With just four conference games remaining, the USC Upstate men’s basketball team begins its second-to-last road trip of the season Thursday at 7 p.m. when the Spartans travel to DeLand, Fla., to face Stetson from the Edmunds Center.
The Spartans enter the week having won seven of their last eight games and sit in third place in the conference standings. Upstate will be in search of its eighth road win of the year and fourth in a row when it takes the court Thursday against the Hatters. No team in the Upstate Division I era has won eight road games and four in a row in the same season.
Upstate continues to be led on offense by senior guard Ty Greene. Greene is first in the Atlantic Sun Conference and 16th in the NCAA with 19.7 points per game. He leads the league with 14 20-point games and has scored over 20 points in eighth straight conference games. The Knoxville, Tenn., also ranks 11th in the nation with 2.4 steals per game and leads the A-Sun with 71 three-pointers made.
Fellow senior Fred Miller is 12th in the conference in scoring with 12.5 points per game and ranks second in both assists (4.1 apg) and steals (2.0 spg). Sophomore Michael Buchanan is first in the A-Sun with 2.7 offensive rebounds per game to help Upstate rank 17th in the country with 13.6 offensive rebounds per game.
Stetson suffered its third consecutive loss Saturday after dropping an 82-57 decision at Northern Kentucky. The Hatters own an 8-18 overall record and a 2-8 mark inside the conference and are eighth in the league standings.
Senior forward Kentwan Smith is first on the team and eighth in the conference with 13.8 points per game. Smith also paces the Hatters and ranks second in the league with 6.3 rebounds per game and is tied for first in the A-Sun with five double-doubles. Divine Myles and Brian Pegg also score in double figures and average 10.7 and 10.2 points per game, respectively.
USC Upstate and Stetson will be meeting on the hardwood for the 15th time when the two schools tipoff Thursday. The all-time series between Upstate and Stetson dates back to the 2006-07 season and is tied 7-7 after Upstate posted a 91-67 victory over the Hatters Jan. 24 inside the Hodge Center. Upstate has won two straight and five of the last eight against Stetson, but will be in search of its first win in the Edmunds center since 2011.