The Broncos and Huskies both enter the game with a 5-2 record. Western has won its last two games, beating San Jose State on November 28 and then San Diego this past Sunday, 68-66. Northeastern lost its last game 60-46 to Harvard on December 3rd.
Six-foot-eight, 234 pound senior forward Scott Eatherton leads the Huskies in scoring, averaging 15.7 per game along with a team best 6.5 rebounds per game. Six-foot-six, 196 pound junior guard David Walker leads with 3.3 rebounds per game.
The biggest win of the year for Northeastern was a 76-73 victory at Florida State. David Walker went off in that game, scoring 22 points for the Huskies. Eatherton also had 16 points. Northeastern never let the Seminoles relax on offense and the Huskies remained patient offensively.
Against this Northeastern team, it will be critical for the Broncos to keep turnovers to a minimum. Western has kept calm against tough defenses earlier in the year, for example against Oakland, and was able to adjust and get the ball to whoever had the hot hand. If they do this again, a win should be within reach.
Junior forward Connar Tava is currently WMU's leading scorer, with 15.7 point per game. In Western's last game against San Diego, Tava put up 23. Senior guard Austin Richie, senior guard David Brown, and sophomore forward Tucker Haymond are also putting up 13.1, 13.6, and 13.9 points per game, respectively.
Expect the starting lineup for the Broncos to look the same as it has all year:
C - Drake LaMont
F - Connar Tava
F - Tucker Haymond
G - David Brown
G - Austin Richie
Freshman guard Thomas Wilder and sophomore forward Kellen McCormick will also see plenty of minutes.
The Northeastern lineup has also remained constant through the first seven games of the season:
F - Scott Eatherton
F - Quincy Ford
G - David Walker
G - Zach Stahl
G - T. J. Williams
These are two respectable mid-majors right now and it should be a well fought battle. I think the dynamic nature of the Tava-Haymond forward combo along with the perimeter threat of Brown and Richie tip this game in the Broncos' favor.
Prediction: Western 77 - Northeastern 72
Gametime: Saturday, December 6, 4:00pm Eastern
Location: Matthews Arena, Boston, MA
How to listen: The game can be heard on select stations of the Bronco Radio Network, including flagship 96.5 FM WZOX in Kalamazoo.