PREVIEW: Men’s basketball looks to complete season sweep against St. Vincent

Jackets aiming to snap six-game skid

It was a hard-fought battle when Waynesburg (4-9, 4-18) and St. Vincent (6-7, 11-11) played in Latrobe. The Jackets came out on top 73-68 in overtime, ending their six-game losing streak against the Bearcats. Waynesburg looks to end a six-game losing streak on the season on Saturday.

Coach Tim Fusina said that St. Vincent can attack its opponents in different ways.

“They’re going to try and drive it. They’re going to try and shoot from the perimeter,” Fusina said. “They have a good post player in Shemar Bennett who’s athletic and strong. St. Vincent is a good driving team. We’re going to have to guard the ball, keep it out of the paint and off the baseline hopefully we can do that.”

St. Vincent has won two games in a row. Before that, they were on a six-game losing streak. Senior guard Frank Bozicevic had 20 points in the teams win at Latrobe. He knows what his team must do to come away with another win.

“We have to keep the energy up because I know that we took one from them and they’re going to want it back,” Bozicevic said. “We’re going to have to guard the ball. We know they have some really quick athletic guards that can drive.”

In the first game, Waynesburg went on a 18-2 run in the first half and St. Vincent came back to only trail by two points at halftime. Then, Waynesburg led by 17 points in the second half and St. Vincent forced overtime.

Beating Bennett

Bozicevic also said containing Bennett like they did the last time the teams played will be key. Bennett only scored six points against Waynebsurg, which is almost nine fewer than his season average of 14.7 and he averages 14.7 points a game.

“Last time we were doubling him a lot and making him try and kick it out, and put the ball on the floor,” Bozicevic said. “I think that’s the same goal we have coming into tomorrow.”

Keeping the ball out of the paint

Another key to the game will be if Waynesburg can keep St. Vincent from scoring in the paint. St. Vincent scored 32 points in the paint in the last time against Waynesburg.

“They’re really good at driving and getting in the paint,” Bozicevic said. “It’s being able to contain them whenever they put the ball on the floor because they are really dangerous whenever they get inside the paint.

Putting the streak to bed.

 Bozicevic knows they must be themselves to win and end their losing streak.

“I think it’s just playing hard and getting back to how we started off that little win streak is believing that we can do it,” he said. “Sticking to our roots of playing good defense. We got to be the aggressor and we know we have the talent to do that.”

It’s senior day at the Rudy Marisa Fieldhouse, and it would mean a lot to Bozicevic and the seniors to punctuate the occasion with a win. 

“I think senior night is a little elevated now that we are playing St. Vincent. Just knowing throughout our four years, we’ve haven’t had any success against them until this year,” Bozicevic said. “It’s going to be a really hyped game without being senior night. I think we’re really looking forward to it.” 

Tipoff is at 3:30