Dores face Ivy League member Penn Monday

Dec. 21, 2014

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The Commodores take on Penn on Monday night at Memorial Gym at 7 p.m. in their last game before the holiday break. The game will be televised on SEC Network Plus, and can be heard on the Vanderbilt IMG College Radio Network throughout Middle Tennessee.

Vanderbilt dropped its last time out in their first true road game of the season at Georgia Tech, 66-60. Senior Josh Henderson and sophomore Damian Jones led the Commodores with 12 points apiece, while Riley LaChance added 10 points. The 12-point game, on 5-5 shooting, from Henderson was a season-high for the 6’11 senior. The Commodores led, 33-25, at the half, but the Yellow Jackets converted on 51.6% of its chances from the floor in the second half and for the game, Georgia Tech outrebounded Vanderbilt, 39-30, overall and 20-8 on the offensive glass. Georgia Tech outscored the Commodores, 16-9 on second-chance points and in points off of turnovers (18-6). Vanderbilt held Georgia Tech to only 38.8% from the floor and 18.2% from three in the game.

Wear An Ugly Sweater, Get in for $10
The Commodores are celebrating the holiday season with their Ugly Sweater Night, which allows fans to get into Tuesday night’s contest wearing a gaudy Christmas sweater.

Game 11/Vanderbilt (7-3) vs. Penn (3-5)
Nashville, Tenn. – Memorial Gym – 7 p.m. CT
TV: SEC Network Plus
TV Talent: Kevin Ingram (pxp), Ross Neltner (analyst)
Radio: Vanderbilt Radio Network from IMG College,
Radio Talent: Joe Fisher (pxp), Tim Thompson (analyst)
Live Stats:
Twitter Updates: @VandyMBB

Series Information
Series Record: Vanderbilt leads the all-time series, 2-1.
Last Meeting: Vanderbilt win, 71-70, on 12/13/1986.
Record at Vanderbilt: VU leads, 1-0.
Record at Penn: Tied at 1.
Record at Neutral Site: NA.
Coach Stallings vs. Penn: Coach Stallings has never faced Penn.

About Penn
Ivy League member Penn enters the game with a 3-5 overall record and have not played since December 9 because of final exams. The Quakers are led by Tony Hicks, who averages 14.6 points per game. Darien Nelson-Henry also averages double figures (10.4) Two of the three previous games in this series have been played at the Palestra in Philadelphia, the Quakers’ home court, with Penn’s only meeting in Nashville coming on December 14, 1985 at Memorial Gym. The combined age of the Quakers’ home floor, the Palestra (88), and Memorial Gym (63) is a whopping 151 years old.

Vying for 300
Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings is going for career win number 300 as the head coach of the Commodores. Stallings, the school’s all-time winningest coach, is in his 16th season with the Commodores and 21st overall as a head coach. Stallings has 299 career wins at Vanderbilt and 422 overall as a head coach. He has seven 20-win seasons in the last 10 seasons, with six NCAA tournament appearances and two Sweet 16’s (2004 and 2007). Against Tennessee State earlier this year, he won his 200th career game at Memorial Gym.

LaChance remains hot from the field
Freshman Riley LaChance poured in a career-high 26 points in Vanderbilt’s win over Purdue on Saturday and claimed SEC Freshman of the Week honors for his performance, and then followed with another 26-point game against Western Carolina. It was the most points scored by a Commodore freshman since A.J. Ogilvy scored 27 points on March 13, 2008, in a first-round game of the SEC Tournament in Atlanta, and the first time first a Commodore has scored 25 or more points in consecutive games since John Jenkins scored 26 at Ole Miss (2/16/12) and 28 at Georgia (2/19/12). LaChance is the leading freshman scorer in the SEC at 13.2 points per game and leads all SEC freshmen in three’s made per contest at 2.1 per game, which is fourth in the conference overall.

Damian Jones leads Commodores
Sophomore post player Damian Jones is off to a great start to his sophomore campaign, averaging 16.7 points and 7.2 rebounds per game in eight early contests. Jones, a preseason All-SEC First Team selection by the league’s coaches, has scored 20+ points in four games this year and is first in the SEC in field goal percentage (.584), fifth in the SEC in scoring, 4th in rebounding, 5th in blocks (1.7), and 6th in defensive rebounding (4.7/game).

Vanderbilt among SEC leaders
The Commodores lead the SEC in FG% with 50.5%. VU is 3rd in assists (16.6) and 2nd in 3-Pt FG% (.392).

Assists Numbers
Vanderbilt has 166 assists against only 133 turnovers early in the 2014-15 season, and has two players in the top five in the SEC in assists, with Wade Baldwin IV second (5.0) and Shelton Mitchell fifth (4.6). Vanderbilt is third in the league in assists (16.6/game). The Commodores have 166 assists on 251 made baskets, a 66.1% clip, the best in the SEC.

Assist to Turnovers
The Commodores are on track to post their first positive assist-to-turnover ratio in a season since the 2010-11 season (454 assists, 441 turnovers that year).

Free Throws Galore
The Commodores made 38 of 43 free throws against Western Carolina, and was 22-22 at the charity stripe in the second half. It was the most made free throws in a game since Vanderbilt tied a school record with 40 against Kentucky on February 20, 1991.

Baldwin Off To Fast Start
Guard Wade Baldwin IV won his first SEC Freshman of the Week honor for his performance in wins over Lipscomb and Tenn. State. The 6’3 guard from Belle Mead, N.J., averaged 9.5 points, 7.5 assists, 6.0 rebounds, and 1.5 steals in the two Vanderbilt wins. He also posted 10 assists in the win over TSU. Baldwin is 3rd in the SEC in assists (5.0) and 4th in A/TO ratio (2.8).

SEC’s Youngest Backcourt
The Commodores’ freshman backcourt is the youngest in the SEC. In fact, Vanderbilt is the only school in the league to start three freshmen at the three guard spots.

Luke Kornet: En Fuego
7’0 sophomore forward Luke Kornet had a career-high vs. Lipscomb, posting a career-high 24 points on 10-11 shooting from the floor, and is shooting 48.4% (15-31) from three on the year.

Siakam Coming On
Senior forward James Siakam has started to come on as of late, averaging 12.0 points and 5.3 rebounds in the last seven games coming off the bench. For the season, the Douala, Cameroon, native is averaging 9.7 points and 5.0 rebounds per game, and is converting on 65.2% of his shots from the floor. He scored 20 points and had seven rebounds in his last game against Western Carolina.

Three-Point Streak Still Intact
Vanderbilt has made a 3-pointer in 906 consecutive games, a streak which began at the inception of the 3-point line in 1986-87. The Commodores rank second only to UNLV for the longest streak in Division I basketball. Vanderbilt, UNLV and Princeton are the only three schools in college basketball to have made at least one 3-pointer in every game played since the 3-point line was implemented.

Frontcourt Height
Vanderbilt’s starting frontline of 7-0, 6-10 & 6-6 is the second tallest in the SEC in terms of average height. Kentucky – 82.3 inches; Vanderbilt – 81.3 inches; LSU – 81.3 inches

Commodores vs. the Ivy League
Vanderbilt has a 18-5 all-time record against the Ivy League. The Commodores will also play fellow Ivy League member Yale on January 3.