Off to the program’s best-ever Division I start at 13-4, the Hofstra Men’s Basketball team will take its unblemished 4-0 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) mark north to Boston on Wednesday when the Pride face Northeastern at 7 p.m.
Hofstra’s 13-4 overall record is tied with the 2005-06, 2000-01 and 1982-83 squads for the program’s best-ever Division I start (since 1972-73).
The road has been kind to the Pride this season as Hofstra currently leads the nation with seven road victories, including three already in CAA play.
The Pride and the Huskies will tip-off at 7 p.m. from historic Matthews Arena. Pride Productions will have live video/audio coverage, with the video feed courtesy of Northeastern. The audio only broadcast, featuring Dan Savarino, Mark Weiner and Andrew Fertitta, will also be available on WRHU (88.7 FM), with the pregame show beginning at 6:45 p.m.
Hofstra (13-4, 4-0 CAA) just completed a four-games in eight-day stretch in perfect fashion to extend its win streak to six games. The overall win streak is now at six games, the longest since a seven-game streak in 2010. The Pride’s 4-0 conference start is the best since 2010-11 (5-0).
The win streak reached six with a convincing 79-61 victory over Elon on Saturday. Hofstra placed four player in double figures led by 25 points from junior forward Ameen Tanksley. He sank five three-pointers to tie sophomore guard Brian Bernardi for team-high honors. They didn’t do it alone, though, as graduate guard Dion Nesmith had his first career points/rebounds double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds, while junior guard Juan’ya Green added 14 points, seven rebounds, six assists and three steals.
One of the nation’s top three-point shooting teams, the Pride is shooting nearly 40% from beyond the arch in 2014-15 as sophomore guard Brian Bernardi has drained a team-best 53 three-pointers with Tanksley following closely behind with 49. Both are shooting over 47% from long range.
Hofstra recently got back a pair of its post players from injury and that has clearly played a role in the Pride’s strong play as of late. Senior center Moussa Kone came back right before the New Year and is averaging 6.1 points and 4.2 rebounds in nine games this season. Freshman forward Rokas Gustys made his return to the court with the start of CAA play and his strong rebounding presence has allowed the talented newcomer to average 7.9 caroms per game, while also chipping in with 4.7 points per game.
Tanksley has been a tremendous addition to the lineup this year and his 19.1 points per outing leads the entire team. He is also second with 5.9 rebounds per game.
Longtime rivals, Hofstra and Northeastern will be meeting for the 36th time on Wednesday. A very close series, the Huskies hold a narrow 18-17 lead in the all-time meetings which started in 1949-50. Northeastern won the first-ever meeting, 55-53, and has captured the last six meetings in the series. Hofstra’s last wins in the series came during the 2010-11 campaign when the Pride swept the season series. Hofstra Coach Joe Mihalich is 0-2 all-time against the Huskies.
Northeastern is 11-5 overall and 3-1 in CAA action. The Huskies have won two straight, including a 52-49 victory over Towson on Saturday afternoon. In that game, Scott Eatherton was a perfect 10-10 from the field en route to 21 points to lead the way.
Eatherton leads Northeastern in scoring at 15.4 per game, while also ranking first on the team with 7.4 rebounds per outing. David Walker and Quincy Ford join Eatherton in double figures with 10.9 and 10.6 points, respectively. Walker is first on the team with 48 assists as well.
The Huskies earned a pair of impressive non-conference wins as they defeated Florida State in November and defeated Richmond on New Year’s Eve in their final non-conference game of the season.
The game at Northeastern marks the end of an incredibly difficult stretch for the Pride as Hofstra will start a three-game home stand on Saturday when UNCW visits for a 2 p.m. contest. From December 7-January 14, Hofstra will have played 11 games with nine of them away from the David S. Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex. Despite the multitude of unfamiliar locations and arena, the Pride have managed an 8-2 record so far during that stretch (not including Northeastern game) to keep their strong season going.
For ticket information to all Hofstra home games visit the brand-new HofstraTickets.com or call the Hofstra Athletics Box Office at (516) HOF-TIXX.
For more information on the Hofstra Men’s Basketball team fans are encouraged to click on the link seen here: