The Stetson men's basketball team (10-13, 7-5) returns to action on Saturday, hosting ETSU (7-18, 5-7) at the Edmunds Center at 3:15 p.m. The Hatters, now tied for third in the Atlantic Sun, will attempt to sweep the Buccaneers in the season series after winning 72-70 earlier in the year in Johnson City.
"It's important that we build on the momentum gained from our win against Upstate," Stetson head coach Casey Alexander said, referencing the Hatters' 73-66 victory on Thursday night. "As ugly as it was, it's important that our guys recognize you don't have to play perfectly to win."
Stetson didn't play perfectly in their 10th victory of the season, the most for the Hatters since 2008-09, but solid defense and shooting prevailed, as SU shot 50.0 percent from the floor and held the Spartans to just 38.0 percent shooting.
With nearly every team in the conference battling for position at the conference tournament in March, the Hatters can't rest on the fact that they defeated ETSU on the road just about a month ago. The Bucs have gone 4-5 since then, picking up wins against FGCU, UNF, Lipscomb, and Kennesaw State.
"ETSU is a completely different team than the one we faced in early January," Alexander said. "At that point they were having real difficulty making shots and scoring points. Well, we turned that around for them, and since then they've turned into one of the most efficient offenses in the league."
The Bucs will likely come into DeLand hungry, just two games back of third place in the league at 5-7, but also having just been beaten down by Florida Gulf Coast 67-43 on Thursday. "We learned first-hand what can happen when you play at FGCU," Alexander said of ETSU's struggles on Thursday. "I expect the Bucs will show up here tomorrow with a renewed sense of purpose."
Saturday's contest can be watched on HatterVision and ASun.TV, and can be heard on WSBB 1230 AM, 1490 AM, and MyAM1230.com. Robbie Aaron and Ryan Rouse will be on the call. Live Stats, the @StetsonMBB Twitter feed, and Hat-Alerts will also be available for in-game updates.