las Vegas, Nevada | Doolittle Center

Coverage:
WATCH: Tars Sports Network – RollinsSportsLive.com
LISTEN: WPRK 91.5 FM – TuneIn (mobile)
LIVESTATS: SportTours.net

Set-up:
After getting legendary head coach Tom Klusman the 700th win of his career, Rollins next heads west for the Holiday Hoops Classic in Las Vegas, Dec. 18-19. The Tars will be coming off an 11-day layoff from games due to final exams. Rollins broke out of a two-game skid to start Sunshine State Conference play, having won its last two. Win No. 700 didn't come easy as the Tars held off Palm Beach Atlantic on the road, 80-79 the last time out. Up first for Rollins in the desert is Angelo State. The Rams are 7-2 on the year and have also won their last two, including a 74-61 win over the Tars following opponent, Tarleton State. The Texans will face LeMoyne on the first day of the event before tangling with the Tars. Tarleton is 7-2 on the season before opening up with the 6-3 Dolphins on Tuesday. All games are played at the Doolittle Community Center in North Las Vegas.  

Tracking the Tars:
Rollins heads to Vegas after producing consecutive wins and grabbing a first Sunshine State Conference victory of the year. Klusman's 699th win was a convincing 98-57 triumph over Warner at home and 700th was a different story as the Tars had to outlasted PBA on the road 80-79. Connor Mckim tallied 18 points and five assists to lead the Tars while Trevor Recio netted 14 off the bench. The Tars bench came up big in the game, scoring 27 points and shooting 10-of-16 from the field. Jakobi Bonner is seventh in the SSC and leads the Tars with 16.3 points per game. He is shooting 62 percent from the field and is also getting 5.3 rebounds a game. Mckim averages 15.2 points and three assists a game. His 22 steals are the third most in the league. Daniel Loh is averaging 9.6 points and 5.2 rebounds a night while Hutton Yenor scores 9.1 points a game. Rollins is averaging 82.2 points a game and allowing 71.1 while also sitting +4.8 in rebounding margin.  

Tracking the Rams:   
Angelo State comes into the game against Rollins with a matching 7-2 record.  The Rams are outscoring teams by 13.5 points on the season with both losses coming by single digits. ASU is coming off a 26-point thrashing of St. Mary's in Lone Star Conference action. Antonio Singleton tallied 33 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Rams while Daron Mims tallied 16. On the season, Mims leads the way with 14.3 points a game. Ronald Belle is setting 13.3 points and 7.1 rebounds a night while Singleton averages 11.3 points. The Rams are also strong on the glass, averaging 8.8 more rebounds a game than opponents. ASU scores 83.4 points a game and is allowing 69.9. The Rams were picked fourth in the Lone Star Conference preseason poll.

Tracking the Texans:    
Tarleton State opens the Holiday Hoops Classic with LeMoyne before meeting Rollins. The Texans head to Vegas at 7-2 and 1-1 in the LSC. After a 74-61 loss to Angelo State, Tarleton bounced back with an 81-59 beating of Arlington Baptist on Wednesday. Led by Josh Hawley's 24 points, the Texans led by 19 at the half and cruised in the second. Hawley is the leading scorer on the season with 15.9 points a night. The junior forward also leads the squad with 10.6 rebounds a game. Corinthian Ramsey scores 14.6 points a game and hands out 3.9 assists a game. Randall Broddie adds 11.2 points a game. The Texans are scoring 79.2 points and allowing 71.9 points a game Tarleton was picked to finish third in the LSC preseason poll.

Notes:

  • Since making it an annual trip in 2000, Rollins is 17-17 in Las Vegas. The Tars have played a variety of teams at venues including the Doolittle Center, Arena at South Points, Orleans Arena, Desert Oasis High School and the UNLV McDermott Center.  
  • The Tars are 2-5 all-time at the Doolittle Center after dropping a pair last year.
  • Rollins is 0-2 all-time against Angelo State. ASU beat Rollins 87-76 (12/19/15) and 85-80 (12/18/16) in the second meeting.
  • Rollins is 1-1 all-time against Tarleton State. The Tars won the first meeting on December 20, 2003 (75-64) and fell on December 18, 2015 (76-51).  
  • As a team, Rollins is sixth in Division II in total steals (103) and steals per game (11.4).
  • Rollins ranks 13th in the nation in turnovers forced per game (19.22).
  • Connor Mckim (RC) is 24th in the nation with 22 total steals.
  • Jakobi Bonner (RC) is 30th in the country with 65 free throw attempts.
  • Angelo State is 13th in the nation in rebounding margin (+8.9).
  • Angelo State is 11th in the nation in offensive rebounds per game (15.0).
  • Tarleton State is seventh in the nation in fouls per game 13.6 infractions a night.
  • Josh Hawley (TSU) is eighth in the country in reobunds per night (10.6)
  • Josh Hawley's (TSU) five double-doubles are the 10th most in the nation.
  • Head coach Tom Klusman (700-408) has the fourth-most wins among active Division II coaches and the ninth most all-time.

Next up:
Rollins is off for the holiday break, but right back in action on Wednesday, January 2 at home against Nova Southeastern. The Sharks are one of the hottest teams in the nation and ranked top-10 in multiple polls. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Warden Arena. All games can be heard live on the Tars Sports Network at RollinsSports.com and locally on 91.5 FM WPRK.

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