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Zeke Upshaw shines for Hofstra during down season

Hofstra's Zeke Upshaw, left, looks to dribble past

Hofstra's Zeke Upshaw, left, looks to dribble past Towson's Mike Burwell during the first half of an NCAA men's basketball game at Mack Sports Complex Feb. 22, 2014. Credit: James Escher

Putting Zeke Upshaw's season for Hofstra in perspective isn't a hard thing to do. Just look at the numbers.

The 6-6 guard is averaging 19.7 points per game, third best in the CAA. He’s had three games of 30 or more points, including 37 in an overtime loss to Richmond in November.

It’s an impressive feat considering he averaged just 1.6 points per game at Illinois State, including 2.5 per game last season. Upshaw has 591 points in 30 games for the Pride. His 82 three-pointers this season is tied for fourth on Hofstra's all-time single-season list.

The Illinois State transfer, now a graduate student, had 28 points, including a school record-tying seven three-pointers in an 83-77 loss to second-place Towson on Sunday.

While Hofstra (8-22, 4-11 CAA) likely make the tournament unless they win their conference tournament, the Pride, thanks to the dynamic play of Upshaw and fellow transfer student Dion Nesmith (13.2 ppg), could play the role of giant killer.

And let’s not forget that Upshaw has aspirations of playing professional basketball. Pride coach Joe Mihalich told Newsday’s Mark Herrmann that several teams from overseas have inquired about him.

Upshaw will have at least two more chances to shine, as the Pride hosts James Madison in their final regular-season game on Saturday at 7 p.m. Hofstra’s next game after that will be against UNC-Wilmington in a CAA play-in game on March 7.



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