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Ohio Men’s Basketball Set to Host MAC East Rival Akron on Saturday 

Ohio Men’s Basketball Set to Host MAC East Rival Akron on Saturday 

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OHIO MEN'S BASKETBALL 2019-20 • GAME 20
Saturday, Jan. 25, 2019 | 3:30 p.m. EST | Ohio (10-9, 2-4 MAC) vs. Akron (15-4, 5-1 MAC) | Convocation Center | Athens, Ohio | ESPN3 | Live Stats | Listen | Ohio Notes | Akron Notes | Tickets

PROMOTIONS: Saturday, Jan 25 vs. Akron: BOBCAT WARRIORS DAY. Free t-shirts for the first 150 fans. Two free tickets for all active military members and veterans. 

ATHENS, Ohio –  The Ohio men's basketball team (10-9, 2-4 MAC) returns to action on Saturday, Jan. 25 when it hosts Mid-American Conference East Division foe Akron (15-4, 5-1 MAC). Tip-off is set for 3:30 p.m. inside the Convocation Center. The matchup is the second game of a men's and women's doubleheader. The Ohio women's basketball team faces off with Bowling Green at 1 p.m.  Saturday's game can be seen on ESPN3 where Marty Bannister and Toni Roesch will have the call. 

Saturday's game can be heard on the Ohio Sports Network from Learfield IMG College. Russ Eisenstein returns for his 12th season as the "Voice of the Bobcats," along with Ohio Alum Rob Cornelius. WXTQ (Power 105) in Athens returns as the 11-station network's flagship. The broadcasts are also available online through TuneIn.com/OhioBobcats and on the TuneIn app.

STORYLINES
• This is the 83rd all-time meeting between Ohio and Akron. 
• Akron leads the all-time series, 42-40
• The Bobcats and Akron last met on March 2, 2019 when the Bobcats defeated Akron, 73-49, in Akron. 
• Sophomore guard Jason Preston is currently second in the nation in total assists and fifth in assists per game.  
• Ohio has a 514-460 all-time record in MAC Play.  
Jordan Dartis is currently ranked second all-time in Ohio history in made three-pointers with 284. He is five away from tying Nick Kellogg with 290 made threes and six away from setting the new program record. 
• In the last five games, Ben Vander Plas is averaging 18.3 points per game and 8.0 rebounds, while shooting 49.4 percent from the field and 37.5 percent from three-point range. 
• Since the start of conference play, Ben Vander Plas is averaging 18.3 points and 8.0 rebounds per game, while Jason Preston is averaging 17.8 points per game, 6.3 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game. 
• Last week, Vander Plas averaged 25.0 points per game, 8.0 rebounds and shot 55.9 percent from the field and 50.0 percent from three-point range.  
• Ohio has registered an impressive 513-171 (.756) all-time record at the Convocation Center, which opened in 1968.
• Ohio is 5-7 all-time against the Zips since 2013-14. 

SCOUTING AKRON
Akron enters the matchup with the Bobcats with a 15-4 record and a 5-1 mark in MAC play.  The Zips are coming off of an 81-60 victory at Miami on Tuesday. 

Overall, Akron averages 76.9 points per game, while shooting 44.9 percent from the field, 39.3 percent from three-point range and 76.0 percent from the free throw line. The Zips also average 38.4 rebounds, 14.2 assists and 4.8 steals per game. Akron also averages 3.1 blocks and 13.6 turnovers per game. 

Opponents are averaging 64.3 points and 35.9 rebounds a game, while shooting 39.0 percent from the field, 29.5 percent from three-point range and 68.1 percent from the free throw line. Opponents average 9.2 assists, 13.8 turnovers, 6.8 steals and 2.8 blocks per game. 

Individually, Loren Cristian Jackson leads Akron with 17.6 points per game, while shooting 45.7 percent from the field. Tyler Cheese adds 15.9 points and 4.4 rebounds, while Xeyrius Williams averages 14.6 points per game and a team-leading 9.7 rebounds per game. 

SCOUTING OHIO
The Bobcats are 10-9 on the season and 2-4 in MAC play after falling to Toledo, 83-74 on Jan. 21 inside the Convocation Center.

Overall this season, the Bobcats are averaging 71.2 points, 36.0 rebounds, 14.9 assists and 6.2 steals per game. The Bobcats are shooting .447 percent from the field, .348 from three-point range and .669 from the free throw line. 

Ohio is holding opponents to 69.0 points, 33.8 rebounds, 11.3 assists and 6.6 steals per game. Opponents are also shooting 42.3 percent from the field, 32.0 percent from three-point range and 76.7 percent from the free throw line. 

Ohio is averaging 13.3 turnovers per game, while forcing opponents to turn the ball over 13.0 times a game.  

Jason Preston leads the Bobcats with 16.5 points, 6.2 rebounds and 754 assists per game. Ben Vander Plas averages 15.2 points per game and 7.1 rebounds, while shooting 52.2 percent from the field. Jordan Dartis adds 13.4 points per game. 

ALL TIME VS. AKRON
This is the 83rd all-time meeting between Ohio and Akron. 

Akron leads the all-time series, 42-40

Ohio is 5-7 all-time against the Zips since 2013-14

LAST TIME VS. AKRON
The Bobcats and Akron last met on March 2, 2019 when the Bobcats defeated Akron, 73-49, in Akron. 

THE JAY PRESTON SHOW
Through 19 games, point guard Jason Preston is on fire.

Preston scored 11 points, while setting a new career-high in assists (13) and steals (7) while playing all 40 minutes. 

Preston's seven steals was the first 7+ steals game for a Bobcat since 2010 when D.J. Cooper has eight against St. Bonaventure. 

Preston was masterful on Nov. 13 at Iona. Scoring a career high 27 points, going 10-of-17 from the field, 2-of-4 from three-point range and 5-of-5 from the free throw line. He also grabbed a team-leading and career-high 14 rebounds, dished out five assists and had two steals. 

So far this season, Preston is averaging 16.5 points, 6.2 rebounds and 75 assists, while shooting 49.4 percent from the field and 70.7 percent from the free throw line. 

Preston was named the MAC East Co-Player of the Week on Nov. 18 for his play the week of Nov. 11. 

On Nov. 22 against Utah, Preston score 21 points, going 8-of-16 from the field, while dishing out four assists. 

On Nov. 30 against Detroit Mercy, Preston finished the game with 20 points, eight rebounds and 12 assists. 

On Dec. 8 against Tennessee Tech, Preston finished the day with 20 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. 

Preston was named the MAC East Co-Player of the Week for the second time this season on Dec 9. 

Preston was named the MAC East Player of the Week for the third time this season on Dec 30. 

Preston tied his career high on Jan. 14 at Buffalo, scoring 27 points, going 11-of-21 from the field, 2-of-3 from three-point range, while dishing out six assists and grabbing 10 rebounds. 

Preston tied his career high again on Jan. 21 against Toledo, where he scored 27 points, going 11-of-21 from the field, while grabbing seven rebounds and dishing out eight assists. 

RODERICK MAKES HIS DEBUT
The 2019 Ohio High School Gatorade Player of the Year, Ben Roderick, made his Ohio debut on Nov. 21 against No. 24 Baylor. 

In the game, Roderick scored nine points, going 3-of-9 from the field and 3-of-7 from three-point range. Roderick grabbing one rebound, dished out two assists and had two steals. 

After sustaining an injury on Nov. 30 against Detroit Mercy, Roderick returned to the court on Jan. 4 at Western Michigan, where he scored six points in 21 minutes

Roderick's best game of the season so far came on Jan. 21 against Toledo, where Roderick scored 11 points, going 3-of-5 from the field in 20 minutes on the court. 

OHIO IN THE NCAA
Jason Preston is currently second in the nation in total assists and fifth in assists per game. Preston is also ranked seventh in minutes per game. 

Jordan Dartis enters the week ranked 2nd in the nation in three-point field goals per game and 43rd in total 3-point field goals made. 

As a team, Ohio ranks 61st in assists per games and is 64th in three-pointers made per game. 

IN THE MAC
The Bobcats are third in field goal percentage, first in rebounding defense and third in total assists. 

Jason Preston in first in the conference in assists and in minutes played. He is also sixth in the conference in scoring and seventh in steals. 

Jordan Dartis is first in the conference in three-pointers made.  Ben Vander Plas ranks sixth in the MAC in field goal percentage. 

BVP BACK FOR ROUND TWO
19 games into the season and redshirt sophomore forwards Ben Vander Plas is picking up where he left off last season. 

Vander Plas is averaging 15.2 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. Vander Plas is also shooting 52.2 percent from the field. 

On Nov. 16 at No. 10 Villanova, Vander Plas led Ohio with his first double double of the season, scoring 19 points and grabbing 10 boards. 

On Dec. 8 against Tennessee Tech, Vander Plas led the way with 21 points, going 8-of-16 from the field and 3-of-7 from three-point range, while grabbing 11 rebounds, dishing out four assists and grabbing four steals. 

Vander Plas was named the MAC Male Scholar Athlete of the Week on Dec. 12. 

On Dec. 21 against Morehead State, Vander Plas was clutch, tying his career-high with 24 points while also recording 11 rebounds in the victory. 

In Jan. 11, Vander Plas scored a career-high 25 points against Bowling Green. Vander Plas finished the day, 10-of-15 from the field and 5-of-9 from three-point range. 

Vander Plas was even better on Jan. 14 at Buffalo, setting a new career-high, scoring 28 points, going 11-of-20 from the field, 4-of-6 from three-point range and grabbed five rebounds. 

The week of Jan. 13, Vander Plas averaged 25.0 points per game, 8.0 rebounds and shot 55.9 percent from the field and 50.0 percent from three-point range.

In the last five games, Ben Vander Plas is averaging 18.3 points per game and 8.0 rebounds, while shooting 49.4 percent from the field and 37.5 percent from three-point range. 

Since the start of conference play, Ben Vander Plas is averaging 18.3 points and 8.0 rebounds per game.

JORDY'S BACK, TELL A FRIEND
Jordan Dartis made his return to the court on Nov. 5 against St. Bonaventure. The game marked his first game on the court since March 5, 2018. 

In the game, Dartis scored 19 points, hitting three threes and going 7-of-15 from the field. 

On Nov. 13 at Iona, Dartis scored 13 points and went 3-of-9 from the field. 

On Nov. 24 against Middle Tennessee State, Dartis went off, finishing the game with a season-high 32 points, going 9-of-18 from the field, 8-of-13 from three-point range and 6-of-8 from the free throw line, while grabbing two rebounds and dishing out four assists. 

Dartis continued his hot streak on Nov. 30 against Detroit Mercy when he scored 26 points, 18 of while came in the first four minute of the game. 

Dartis was named the MAC East Co-Player of the Week on Dec. 2. 

So far this season, Dartis is averaging 13.4 points per game, while shooting 37.4 percent from the field and 37.9 percent from three-point range. 

On Dec. 21 against Morehead State, Dartis was on fire, leading the Bobcats with 25 points while hitting five threes in the Bobcats' victory. 

On Jan. 7 against EMU, Dartis caught fire once again, leading the Bobcats to victory with 26 points and eight made threes. 

UP NEXT
The Bobcats are back on the road on Tuesday, Jan. 28 when Ohio heads to DeKalb, Ill. to take on Northern Illinois. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. EST inside the NIU Convocation Center. 

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