Sacred Heart men’s basketball returns to the court for the first time in 2021 to continue their conference season in Massachusetts against Merrimack.
WHERE: Hammel Court, North Andover, MA.
WHEN: 7 p.m. Thursday, 4 p.m. Friday
HOW TO WATCH: NEC Front Row (Thursday & Friday)
Sacred Heart leads the all-time series against the Warriors 13-5, but dropped both meetings last season as Merrimack played its first season at a Division I level last season. The Warriors defeated the Pioneers 65-57 on Jan. 2 and 64-57 on Feb. 21.
CLAMPED ON OFFENSE:
Last season, Sacred Heart averaged 57 points per game in their two meetings against Merrimack, the second-lowest scoring average against any team in the Northeast Conference. The Pioneers also committed 39 turnovers in the two losses as well. Sacred Heart averaged 73 points per game last season.
LAST TIME OUT:
Prior to their two week holiday break, Sacred Heart split their two meetings with Wagner in Staten Island. After dropping the first game against Wagner 74-46, the Pioneers bounced back with an 86-85 victory in double overtime to earn a split. Through its first four conference games, Sacred Heart is 2-2, winning the second game of each series.
“CULTURE HAS NEVER BEEN BETTER”
Throughout the season, Sacred Heart head coach Anthony Latina has expressed how proud he is of this season’s team specifically amidst the stoppages and countless newcomers to this year’s squad.
“These guys show toughness, they stay together, they are team-first guys. This is as likable a group as you’re going to have,” said Latina.
LEADERS MAKE BIG PLAYS
In their double overtime victory against Wagner, the leaders of Sacred Heart came up big when it mattered. Sophomore Tyler Thomas, who currently leads the team in scoring (15.3 PPG), scored a career-high 27 points in the victory. However, the game does not reach double overtime without a clutch, game-tying three pointer by senior Alex Watson to knot the game at 75.