Opponent: Incarnate Word
Current Record: 4-5
Tip: 7:00 PM
Where: Barclays Center – Brooklyn, NY
About the Opponent
Previous Game: Win @ St. John’s, 73-51
Last Season’s Record (Overall/Conference): 18-11/10-8
KenPom Rank: 156
Meeting History: First all-time meeting
High Scorer: Jontrell Walker, Guard, So., 16.9 ppg
High Rebounder: Shawn Johnson, Guard, So., 6.7 rpg
High Assist man: Mitchell Badillo, Guard, Sr., 5.1 apg
G – Jontrell Walker
G – Mitchell Badillo
G – Kyle Hittle
G – Shawn Johnson
F – Derail Green
G – Aakim Saintil
G – Martin Hermannsson
G – Joel Hernandez
F – Nura Zanna
F – Jerome Frink
Incarnate Word Scouting Report
Incarnate Word is LIU’s second straight Southland Conference opponent. UIW are in their third season in Division I after moving up from Division II. The Cardinals were picked to finish fifth out of thirteen teams in this preseason’s Southland Conference men’s basketball poll.
UIW are coming off their best win of the season thus far in winning at St. John’s on Friday night by a 73-51 score. The Cardinals are used to pulling off big upsets, last season they defeated Nebraska on the road by a point.
The Cardinals are 4-5 coming into this game against LIU. The win at St. John’s is their only victory against a Division I opponent this season. They also have a home loss to Our Lady of the Lake, an NAIA school from San Antonio.
UIW offense is pretty good and that is thanks to their three point shooting and their free throw shooting. They make 37% of their threes and are seventh in the nation in free throw shooting at 78.4%. They don’t like to turn the ball over as they have the fourth best turnover rate in the nation at 13.7%. They turnover the ball over under 12 times per game.
Where they are weak offensively is from inside the three-point arc in which they shoot just under 35% from two, which is dead last in the nation. They also get their shot blocked a whole lot. 20% of their shots are blocks which is also dead last in the nation. They also don’t get to a ton of offensive rebounds.
On defense, UIW are one of the best teams in the country in forcing turnovers. They force their opponents to turn the ball over on nearly a quarter of their possessions. Their steal rate in third best in the nation at 14.2%. But they have problems giving up two-point baskets. Division I opponents are hitting on over 61% of their two-point shots, that is second-worse in the nation. Also, they do give up plenty of second chance opportunities due to opponent’s getting 37.5% of their missed shots. So far, against all opposition, UIW have allowed 1.09 points per possession while scoring 0.99 points per possessions on offense.
They have four players averaging in double-figures led by sophomore guard Jontrell Walker who is averaging 16.9 ppg. Walker has missed on just one free throw in 42 attempts so far and hitting on 37% of his shots. He is coming off a 20-point game against St. John’s. Senior guard Kyle Hittle is UIW’s second-leading scorer, averaging 14.1 ppg. Hittle is a good shooter at 43% from the floor and 40% from three. He also grabs over five rebounds per game.
Senior point guard Mitchell Badillo (7.7 ppg/5.1 apg) likes to attack and can score near the rim. He is only shooting 18% from three. 6’4″ guard Shawn Johnson leads the team in rebounds at 6.7 rpg.
What to know about LIU from their last game
– LIU lost to Sam Houston State Friday night 75-69 dropping LIU to 5-4 on the season. LIU missed 12 of 29 free throws and committed 18 second half fouls which put SHSU to the free throw line 34 times in the second half.
– Aakim Saintil and Joel Hernandez led LIU with 16 points each. Saintil has scored in double-digits in all nine games played this season.
– Martin Hermannsson finished with a season-low five points and broke his streak of double-digit scoring games at eight.
– LIU has not won consecutive games since starting the season 3-0.
– Junior Joel Hernandez has scored 16 points in each of his last three home games. He is averaging 13 ppg at home and just 5.4 ppg on the road this season.
– LIU’s 0.887 points per possession vs SHSU was their lowest points per possession output of the season so far.
– Glenn Feidanga returns to play one minute vs Sam Houston State after missing the team’s previous two games due to illness. Freshman Julius van Sauers has missed the team’s last four games due to a high ankle sprain. He will likely be out until the beginning of January when NEC play begins.
KenPom Prediction: Incarnate Word, 77-74
Next Game: LIU Brooklyn @ UMass – Tuesday, December 29, 2015. The Blackbirds play their final game of 2015 and finish out their non-conference schedule against the UMass Minutemen on the road. Tip is scheduled for 7:00 pm.