THE GAME: Loyola enters today looking for its first win since January 30, having lost seven straight. Iona comes in having dropped three straight, four of five with the lone win being over the Greyhounds, and seven of nine.
THE COACHES: Loyola head coach Jimmy Patsos enters his fifth season and has registered a 69-81 (.460) career record. The victory at Marist moved him into fifth place all-time in wins at Loyola and Thursday he coached his 150th career game at Loyola, fourth all-time in Greyhounds coaching annals. The 1989 Catholic graduate is 4-5 against the Gaels. Iona head coach Kevin Willard is in his second season with the Gaels and sports a 24-37 (.393) career record. The 1997 Pittsburgh graduate is 2-1 against the Greyhounds.
THE TEAMS: There are no common opponents outside of conference foes that appear on the schedules of both teams.
THE SERIES: Iona leads the series, 37-10, and the Gaels have captured two of the last three after the Greyhounds swept the series in 2006-07. Earlier this month, Iona scored 25 straight points to take a 62-40 lead and coast to a 77-65 win in Baltimore. Sophomore guard Jamal Barney led all scorers with 19 points while junior guard Brett Harvey scored 12 and senior guard Marquis Sullivan added 13 off the bench.
THE PROGRAM: Loyola is playing its 99th recorded season of basketball this season. The first season was 1908-1909 and this year the College is celebrating the 100th anniversary of that first season. The Greyhounds have posted a 1125-1163 (.492) all-time record during the time.
LAST TIME OUT: Rider's Ryan Thompson traveled the length of the court and finger-rolled in a layup as the final horn sounded to lead the Broncs to a 77-75 comeback win Thursday night over Loyola. The Greyhounds held a 12-point lead with 14 minutes remaining before Rider ripped off 13 straight points to seize the lead. The lead would change hands five times and their would be four ties in the final 10 minutes with Loyola knotting the game for the last time on a layup from sophomore guard Brian Rudolph with 1:28 remaining. Rudolph had the last shot for Loyola, missing with four seconds left to lead into Thompson's mad dash to beat the buzzer. Rudolph scored a career-high 19 points with four assists and two steals and senior guard Marquis Sullivan ended his Reitz Arena career with a 17-point effort. Freshman forward Anthony Winbush also recorded a career-high with 12 points, six rebounds and two assists.
DEAD-EYE FROM THE FREE-THROW LINE: For the second time this season, the Greyhounds bettered the school record for free-throw shooting with their 14-14 effort Thursday against Rider. The mark entering the season was a nine-for-nine performance at Fairfield in February 2007. In December, Loyola made all 11 of its attempts against Siena to establish the record that was eclipsed Thursday night. The Greyhounds missed on their final attempt at Drexel in the game prior, finishing 18-19 to give Loyola a two-game aggregate of 32-33 (.970) in its last two outings. For the season, the Greyhounds are shooting at a 76.9 clip which sits seventh nationally in the rankings through Thursday's games. Junior guard Brett Harvey is third in the nation at 91.1 percent, one of five players to be above 90 percent at this point in the season.
RUDOLPH RECORDS SCORING CAREER-HIGH: Sophomore guard Brian Rudolph recorded a career high when he scored 19 points Thursday against Rider. His previous high was a 15-point effort in the overtime win at Siena as a freshman. Thursday's outing was his ninth double-figure game this season and was his fourth in eight games. In his last five games, he is averaging 10.2 points while shooting 50 percent from the field (19-38) and 85.7 percent from the free-throw line (12-14) and handing out 18 assists.
REID REBOUNDS OFF THE GLASS: After grabbing just one rebound in his previous outing, sophomore forward Isaac Reid matched his career-high with 14 caroms collected on Thursday. He added nine points, just missing his second career double-double. The 14 boards marked the fifth time this season he has grabbed more than 10 to match the number of times he has scored more than 10.
WINBUSH SHOWS OFFENSIVE GAME: Much acknowledged for his defensive presence which has earned him 16 starts thus far this season, freshman forward Anthony Winbush showed offensive aspect to his game Thursday night against Rider. Having scored just 10 points in his previous eight games, he connected on five of his seven field-goal attempts for his first double-figure scoring game and a career-high 12 points. He also added six rebounds and two assists during his 25 minutes off the bench. The six boards were his most since grabbing that many in the road win at Rider.
SULLIVAN TOPS ANOTHER CAREER CHART: Senior guard Marquis Sullivan moved to the top of another career list at Drexel when he played in his 116th career game to become the school's all-time leader in that category. He already tops the charts in three-point field goals made (274) and attempted (668). He finished his Reitz Arena career with a 17-point effort and now has 1,217 career points, good for 19th all-time. He has scored 10 or more points in five of his last six games, averaging 11.7 points while making 45.3 percent of his shots (24-53).
WRIGHT PROVIDING CONSISTENCY: Junior forward Jawaan Wright has provided some consistent numbers for the Greyhounds in the last eight games. He has scored 42 points while grabbing 46 rebounds in that span. During that stretch, he corralled a career-high 11 rebounds in the win at Rider and scored eight points in the game against Canisius. He has averaged 6.7 points and 6.0 rebounds in the last three games.
SPREADING THE SCORING: Although sophomore guard Jamal Barney has taken much of the scoring load of late, through 30 games six different players have posted team-high scoring honors thus far. Barney has led the team 20 times, senior guard Marquis Sullivan four times, junior guard Brett Harvey three times, sophomore Brian Rudolph twice and sophomores Tony Lewis and Isaac Reid (shared) have each done so once. Last season, only four Greyhounds posted a team high through 33 games - Gerald Brown (19 times), Sullivan (seven), Michael Tuck (five) and Harvey (twice).
STARTING LINEUP SUMMARY: Last season, the Greyhounds used 10 different starting lineups and 11 of 13 players received at least one starting nod during the campaign. Thus far this season, 12 different lineups have been used with 11 of 13 players starting. The only two Greyhounds who have not received starts thus far this season are junior walk-on Garrett Kelly and freshman guard J'hared Hall.
NEXT TIME OUT: The regular season concluded, Loyola will be in action in one of the MAAC Championship First Round games being played Friday night at the Times Union Center in Albany, N.Y. Which seed the Greyhounds are given depends on the result of this afternoon's game coupled with the result of the Manhattan-Saint Peter's game which is taking place concurrently with the Loyola game.