Men's Basketball

Men's Basketball: First Place Raiders Put Streak on the Line Monday at Capital

Jimmy Darnley (Photo by JT Higgins)

Mount Union travels to Capital for an Ohio Athletic Conference men's basketball game Monday at 7:30 pm in Columbus.

There will be a LIVE AUDIO webcast and LIVE STATS at http://livestats.prestosports.com/mountunion

The Purple Raiders (12-2, 7-0 OAC) have won 10 straight games and hold a 1.5 game lead in first place in the OAC.

Mount Union is the OAC's No. 1 scoring team at 87.6 points per game and the top three-point shooting team in the conference with 160 made three's and 39.5 percent from beyond the arc.

Sophomore Cody Dillon (Newton Falls/Newton Falls) had a game-high 22 points against Wilmington last Saturday and leads the Raiders in scoring on the season at 14.1 points per game.

Senior T.J. Gillespie (Toledo/Toledo St. John's) is second on the team in scoring at 13.1 points per game and is among conference leaders in assists (4.4 per game) and steals (1.5 per game).

Sophomore Jarrett Ruffin (Northfield/Nordonia) averages 12.6 points per game and his 6.2 rebounds per game leads the team while his 24 blocked shots is third-best in the OAC.

Junior Nate Jacubec (Struthers/Struthers) rounds out the double figure scorers for the Raiders at 10.1 points per game and is coming off a season-best 19 point performance against Wilmington.

Capital (6-8, 3-4 OAC) had a two-game win streak halted with a 72-71 home loss to Ohio Northern this past Saturday.  The Crusaders are in seventh place in the OAC at 3-4 and have dropped three of their last four games at home.

Capital is the No. 4 scoring defense team in the OAC allowing 74.0 points per game and the Crusaders are the No. 7 scoring offense at 73.9 points per game.

Capital, like Mount Union, have just two seniors on the roster and are led in scoring by sophomore A.J. Dixon at 13.7 points per game.

Junior Andrew Bolka averages 10.7 points per game and is fourth in the OAC at 6.9 rebounds per game.

SERIES

This will be the 101st meeting all-time between the two schools with Capital holding a 73-27 advantage.  Capital has won eight of the last 10 meetings but Mount Union won in the last meeting in Bexley -- a 63-59 win in last year's OAC Tournament semifinal.

COACHES

Mike Fuline (Kent State '98) is 36-32 in his third year as head coach at Mount Union.  A year ago, he led the Raiders to their highest win total in seven years and a run to the OAC Tournament title game. Prior to Mount Union, Fuline was a high school coach for eight years at both Rootstown and Massillon Jackson.  In 2010, his Jackson team won the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division I State Championship.

Damon Goodwin (Dayton '86) is 329-195 in his 20th season as head coach at Capital.  Goodwin has led the Crusaders to five OAC titles and been named OAC Coach of the Year six times.  His 2008-09 squad won a school-record 26 games and advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16. 

UP NEXT ...

Mount Union finishes out the first half of the OAC schedule on the road Wednesday at Muskingum.

MOUNT UNION PROJECTED STARTERS

Cody Dillon – So., G., 6-4, Newton Falls / Newton Falls – 13.4 ppg, 4.3 rpg
T.J. Gillespie
– Sr., G., 5-11, Toledo / Toledo St. John's – 12.3 ppg, 4.6 apg, 1.3 spg
Jarrett Ruffin – So., F., 6-6, Northfield / Nordonia – 12.8 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 1.3 bpg
Nate Jacubec – Jr., G., 5-11, Struthers / Struthers – 10.3 ppg, 3.0 apg, 1.3 spg
Jimmy Darnley – Sr., F., 6-5, Canton / GlenOak – 6.8 ppg, 4.7 rpg

MOUNT UNION PLAYER NOTES

T.J. Gillespie - Sr., G, 5-11 - Toledo/St. John's

  • Has started all 14 games this season
  • Has scored in double figures in 11 games this season
  • Season-high/career-high 22 points vs. Hartwick (N.Y.) (11/30/13)
  • Season-high/career-high 10 assists at Rochester (N.Y.) (12/1/13)
  • Season-high/career-high 5 steals vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Holiday Inn Airport Tournament All-Tournament Team
  • Played in 85 career games

Jimmy Darnley - Sr., F, 6-5 - Canton/GlenOak

  • Has played in all 14 games this season with 12 starts
  • Has scored in double figures in five games this season
  • Season-high/career-high 13 points at Rochester (N.Y.) (12/1/13)
  • Season-high/career-high 11 rebounds vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Recorded first career double-double (10 points, 11 rebounds) vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Played in 76 career games

Nate Jacubec - Jr., G, 5-11 - Struthers/Struthers

  • Has started all 14 games this season
  • Has scored in double figures in eight games this season
  • Season-high 19 points vs. Westminster (1/3/14) and Wilmington (1/18/14)
  • Season-high 7 assists vs. Olivet (12/29/13)
  • Season-high 4 steals vs. Olivet (12/29/13)
  • Career-high 31 points at Wilmington (1/16/13)
  • Career-high 6 three-pointers at Wilmington (1/16/13)
  • Career-high 10 rebounds at Westminster (11/16/12) and at Baldwin Wallace (12/20/12)
  • Career-high 7 assists at Hiram (11/24/12) vs. Olivet (12/29/13)
  • Career-high 4 steals vs. Finlandia (12/30/12) vs. Olivet (12/29/13)
  • Has played in 66 career games with 65 career starts
  • 2012 OAC Freshman of the Year
  • 2013 All-OAC Second Team, 2013 D3Hoops.com All-Great Lakes Region Third Team

Stevie Griffin - Jr., F., 6-3 - Canton/Massillon Jackson

  • Has played in five games and started two
  • Season-high 9 points at Pitt-Greensburg (11/16/13)
  • Career-high 25 points at Wilmington (1/12/13)
  • Career-high 4 assists, two times with last at Ohio Northern (2/9/13)
  • Career-high 6 three-pointers at Geneva (11/19/11)
  • Career-high 8 rebounds vs. Westminster (11/22/11) and at Muskingum (2/1/12)
  • Brother of teammate Miles Griffin

Jarrett Ruffin – So., F., 6-6 - Northfield/Nordonia

  • Has started all 14 games this season
  • Has scored in double figures in 11 games this season
  • Season-high/career-high 31 points vs. Olivet (12/29/13)
  • Season-high 4 blocks vs. Hartwick (N.Y.) (11/30/13)
  • Season-high/career-high 13 rebounds at Heidelberg (12/7/13)
  • Career-high 4 blocks vs. Marietta (2/13/13) and vs. Hartwick (N.Y.) (11/30/13)
  • Season-high/career-high three assists vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/4/14)
  • Recorded two double-doubles this season - 16 points & 13 rebounds at Heidelberg (12/7/13), 13 points & 11 rebounds vs. Otterbein (12/14/13)
  • Played in 41 career games with 26 starts
  • 2013 OAC Freshman of the Year
  • 2013 D3Hoops.com Great Lakes Rookie of the Year

Cody Dillon - So., G., 6-4 - Newton Falls/Newton Falls

  • Has started all 14 games this season
  • Has scored in double figures in nine games this season
  • Season-high/career-high 35 points vs. John Carroll (12/4/13) 
  • Season-high/career-high 8 rebounds at Pitt-Greensburg (11/16/13) / at Ohio Northern (1/11/14)
  • Season-high/career-high 8 three-pointers vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Career-high 6 assists vs Thiel (11/17/12)
  • Tied school single-game record for 3-pointers made – 8 vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Ohio Athletic Conference record for 3-point percentage in a game - .727 (8-of-11) vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Holiday Inn Airport Tournament All-Tournament Team
  • Started every game of his college career - 41 games
  • 2013 OAC All-Tournament Team

Kyle Scelza - So., G., 6-1 - Stow/Stow-Munroe Falls

  • Has played in all 14 games this season
  • Has scored in double figures in eight games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 18 points vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/4/14)
  • Season-high 5 rebounds at Pitt-Greensburg (11/16/13) and vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Season-high 3 assists at Bethany (W.Va.) (11/19/13)
  • Career-high 6 rebounds and 4 assists vs Pitt-Greensburg (11/20/12)
  • Career-high 5 three-pointers vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Career-high 4 steals vs John Carroll (1/23/13)
  • Has played in 42 consecutive games (every game of career)

Evan Keeslar - So., G., 6-3 - Uniontown/Green

  • Has played in all 14 games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 18 points vs. Baldwin Wallace (12/18/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 8 rebounds vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Season-high/Career-high 5 assists vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Has played in 41 consecutive games (every game of career)

Michael Shull - So., G., 5-10 - Massillon/Massillon Jackson

  • Has played in all 14 games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 8 points vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 assists vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 rebounds vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)

Jeff Foreman – Fr., G., 6-2 - Mentor/Mentor

  • Has played in all 14 games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 17 points at Pitt-Greensburg (11/16/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 6 assists vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 5 rebounds vs. Otterbein (12/14/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 steals vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)

DeAllen Jackson – Fr., G., 5-11 - Akron/Archbishop Hoban

  • Has played in 13 games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 9 points vs. John Carroll (12/4/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 5 rebounds at Pitt-Greensburg (11/16/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 5 assists vs. Hartwick (N.Y.) (11/30/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 steals vs. Olivet (Mich.) (12/29/13)

Tyler Sherman – Fr., C., 6-7 - Norton/Norton

  • Has played in 12 games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 7 points vs. Otterbein (12/14/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 8 rebounds vs. Hartwick (N.Y.) (11/30/13)
  • Season-high/Career-high 3 blocks vs. Westminster (Pa.) (1/3/14)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 assists vs. Adrian (Mich.) (12/28/13)

Miles Griffin - Fr., G., 6-3 - Canton/Massillon Jackson

  • Has played in four games this season
  • Season-high/Career-high 5 points vs. Wilmington (1/18/14)
  • Season-high/Career-high 2 rebounds vs. Marietta (1/15/14) and vs. Wilmington (1/18/14)
  • Brother of teammate Stevie Griffin
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