The sixth-seeded Youngstown State men's basketball team (15-14, 10-8 Horizon League) opens the first round of the 2012 Horizon League Tournament hosting the seventh-seeded Green Bay Phoenix (15-14, 10-8 HL). Tipoff is set for 7:05 p.m. at the Beeghly Center and can be heard on 570 WKBN-AM.
• Sophomore Kendrick Perry was named All-Horizon League First-Team after leading the league in scoring and steals in 2011-12. He is just the fifth player in Horizon League history to lead the circuit in both categories during conference play only.
• Junior Damian Eargle was named to the 2012 Horizon League All-Defensive Team. Eargle set the Horizon League all games and conference-games only single-season blocks record with 113 and 65, respectively. He also owns the Horizon League career blocks record in conference play with 122.
• For the first time in school history, three players have made at least 50 3-pointers in the same season. Junior Blake Allen leads the team with 87 while senior Ashen Ward and sophomore Kendrick Perry each have made 51. Senior DuShawn Brooks is nearing the mark and has made 43 this season.
• With the win over Wright State, YSU has the best one-year improvement (8-win improvement) since the Horizon League went to 10 teams. Cleveland State had a nine-win improvement when the HL had just nine teams. YSU can match that with a win over Detroit.
• YSU is guaranteed its first .500 season since 2000-01 and has the most wins since 19 that same year.
• YSU had its most league wins since joining the Horizon League and most conference wins since posting an 11-5 mark in the Mid-Continent Conference in 2000-01.
• Junior Blake Allen ranks second on the YSU single-season list with 87 3-points, four shy of tying the single-season mark set by Craig Haese (pronounced "Hays") in 2000-01.
• YSU also has four players with at least 40 3-pointers made this season – a first in school history.
• Senior Ashen Ward and sophomore Kendrick Perry have both made 51 3-pointers this season. Each needs just three more to move into a tie for 10th on the single-season list.
Guins in the Tourney
Since joining the Horizon League in 2001-02, YSU owns a tournament record of 2-10. This is also Youngstown State's third home tournament game. The Guins own a record of 1-1 when hosting a first-round tournament game defeating Detroit in 2007 and losing to UIC in 2009.
The Green Bay Series
This is the 32nd meeting between Youngstown State and Green Bay in an all-times series that dates back to 1993. Green Bay owns a 24-7 advantage in the series. The two teams split the season series this year. The Guins won, 77-47, on Jan. 22 at the Beeghly Center while the Phoenix escaped with 71-65 victory on Feb. 14 at the Resch Center. This is also the fifth time YSU and UWGB have met in the tournament. Green Bay own a 3-1 edge in tournament games. YSU's lone tournament win against Green Bay was a 65-61 victory in 2003.
About Green Bay
Green Bay enters the tournament with a 15-14 overall mark and a 10-8 Horizon League record. The Phoenix, who have won five straight and eight of the last 10, are lead by First-Team All-Horizon League pick Alec Brown with 13.6 points and 8.2 rebounds per game. Freshman Keifer Sykes is averaging 11.2 points per game and was named to the Horizon League All-Newcomer Team.
KP First-Team All-League
Sophomore Kendrick Perry was named to the All-Horizon League First-Team. Below are some tidbits on Perry:
• Led HL in scoring in all games (16.8) and league games only (16.8 ppg).
• Led league in steals in conference games (2.4).
• Just the fifth player to lead the Horizon League in scoring and steals in the same season.
• Led the league with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.0.
• Ranked second in steals (2.4) in all games.
• Ranked tied for third in assists per game (3.9).
• Ranked tied for 10th with 1.8 3-pointers made per game.
• Is the first sophomore in school history to earn first-team all-conference honors.
• First YSU player since Quin Humphrey (2006-07 and 2005-06) to be named first-team all-league.
Eargle Named All-Defensive Team
Junior forward Damian Eargle was voted to the Horizon League All-Defensive Team. Below are some notes on Eargle's season:
• Set the Horizon League single-season blocks record for all games with 113 and league-games only with 65.
• Owns the Horizon League career record for blocks in conference play at 122.
• Ranks third nationally with 3.9 blocks per game.
Youngstown State is splattered throughout the latest release of NCAA statistics. As a team, the Guins rank 11th with 8.8 3-pointers made per game and 13th with 5.6 blocks per game. They are also 23rd nationally with just 11.2 turnovers per contest and 32nd with a .382 3-point field-goal percentage. Individually, junior Damian Eargle ranks third with 3.9 blocks per game. Kendrick Perry ranks 12th with 2.4 steals per contest. Blake Allen ranks 12th with 3.0 3-pointers made per game and 14th with a .437 3-point field-goal percentage.
Best HL Turnaround
With its win over Wright State on Feb. 23, YSU set a Horizon League (since becoming a 10-team league) mark with an eight-win turnaround in one season. Cleveland State set the nine-team league mark of a nine win improvement from 2006-07 to 2007-08.
KP Most Points Since Quin
With 488 points this season, sophomore Kendrick Perry has scored the most points in a single-season since Quin Humphrey scored 584 in 2006-07. Perry, who led the league in scoring at 16.8 points per game, has scored at least 20 points in seven of the last nine games and is averaging 22.8 points per game during that span. He needs just 12 points to become the first player since Humphrey to score 500 points and the first sophomore since Reggie Kemp to reach that mark in 1989-90.
Guins Set 3-Point Mark Again
With 11 3-pointers against Wright State on Feb. 23, the Guins set the school's single-season record for most 3-pointers with 254. They broke the record of 235 set in 2010-11. The previous mark of 199 was set in 1997-98.
For the first time in school history, three players have made at least 50 3-pointers in the same season. Junior Blake Allen leads the team with 87 while senior Ashen Ward and sophomore Kendrick Perry each have made 51. Senior DuShawn Brooks is nearing the mark and has made 43 this season.
Allen in Top 10
With three 3-pointers made against Detroit on Feb. 25, junior Blake Allen made his 134th career 3-pointer at Youngstown State. He currently ranks seventh all-time. He needs two more to move into sixth place (Doug Underwood, 135, 2001-04). He also has 87 3-pointers this season, which ranks second on the single-season list. He is six shy of breaking the single-season record of 92 set by Craig Haese in 2000-01.
Ward Now Into 5th
With 51 3-pointers this season, senior Ashen Ward now ranks fifth all-time with 149 career 3-pointers. Ward also needs two more to move into a tie for 10th place on the single-season list with 53.
KP Sets Single-Season Steals Mark
With three steals against Austin Peay on Feb. 18, sophomore Kendrick Perry set the school single-season steals mark. He now has 71 steals this season. The old record of 64 was set by Marlon Williamson in 2002-03.
A Win Will
• Improve YSU to 16-14 on the year.
• Mark YSU's most overall wins since 2000-01.
• Mark the third tournament victory since joining the Horizon League.
• Mark the first tournament win since 2007.
• Mark YSU's 10th home win of the season.
• Mark the first time with 10 home wins since 2006-07.
• Mark the program's eighth win over Green Bay.
• Mark Head Coach Jerry Slocum's 654th career victory and his 74th at Youngstown State.
• Mark YSU's 1,008th victory in the program's history.
Need to Hit the Glass
Coaches often talk of the importance of rebounding and for the Guins it is vital to success. When the Guins outrebound their opponents they own a record of 9-0.
To Catch a Thief
With a career-high seven steals against Loyola on Feb. 5, sophomore Kendrick Perry set the YSU sophomore record for steals in a season with 56. He also holds the single-season steals mark. With 111 career steals, Perry now ranks eighth all-time.
Eargle Has Chance For 1,000
In under three seasons of playing college basketball, junior Damian Eargle has scored more than 900 points with 909. Eargle needs just 91 more points to reach 1,000 for his entire career, which includes 268 points during the 2008-09 season at UNC-Greensboro. Last season, Eargle ranked second on the squad with 339 points for an average of 11.3 points per game.
Perry On His Way to 800 Points
Sophomore Kendrick Perry could become the 33rd player in school history to score 1,000 career points. In just 57 career games, Perry has scored 757 points and needs 243 more to reach the coveted plateau. For his career, he is averaging 12.7 points per game, including a 16.8 points per game scoring average this year.
Hold Under 70
Another ingredient for the Guins to be successful is to hold their opponents under 70 points. YSU is 15-4 when not allowing its opponents to score 70 points or more. When allowing 70-or-more points, the Penguins are 0-10.
The Starting Line
• The Guins have had the same starting lineup in all 29 games.
• Four starters are averaging in double figures in all games.
• Four starters are scoring in double figures in Horizon League games only.
• Each starter has posted at least one 20-point outing.
Eargle Second to 100 Blocks
Junior Damian Eargle has 113 blocks in 29 games this season, which ranks second on the YSU single-season list. He needs 26 more to set the single-season mark of 138 set by Ricky Tunstall in 1982-83. His 91 blocks last season now rank third on the list.