Player of the Night -- Earl Brown, St. Francis (PA)
Sometimes, it takes a monster performance to stop a losing streak. St. Francis (PA) beat Central Connecticut State, 67-60, to pick up its first win of the season (1-11). Brown scored 16 points and grabbed 25 rebounds, the second most in NEC history. It’s the most rebounds in a game since Morgan State’s Kevin Thompson had 25 in December 2009. That leaves just three winless teams: Grambling State, Maryland-Eastern Shore and Mississippi Valley State.
Freshman of the Night -- Isaac Fotu, Hawaii
Fotu scored a season-high 29 points and added 9 rebounds, as Hawaii beat Cal State Fullerton, 90-88. Fotu’s 29 fell one short of Chris Gaines’ school freshman record set in 1987. Fotu scored the Warriors’ first 10 points, and had 20 at the half. Garrett Jefferson’s scored the game-winner at the buzzer, his only bucket of the game.
Stat Sheet Stuffer -- Neil Watson, Southern Miss
Southern Miss beat Dillard, 135-41. In a 94-point win, there’s bound to be some eye-popping numbers. For example, Southern Miss outscored Dillard 63-0 off of turnovers. Among many career highs, Watson’s 17 assists are particularly notable. It set a school record and stands as the second-most in Conference USA history. The last player with more assists in under 30 minutes of action was Mateen Cleaves in 2000.
Scorer of the Night -- Augustine Rubit, South Alabama
As the only Division I player averaging 20 and 10, Rubit’s no stranger to big games. But Thursday may have been his finest. He finished with a career-high 32 points to go with 13 rebounds as the Jaguars beat Louisiana-Monroe, 77-72.
Bench Player of the Night -- Sabatino Chen, Colorado
Coming off the bench for the first time this season, Chen’s career-high 15 points almost propelled Colorado to an upset of Arizona. His potential game-winning 3-pointer was waved off at the end of regulation. Chen had scored in single digits in 46 straight games.