College Basketball Preview: UMBC (17-10, 9-3) vs. Vermont (21-5,11-1) game televised on ESPNU

UMBC men’s basketball will face the America East conference leaders, Vermont Catamounts, in a rare Thursday evening match-up at the UMBC Event Center.   

The Retrievers (17-10, 9-3) held on to defeat the UMass-Lowell River Hawks, 70-66, at home on Saturday afternoon.

UMBC got big games for junior guard K.J. Jackson and junior forward Arkel Lamar, each finishing with 17 points.  The Retrievers held a comfortable lead for the majority of the second half but were forced to weather a comeback attempt by the River Hawks, who cut the lead to two points late in the contest.

The victory marked the eighth in their last nine games.  The Retrievers stand at 9-4 on their home court this season. 

Graduate student forward Joe Sherburne leads UMBC in points per game, averaging 14.5 with Jackson chipping in 12.1.  Defense continues to be a focal point of the team as they allow just 64.4 points in conference games. 

Vermont (21-5, 11-1) has had an outstanding season, and continues to show why they are a perennial powerhouse in the America East.  They have won six in a row, though in their last game they had to hold off a valiant Hartford team, winning 77-75. 

Junior forward Anthony Lamb leads the Catamounts in scoring, coming in at 21.5 points per game.  Redshirt senior guard Ernie Duncan checks in with a ppg average of 14.7.  Vermont is averaging over 75 points per game, so this game will clearly be a clash of styles.  

The Retrievers handed the Catamounts their only conference loss this season back on January 23rd in Burlington, 74-61.  It was UMBC’s second straight win over Vermont after having lost the previous 23 match-ups. 

Tip-off tomorrow is scheduled for 7:00 pm, and the game will be broadcast on ESPNU.

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Tom Martin

Husband, father of three. Baltimore born and raised. UMBC '94. Follow me on Twitter -- @martymar1970

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