Dartmouth Ready to Play at St. John's on FOX Sports 1
The Game: Dartmouth (7-7) at St. John’s (9-8)
Location: Carnesecca Arena (5,602), Queens, N.Y.
Tipoff: Saturday, January 18 at 6 p.m.
Series Record vs. Hartford: Big Green lead 94-82
Television - FOX Sports 1 (Jason Kutcher, play-by-play; Jim Spanarkel, analyst)
Live Audio (free) - Big Green Insider on the Ivy League Digital Network (Dave Collins, play-by-play)
Complete Game Notes
Final Non-Conference Game
• Dartmouth wraps up its games outside of the Ivy League with a game on national television (FOX Sports 1) at St. John’s of the Big East.
• The Big Green are assured of at least breaking even against non-conference teams for the first time since the 2007-08 team went 7-7.
• The last time the Big Green took on a current Big East team came against Providence in the 2010-11 season opener, head coach Paul Cormier’s first game back at Dartmouth. The following year, the Green played at Rutgers and Notre Dame, both of which were members of the Big East at the time.
• Since finishing the 2013 calendar year among the top 20 nationally in field goal percentage (.502), Dartmouth has struggled shooting the ball, hitting just 37.2 percent of its shots in three games.
• Last time out, the Big Green were tied with Harvard early in the second half, but fell to the host Crimson, 61-45, the lowest point total for Dartmouth all season.
• Junior center Gabas Maldunas, whose 23 points at Harvard made him the first Big Green player to top 20 points in a game this season, leads Dartmouth in scoring (11.6 ppg) and the Ivy League in rebounding (8.5 rpg).
• Also scoring in double figures are sophomores Connor Boehm (11.0) and Alex Mitola (10.6).
• Head coach Paul Cormier is taking his fourth crack at winning the 200th game of his career between his stint at Fairfield and two at Dartmouth.
Series vs. St. John’s
• Dartmouth is 3-9 all-time against the Red Storm in a series that began nearly a century ago with a 24-21 Big Green victory on Jan. 4, 1916.
• St. John’s has won each of the last eight meetings. The last Dartmouth win came six days after Pearl Harbor was bombed.
• The only games in the series decided by fewer than 10 points both came before 1920.
• This is the first time has coached a team against the Red Storm.
Scouting the Red Storm
• Since winning nine of its first 12 games, St. John’s has dropped five straight, all of which were Big East games, including an excruciating 84-83 double-overtime loss to Providence on Thursday.
• The Red Storm’s last victory came against another Ivy League member, Columbia, in the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, 65-59.
• Guard D’Angelo Harrison is one of the Big East’s premier players, averaging 18.8 points and 4.1 rebounds, but is shooting under 40 percent.
• St. John’s has a trio of 6-9 forwards to battle on the boards, including JaKarr Sampson who leads the team at 6.6 rebounds per game while averaging 11.9 points as well.
• No team in the country has blocked more shots than the Red Storm (8.7 per game) with Chris Obekpa second nationally at 4.1 per outing.
• Those blocked shots have helpd St. John’s limit opponents to 40 percent shooting.
• Sampson led the Red Storm against Providence with 16 points and eight boards, while Phil Greene IV scored 15 in 38 minutes off the bench.
• Steve Lavin (Chapman ’88) is 60-54 in this his fourth season with the Red Storm. He also spent seven years with the UCLA Bruins, going 145-78 while taking them to six NCAA Tournaments and five Sweet 16s.
Cormier on the Cusp of 200
picked up the 199th victory of his collegiate head coaching career when Dartmouth dumped Lesley on Dec. 31, 85-47. Of those 199 wins, 113 have come at Dartmouth, 87 of which came during his first stint (1984-91). He procured the other 86 over his seven years at the helm of Fairfield (1991-98). Only three coaches have more victories at Dartmouth — Alvin “Doggie” Julian (183 wins, 1950-66), Osborne Cowles (144, 1936-43 and ’44-46) and Dave Faucher (136, 1991-2004).
Maldunas Shines at Harvard
Although Dartmouth recorded a season-low 45 points at Harvard on Jan. 11, junior didn’t have a problem putting the ball in the basket with more than half (23) of the Big Green’s points. The center connected on 9-of-13 field goals and 5-of-6 free throws to become the first Dartmouth player to top 20 points in a game this season. It was his fourth career 20-point game (no one else has more than two); his career high came against Cornell in the penultimate game of the 2012-13 season with 28 points.
Dartmouth may have ended up on the wrong end of the 61-45 game at Harvard, but it continued to rebound well, grabbing 32 of the 57 available rebounds. The Big Green entered the week 20th in the nation with a plus-7.4 rebound margin, while center leads the Ivy League with 8.5 boards per game. He also is currently leading the country in defensive rebound percentage (.323).
Boehm Lends a Hand or Five
The spirit of Christmas hit a little this holiday season, as the sophomore was in a charitable mood against Hartford. Boehm handed out a career-high five assists in the loss to the Hawks after recording eight in the first 12 games.
What a Difference a Year Makes
As in the calendar year. Prior to the clock striking midnight on 2013, Dartmouth was enjoying its finest start to a season in 17 years with a 7-4 mark. The Big Green were shooting better than 50 percent, had won five of six home games and grabbed nearly 37 rebounds per game.
But in the three games in 2014 thus far, Dartmouth has struggled. Its scoring average is down about 24 points, the team field goal percentage is .372 (not to mention the .186 three-point percentage), and the Green have hauled in just 28.3 rpg.
Block Party Closes
Although center failed to block a shot against Hartford, he did swat a whopping 23 shots during the five-game stretch from Dec. 14 to Jan. 4, including a career-high seven in a 20-point win over Longwood. The last Dartmouth player with seven blocks in a game? Calvin Arnold against Stony Brook on Jan. 10, 2006. In the other nine games thus far, Maldunas has just five blocks.
Mitola Approaching 100 Threes
Sophomore point guard is among the Ivy League leaders in three-point field goal percentage (.400, 6th (min. 2 per game)) and three-pointers per game (2.3, 4th), and he is fast approaching 100 triples in just his second season in Hanover. He needs just three more to become the 15th player in Big Green history to reach the milestone, and at his current pace, he will break the career record held by Jim Barton ’89, who had 242.
Must Be a Tractor Boehm
Sophomore has been spot on when shooting this season, clipping the nets at a 58.4 percent rate, which leads the Ivy League. He is currently one of just nine players in Dartmouth history to own a career 50.0 field goal percentage or better having made at least 140 field goals. In 10 of the 14 games this year, Boehm has knocked down at least half of his shots, including a perfect 6-of-6 in the season opener and 7-of-11 field goals at Illinois in scoring a season-high 17 points.