Men's Basketball Hosts Bridgeport Friday at Webster Bank Arena
While the game does not officially count in the stats or in the record books, Friday night's exhibition game between the Fairfield University and the University of Bridgeport men's basketball teams still generates excitement around the community. The game offers local college basketball fans their first chance to watch their hometown teams make their unofficial debut.
The Stags host the Purple Knights on November 1 at the Webster Bank Arena with game time slated for 7 pm. The exhibition game has become an annual event as this will be the eighth straight meeting between Bridgeport and Fairfield. The Stags hold a 6-1 edge in the series that started with a 68-51 win in 2006. Fairfield posted a 54-52win in last year's match up behind Derek Needham's 15 points. The Purple Knights left the Arena with a victory in 2009 when they benefitted a 75-69 decision.
Bridgeport comes off another 20-win season, posting a 23-10 mark that allowed the Purple Knights to capture both the East Coast Conference (ECC) regular-season and tournament championships. The team enjoyed a streak in which it won 12 in a row and 16 of 17 games before falling in the NCAA Division II East Regional. Ivan Simic is the team's top returning scorer with 11.7 points per game. JoJo Swift is also a returning double-digit scorer, netting 10.4 points every forty minutes.
Fairfield is coming off a 19-win season which sent the Stags to their fourth straight postseason appearance. Head Coach Sydney Johnson led his team to the 2013 CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament for the second straight season. The team will rely on the senior leadership of Maurice Barrow, who begins his fourth season in a Fairfield uniform. Barrow finished the 2012-13 season with an 8.9 scoring average in addition to his 3.9 rebounds per game. Sophomores Marcus Gilbert and Amadou Sidibe will also play key roles in this year's game plan. Gilbert posted 5.8 points per contest while Sidibe collected 5.7 points and a team-best 6.2 rebounds every forty minutes.
The Stags will start the 2013-14 regular season on November 9, hosting Sacred Heart University in the third game of the 2013 Connecticut 6 Classic. This year's tripleheader will be played at Webster Bank Arena and features games at 3 pm, 5:30 pm, and 8 pm. Fairfield will play three of its first four games at home this year, also hosting the University of Hartford (November 13) and the College of the Holy Cross (November 20) as part of the Naismith Hall of Fame Tip Off Tournament.
Season tickets, mini-plans, and individual game tickets are available by calling the Fairfield University Athletic Ticket Office at (203) 254-4136 or by emailing Helen Smaldone at email@example.com.