Story contributed by Dennis R. Driscoll, McMurry Assistant Sports Information Director
ABILENE, Texas – The McMurry University men's basketball team looks to gain traction in the Heartland Conference standings with a pair of road games this weekend.
The War Hawks (7-5, 2-1) look to rebound after an 82-72 setback last Saturday against St. Edward's University. McM will get its first opportunity Thursday night at Texas A&M International University at 7:30 p.m.
The Dustdevils enter with an 11-3 overall mark and sit atop the conference standings with a 4-0 record. TAMIU is riding an 11-game win streak and haven't lost since Nov. 2 against No.2-nationally ranked Seattle Pacific University at the Disney Division II Tip-Off West Coast Classic in Anaheim.
The Dustdevils like to win dangerously. Since Heartland Conference play started, TAMIU has won by an average of 2.75 points. The Dustdevils are coming off an 83-82 (Jan. 4) win at Lubbock Christian University.
TAMIU is led by 6-foot-7 center and Los Angeles native Vadal Faniel. The junior averages 11.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game.
McM travels to St. Mary's University Saturday for a 3 p.m. tip. The Rattlers are 10-2 overall and 3-1 in the Heartland. SMU is led by Birmingham, Ala. native Marvin Whitt. The diminutive guard typically comes off the bench for the Rattlers – but comes up big.
Whitt averages 15 points per game and is 27-of-72 from behind the arc. He also averages 4.7 points and 1.7 assists per game.
McMurry will need a pair of seniors to play well. Kourtney Goff (Rochester, N.Y./Southern Illinois University) averages 13.2 points and nearly 30 minutes per game and has handed out 48 assists – all team highs. 6-foot-7 center Alfred Perez (Spring, Texas/Klein Collins HS) has been a force in front of the basket and averages 11.9 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.
Both games can be heard live locally on KSLI, 1280 AM with the pre-game show beginning 20 minutes ahead of the scheduled tip-off time. The games can also be heard via links on the War Hawks' web site at mcmurrysports.com.