ODU off to hot start, set to face WKU for first place on Thursday

NORFOLK (WAVY) – The record will indicate Old Dominion has been perfect through three games of their Conference USA schedule. True, the Monarchs (12-3, 3-0 Conference USA) are undefeated in league play, but they are far from perfect.

As head coach Jeff Jones simply put it on Monday, “We’ve got to play better.”

ODU needed overtime to beat Rice (4-13, 1-3) last week, and let a 10-point lead slip away in a 63-60 win at North Texas on Saturday. “We’ve played hard. We’ve played plenty hard, but we’ve got to be more efficient offensively.” said Jones. “When we get a chance to take a lead from 7 or 9 points up to 15 or 16, we’ve got to do it.”

That unbeaten mark will be put to the test at the Ted Constant Center on Thursday night, when the Monarchs welcome Western Kentucky, who’s also unbeaten in league play. “I’m extremely excited, because it’s games like these you live for,” said senior forward Brandan Stith.

The 6-7, 240-pound forward will be key, if the Monarchs hope to contain what is a very talented Hilltoppers roster.