The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

December 4, 2013

Marshall travels to Vandy tonight

By Gary Fauber
Assistant Sports Editor

— Marshall hasn’t had any road success with the Ohio Valley and Atlantic Sun conferences. Might as well try its hand with some power conferences.

The Thundering Herd will venture into SEC territory tonight to take on Vanderbilt. Tip-off will be 8 p.m.

It will be the first-ever meeting between the two.

Marshall (4-3) is coming off last Saturday’s 88-78 loss at East Tennessee State. The Herd shot just 42.9 percent (27 of 63) from the floor, including 6 of 30 (20 percent) from 3-point range, and hit only 18 of 35 (51.4 percent) free throws attempts.

It was the Herd’s second failed attempt at winning a road game, after an overtime loss at Morehead State on Nov. 17.

Tonight’s game is the second of four straight away from home for the Herd, and the first of three in a row against teams from BCS-level conferences. Marshall will visit Penn State of the Big 10 at 4 p.m. Saturday, then the annual Capital Classic against Big 12 member West Virginia is Saturday, Dec. 14.

Forwards Elijah Pittman and Ryan Taylor and point guard Kareem Canty have started all seven games for the Herd. Pittman, a senior, averages 23.7 points and 4.6 rebounds.

Taylor, a redshirt freshman, averages 11.4 points and a team-high 7.6 rebounds.

Canty, the reigning Conference USA Freshman of the Week, leads the league and is sixth in the country at 7.3 assists, and his 51 total steals rank ninth in the nation.

Vanderbilt (4-3) is coming off a 70-64 loss at Texas.

Redshirt sophomore guard Eric McClellan leads the Commodores at 17.6 ppg. Senior forward Rod Odom is next at 13.3 and senior guard Kyle Fuller at 10.4. Odom has pulled down 5.0 boards.

Rebounding is definitely a team effort for Vanderbilt. All seven players who have played in all seven games for the Commodores are averaging 4.1 rpg.