PREVIEW: RMU to open 2020-21 campaign against Point Park

Mens+basketball+will+host+Point+Park+on+Saturday+night+to+begin+their+season.+Photo+Credit%3A+Thomas+Ognibene

Men’s basketball will host Point Park on Saturday night to begin their season. Photo Credit: Thomas Ognibene

By Tyler Gallo, Sports Editor

MOON TOWNSHIP, PA– The men’s basketball team will begin their season Saturday night when they host the Point Park Pioneers (0-2) for the first time since 1978. RMU was originally slated to play former NEC rival Saint Francis (1-3) in Loretto, but the game was canceled and replaced with the Point Park matchup at the UPMC Events Center.

Last Time Out:

The last time these two teams faced off was 42 years ago in just the second year for RMU as an NCAA Division I program. On February 20, 1978, Point Park defeated Robert Morris at the John Jay Center 80-65, and to date that is the only matchup between the two teams.

Recapping RMU:

RMU will begin their season in a new conference after competing in the NEC since 1981-82, ending their stay in the conference with a conference championship over Saint Francis last season. RMU has unfinished business on its mind and was ranked fourth in the Horizon League preseason poll. They will look to live up to the respect the new conference has given them this season.

Scouting Point Park:

Point Park has gotten off to an interesting start, only playing two of their nine scheduled games to this point with the other seven being postponed. They began the season with an 81-78 loss at the hands of Bryant & Stratton-Buffalo (2-1) on November 7. Their next contest to take place was on Wednesday at Kent State (1-0), a game in which they were routed 90-41. Kameron Shockley has scored 29 points in two games this season, leading the team.

Players to Watch:

AJ Bramah (RMU) – Bramah will begin his second season as a Colonial attempting to continue his dominance from last season. Bramah was picked to the All-Horizon League Second Team after a season where he averaged 13.4 points-per-game and 8.4 rebounds-per-game in addition to shooting .569 from the field, best in the NEC and 92nd overall in the NCAA. Bramah will look to start the season on a good note against Point Park.

Dante Treacy (RMU) – Treacy is another Colonial to keep an eye on during this season, as he started to show major strides last season, averaging 8.7 points-per-game including 18 in the aforementioned championship game against Saint Francis. Treacy has the ability to dish the ball around the court, averaging 4.5 assists-per-game last year, second-best in the NEC. Watch out for him in this matchup.

Kameron Shockley (PPU) – Shockley has far and away been the offensive leader for the Pioneers this season, averaging 14.5 points-per-game and 7.0 rebounds-per-game through two contests. Last season, he averaged 9.8 points and 5.1 rebounds. He is a player RMU will have to contain in this game.

Garret McHenry (PPU) – McHenry had a solid season last year for the Pioneers, averaging 11.7 points and 4.8 rebounds. He has certainly gotten off to a similar start this season, averaging 6 points and four rebounds through the first two games. McHenry is a reliable second option on the floor and a player that needs to be watched out for.

Prediction:

While Point Park is a great team to start the season against, the level of competition is nowhere near close, and the game will reflect that with RMU winning 79-36.