VMI Basketball enters the new year with a three-game Southern Conference homestand Saturday against UNCG. The Keydets, who have played just one home game since Nov. 27, return to the friendly environs of Cameron Hall where they have posted a 5-1 mark this season. Tipoff is set for 1 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPN+.
Last Time Out: Samford 96, VMI 68 - Saturday, Dec. 29
Looking to resume conference play with a win and close the 2018 calendar year on the right note, the VMI basketball team fell short of its goal as host Samford claimed a 96-68 win over the Keydets Saturday afternoon at the Pete Hanna Center in Birmingham, Alabama. The Keydets (6-8, 0-2) were led by sophomore guard Bubba Parham, who put up 24 points on 8-20 shooting including six three-pointers. The tally marked his 14th career game with over 20 points scored these past two seasons.VMI struggled to contend with Samford in the interior as the Bulldogs outscored the Keydets 40-12 in the paint and claimed 46 rebounds to 28 for VMI. Samford also had production from the bench with 44 points coming from reserves while the injury-depleted Keydets registered 19. Samford’s hustle paid off with 12 second-chance points and 27 points off VMI turnovers throughout the contest. Three other Keydets logged double digits as Myles Lewis and Jake Stephens both had 11 points while Greg Parham had 10. Samford (11-4, 1-1) was led by 23 points from center Ruben Guerrero.
Last Meeting with the Spartans: UNCG 73, VMI 51 - February 1, 2018
A slow first half start by the VMI basketball team allowed the host UNCG Spartans to build a 41-18 lead at the half and eventual 73-51 victory over the Keydets February 1, 2018 at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, North Carolina. UNCG proved dominant in several key factors including outscoring the Keydets in the paint, 28-16, scoring 20 points off VMI turnovers and registering 27 points off the bench to VMI’s six. The Spartans had four players score in double figures led by 13 from Marvin Smith and 12 from center James Dickey. Vereen led VMI with 14 points on 5-14 shooting from the field and converted four three-pointers. Freshman Bubba Parham contributed 13 points by going 5-7 from the field while sophomore center Tyler Creammer also scored in double digits with 10 points on four buckets.
A win over UNCG would ...
-- Move VMI to 6-1 at home in 2018-19.
-- Give VMI its first SoCon win of the season.
Series History – VMI vs. UNCG
This will be the 24th meeting between the teams that fi rst met in 1978. UNCG leads the series,15-8, and has taken the last four meetings. VMI last defeated the Spartans 86-72 on February 11, 2016.
Back Home in January
The Keydets will take a 5-1 home mark into January as they open up a three-game SoCon homestand against UNCG (Jan. 5), Furman (Jan.10) and Woff ord (Jan. 12). VMI will play four home and four away contests in January.
Bubba Still on Top
Through games of January 2, sophomore guard Bubba Parham continues to lead the SoCon in scoring with a 22.2 PPG average. Parham entered December with four straight 30+ point games, and became the fi rst SoCon player to tally 30 or more points in four straight contests since Steph Curry of Davidson in 2008-09. Not just a scorer, Parham also garnered a career-high nine rebounds with a 30-point outing in VMI’s win 87-79 OT win at Stetson. Parham started his blistering four-game scoring stretch when he scored a career-high 35 points and knocked down a school record 10 3-pointers in the 92-82 loss at #10 ranked Kentucky Nov. 18. It was the fi rst time Parham had surpassed the
30+ point plateau in a game in his career and he followed it up two nights later with 33 points against Kentucky Christian at Cameron Hall. Parham, the 2018 SoCon Freshman of the Year as selected by the media, has 14 games of 20+ points in his career following his 29 point outing vs. North Alabama Dec. 21 and 24 points at Samford December 29.