Raiders seek third-straight win against Miami Redhawks
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The Raiders men’s basketball team will take the floor tonight against the Miami Redhawks for an 8:00 p.m. tipoff at the Nutter Center.
Miami owns a 17-10 record historically between the two schools, but Wright State has won two in a row over the past two seasons and looks to improve their season record to 8-3 with a win.
The Redhawks (3-5) are currently riding a three game losing streak since falling on to road to IPFW, Evansville and Dayton, and are 1-5 this season away from Millet Hall. Miami also has not played a game since Dec. 8.
Miami’s struggles can be attributed to their sub-par performances on the defensive end. Miami’s opponents are shooting over 50 percent from the floor overall this season and 40 percent from three-point land.
For Wright State, the Raiders may have to be without guard Kendall Griffin who suffered an injury last week in WSU’s victory against Hofstra. Griffin did not dress for the second half of the game, and head coach Billy Donlon called him a “game time decision” against Miami.
Donlon expects the recent hiring of Miami head coach John Cooper to end the days of low scoring defensive struggles between the two schools.
“I would be shocked if this game is in the 40’s,” Donlon said.
Donlon also believes that free throws will be necessary to aid the Raider offense, which has been sporadic at times getting to the charity line this season. Wright State shot only six free throws against Bowling Green earlier this year, and against Hofstra the team went 11-15 and only 1-2 in the first half.
“Our offense is different when we score from the free throw line,” Donlon said.
Donlon believes this game, while not a Horizon League game, will have a “conference like environment” as the teams have developed a mild rivalry over the past few years with close games and a competitive history.
Miami and Wright State have played against each other every season since 1998-99. After the current contract ends next season, the future of the series is in jeopardy and may not continue. Miami head coach John Cooper stated the program may cut ties with local rivalries to expand their scheduling abilities, but Donlon remains confident an agreement will be reached.
“We’ll contract about renewing the contract in the future,” Donlon said. “I’m sure we’ll start a new series.”
The Wright State women’s team will play Western Kentucky at 5:30 p.m., with the men’s game following after. The men’s game against Miami can be seen live on the Dayton CW. Both games are free for Wright State students with a valid Wright1 card.