American travels to Colgate on Saturday for a rematch of last season’s Patriot League final which the Eagles won to earn their first trip to the NCAA tournament. Tipoff is 2 p.m. This Raiders team, however, is much different than the one AU (10-6, 2-0) faced a year ago.
Six players from that squad graduated and Colgate’s top returning scorer, Kyle Roemer (16.3 ppg), went down for the season with a torn ligament in September, leaving the Raiders short on experience. With five freshmen and three sophomores on the roster, Colgate (5-10, 1-1) has struggled.
The Raiders come into the game road weary, having just concluded an eight-game road trip, during which they went 5-3, including a split of their first two Patriot League games. They won at Army, 64-42, but lost at Lafayette, 69-62. Though undoubtedly pleased to be returning home, Colgate hasn’t fared well there. The Raiders, who are playing at Cotterell Court for the first time since Dec. 6, haven’t won a home game this season. They are 0-4 at home.
With no player reaching double figures in scoring average – sophomore guard Mike Venezia comes close at 9.9 points per game – Colgate has trouble putting points on the scoreboard. The Raiders haven’t scored 70 points in a game this season and are averaging 56.1 per game.
American, which has won 12 of its last 13 against Colgate, should have no trouble maintaining its top position in the Patriot League standings.
January 16, 2009; 6:10 AM ET
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