The Grand Canyon, enemy of the valley, will be next for Arizona State men’s basketball

Next: The Grand Canyon in the State of Arizona

To place: Desert Financial Arena

Time: 7:30 p.m. (Thursday)

TV: Pac-12 network. Radio: ESPN 620AM/98.7FM

Last meeting: The teams played in December of last season at the GCU with ASU winning 71-70, the difference being a 3-pointer from Remy Martin with nine seconds left.

About the Lopes: GCU (8-1) is off to its best start since moving to Division I. It has a five-game winning streak, with the last loss coming Nov. 22 to Wyoming 68-61. The Lopes last played Sunday, beating Mississippi Valley State 91-44. Jovan Blacksher Jr. (16.1 ppg, 4.1 apg) is the team’s leading scorer with a best-of-25 against Texas-San Antonio. The second-highest scorer is guard Holland Woods (13.4 ppg), a transfer from ASU who is now playing with his third school in as many years. GCU was 17-7 a year ago, making the NCAA Tournament where it lost to Iowa 86-74 in the first round.

About Sun Devils: ASU (3-6) is coming off a 69-67 overtime win over Oregon that ended a five-game losing streak. DJ Horne (13.1 points per game) was the hero of this game with 23 points including a 3 pointer at the end of regulation which sent the game into overtime. He is averaging 16 points over the last five games. Senior forward Kimani Lawrence (11.1 ppg, 70 rpg) is the team’s most veteran player and has four double-doubles this season. Toledo transfer Marreon Jackson leads the team in assists (40) and is second in steals (10). Second-year forward Marcus Bagley (knee) is not expected to play. This will make the seventh consecutive game in which he has been absent.

Contact the reporter at [email protected] or 602 444-4783. Follow her on Twitter @MGardnerSports.

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