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The Lions last played on Dec. 1, falling to the defending BIG EAST Champions Seton Hall, 95-71. Mike Smith netted a game-high 23 points to lead the way for Columbia.
• The Midshipmen are coming off a thrilling, 76-74, victory over Bryant Tuesday. Shawn Anderson converted on the game-winning layup with 13 seconds remaining to help Navy overcome a 25-point deficit, which was the largest comeback in program history.
• The Midshipmen already have a win against an Ivy League opponent this season. They topped Penn, 70-68, on Nov. 26.
• Anderson leads Navy in scoring (11.9 PPG) and rebounding (5.4 RPG).
Columbia leads the all-time series with Navy, 18-16. The Lions won the last meeting, 69-63, in Annapolis during the 2004-05 campaign. The teams have only squared off twice in the last 57 years.
COLUMBIA VS. THE PATRIOT LEAGUE
Columbia has a rich history playing teams in the Patriot League. The Lions are 130-98 against teams currently in the conference. Columbia’s most common opponent is Army, who they have faced 58 times. The Lions are 1-1 against the conference thus far, falling to Army, 88-83, on Nov. 23 before topping Colgate, 81-78, in overtime on Nov. 26.
• The Valiants (NCAA Division III) are coming off a 66-60 triumph over Mount Saint Mary Tuesday.
• Alext Tuci leads is averaging 18.4 points and 10.6 rebounds per contest to lead the Valiants.
Sunday will be the first meeting between Columbia and Manhattanville.
ON THE OFFENSIVE
Through the first quarter of the season, Columbia’s offense ranks first in points per game (77.9), field goal percentage (.468), 3-point percentage (.468), 3-pointers made (9.0) and free throw percentage (.779).
IF I COULD BE LIKE MIKE
First-year point guard Mike Smith netted a career-high 23 points, going 8-of-13 from the floor at Seton Hall on Dec. 1. Smith has started every game for the Lions and played a key role in Columbia’s opening night win. He netted 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting and drilled a key 3-pointer with the shot clock winding down and drew a charge on the ensuing possesion to help seal the Lions’ victory.
Junior Nate Hickman has emerged as the Ivy League’s third leading scorer, averaging 17.3 points while shooting 46.3 percent from the floor and 42.9 percent from downtown. He has scored 20 or more points in three of his last five games, including a career-best 30-point effort against Army West Point (Nov. 23), and drilled the game-winning 3-pointer with 1.1 seconds left in overtime against Colgate (Nov. 26). Hickman, the Ivy League Player of the Week (Nov. 28), became the first Lion other than Maodo Lo or Alex Rosenberg to record 30 points since 2011 when Noruwa Agho netted 31 against Brown.
Senior forward Luke Petrasek is off to a fine start as well, averaging 16.3 points and 7.9 rebounds. Petrasek netted a career-high 27 points against Hofstra. Petrasek is the team’s leading returning scorer after posting 10.2 points on 44.2-percent shooting from downtown in 2015-16.
LUKAS WITH THE LID OFF
Sophomore Lukas Meisner has quietly put together four consecutive solid performances, averaging 10.0 points (15-of-23 shooting) and 6.0 rebounds during this stretch.