Conference play starts for Portland St., Idaho State

Portland State (2-3, 0-0) vs. Idaho State (1-5, 0-0)

Reed Gym, Pocatello, Idaho; Thursday, 9 p.m. EST

BOTTOM LINE: Portland State and Idaho State meet in the first conference game of the season for both teams. In conference play last season, Portland State finished with six wins and eight losses, while Idaho State won eight games and lost six.

SAVVY SENIORS: Portland State’s James Jean-Marie, Khalid Thomas and Ezekiel Alley have collectively accounted for 40 percent of all Vikings scoring this season.NIFTY FORD III: Robert Ford III has connected on 40 percent of the 35 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 8 of 18 over his last three games. He’s also converted 88.2 percent of his free throws this season.

ASSIST-TO-FG RATIO: The Bengals have recently converted buckets via assists more often than the Vikings. Idaho State has an assist on 27 of 52 field goals (51.9 percent) over its past three contests while Portland State has assists on 40 of 84 field goals (47.6 percent) during its past three games.

PACE OF PLAY: The upbeat Portland State offense has averaged 76 possessions per game, the 18th-most in Division I. Idaho State has not been as uptempo as the Vikings and is averaging only 64.4 possessions per game (ranked 329th, nationally).


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