Fairfield (6-15, 6-10) vs. Monmouth (10-7, 10-6)
OceanFirst Bank Center, West Long Branch, New Jersey; Friday, 5 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: Two senior guards will be on display as Taj Benning and Fairfield will go up against Deion Hammond and Monmouth. Benning is averaging 13 points over the last five games. Hammond has scored 22 percent of the team’s points this season and is averaging 15.4 over his last five games.
SAVVY VETERANS: Senior leadership has been on display for both teams this year. Hammond, Melik Martin, George Papas and Marcus McClary have combined to account for 62 percent of Monmouth’s scoring this season. For Fairfield, Benning, Jake Wojcik, Jesus Cruz and Caleb Green have collectively accounted for 61 percent of all Fairfield scoring, including 69 percent of the team’s points over its last five games.TERRIFIC TAJ: Benning has connected on 34.8 percent of the 89 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 7 of 21 over the last five games. He’s also made 83.3 percent of his free throws this season.
PERFECT WHEN: Monmouth is a perfect 9-0 when its defense holds opponents to a field goal percentage of 41.8 percent or less. The Hawks are 1-7 when allowing opponents to shoot any better than that.
STREAK STATS: Monmouth has won its last six home games, scoring an average of 82.5 points while giving up 67.3.
GET OUT AND RUN: The quick-tempoed Monmouth offense has averaged 75.8 possessions per game this season, ranking the Hawks sixth nationally. Fairfield has operated at a steadier pace and is averaging only 65.4 possessions per game (ranked 323rd).
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