Jan. 21, 2014
Game Notes in PDF
Northern Illinois Huskies (7-9, 1-3 MAC) at Toledo Rockets (15-2, 3-1 MAC)
Date / Time: Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014 / 6 p.m. CT (7 p.m. ET)
Site: Savage Arena • Toledo, Ohio
Radio: WLBK 1360-AM, 98.9-FM in DeKalb, Ill. • WJOL 1340-AM in Joliet, Ill. • WRMN 1410-AM in Elgin, Ill. • NIUTube (NIUHuskies.com)
Live Video: mac-sports.com
Live Stats: UTRockets.com
Twitter Updates: @NIUscores
All-time Series: Toledo leads 41-23
Last Meeting: March 5, 2013 • Toledo, 70-46
• NIU is playing its first game of the season against a MAC West foe. The Huskies opened conference play with four games against MAC East schools.
• The Huskies rank 48th in the country in scoring defense, allowing just 64.6 points per game, in contrast, Toledo is 12th in the country in scoring offense at 83.6 points per contest.
• NIU ranks 45th nationally in rebounding margin, outrebounding its opponents by an average of 5.4 boards per contest.
• Senior Aksel Bolin is closing in on 100 career games played. Bolin has appeared in 99 games in his Huskie career, including 82 consecutive appearances. Bolin is averaging 7.3 points and 4.5 rebounds per game during league play.
• Travon Baker is averaging 10.3 points per game over the last eight contests. Baker has scored in double figures seven times this season, including in three-straight games.
• Aaron Armstead has scored in double figures in each of the last two contests and is averaging 9.6 points per game in the last five. Armstead is also shooting 80.5 percent from the free-throw line this season, ninth-best in the MAC.
• In the last five games since returning to the starting lineup for an injured Dontel Highsmith, Aaric Armstead has averaged 8.2 points per game, while playing 28.2 minutes per contest.
• Kevin Gray made his first start of the season last time out against Ohio. Gray scored a season-high four points and grabbed a season-best five rebounds in 22 minutes.
• Darrell Bowie has scored in double figures seven times this season; he is also averaging 7.0 rebounds per game, ninth-best in the MAC.
• The Huskies have lost 25 man games due to injury this season, not including redshirts, and are currently dressing just eight scholarship players.
• Leading scorer Dontel Highsmith will miss the remainder of the 2013-14 season after tearing his ACL at Iowa State (Dec. 31).
• The Rockets have a 15-2 record, 3-1 in Mid-American Conference play. Toledo is a perfect 8-0 at home this season.
• Five players are scoring in double figures for Toledo, led by 14.9 points per game from Rian Pearson. Julius Brown (14.1 ppg), Justin Drummond (13.8 ppg), J.D. Weatherspoon (11.8 ppg) and Nathan Boothe (10.3 ppg) are also scoring in double figures for the Rockets.
• Julius Brown is the reigning MAC West Player of the Week after averaging 22.5 points and 3.5 assists per game last week in wins over Buffalo and Akron.
• Toledo is the highest-scoring team in the MAC, averaging 83.6 points per game, 9.2 points more than second-place Central Michigan (74.4).
THE LAST MEETING
• Toledo defeated NIU, 70-46, on March 5, 2013, at Savage Arena. Aksel Bolin scored 14 points to lead the Huskies.
• The Rockets hit 10 triples in the contest and had three scorers in double figures, led by 16 from Matt Smith; Smith also had five blocks
• Toledo held NIU to just 29.8 percent (14-of-47) shooting in the contest.
THE ALL-TIME SERIES
• Toledo leads the all-time series against NIU, 41-23; the Rockets won each of last season’s two meetings, 69-64 on Feb. 2, 2013 in DeKalb and 70-46 on March 5, 2013, in Toledo.
• NIU’s last victory over Toledo was a 65-61 win in DeKalb on Feb. 29, 2012; the Huskies have won 6 of the last 10 overall meetings
• The Rockets hold a 26-7 advantage all-time in games played in Toledo. NIU’s last victory in Toledo was a 75-70 overtime victory on Feb. 26, 2011.
LAST TIME OUT
• NIU led Ohio, 24-23, at halftime, but the Bobcats shot 51.7 percent in the second half, and made seven triples, as Ohio defeated the Huskies, 65-46.
• Aaron Armstead and Travon Baker each scored 12 points to lead the Huskies; Baker also had four assists.
• Nick Kellogg scored a game-high 16 points, including 4-of-5 from three-point range, to pace the Bobcats.
COMING ALIVE IN LEAGUE PLAY
• Travon Baker scored in double figures four times during non-conference play but has reached double figures three times in four conference contests. Baker is averaging 10.3 points per game in league play; he averaged 7.7 per game in the non-conference slate.
• Baker has gotten to the free-throw line 21 times in four league games; he attempted 27 free throws in 12 non-conference games.
• Baker has seven steals in conference action after registering 12 in non-league play, Baker averaged 1.4 steals per game last season, 10th-best in the MAC.
• Aaron Armstead has scored in double figures in each of the last two league games and is averaging 9.5 points per game in conference action. Armstead scored 7.0 points per contest in non-league play.
• Aaron Armstead has pulled down 5.3 rebounds per game in the MAC after grabbing just 2.2 rebounds in the non-conference.
• Aksel Bolin is quietly producing more since the beginning of conference play. Bolin is averaging 7.3 points per game, and shooting 40 percent from three-point range, after averaging just 4.5 points, and shooting just 21.1 percent from three, in pre-conference action.