January 04, 2005
USI opens new year with GLVC action
Eagles to play three games in five days
EVANSVILLE, Ind. – The 19th-ranked University of Southern Indiana men’s basketball team tips off 2005 with a pair of GLVC games this week at the Physical Activities Center. The Screaming Eagles will host Bellarmine University (7-4, 2-3 GLVC) Thursday at 7:30 p.m. and Northern Kentucky University (5-6, 2-4 GLVC) Saturday at 3:15 p.m. as games two and three of a four-game homestand.
USI (7-3, 4-1 GLVC) has played only once since December 21, defeating Anderson College, 94-61, at the PAC on December 31. The Eagles were led in the victory by senior center Randy Holbrook (St. Louis, Missouri), who had 23 points, and junior forward Chris Thompson (Starke, Florida), who posted a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
Senior guard Cris Brunson (Evansville, Indiana) and sophomore forward Geoff Van Winkle (Ferdinand, Indiana) rounded out the double figure scorers in the win with 14 points each.
Holbrook is tops on the Eagles with 14.3 ppg in 2004-05. He is followed by Thompson with 12.7 ppg and a team-best 9.2 rpg, while Van Winkle is third with 11.3 ppg. Holbrook and Van Winkle have been the hottest Eagles over the last six games with 14.7 ppg and 14.3 ppg, respectively.
Holbrook also has posted double figures in the scoring column seven times in nine games.
The Knights of Bellarmine come to USI after posting a 104-61 victory over Temple Baptist College Monday night. Bellarmine started the year with four straight wins, but is just 3-4 over the last seven games.
For the season, Bellarmine sophomore guard Matt Pait is posting a team-high 14.7 ppg. He is followed by sophomore guard Marcus Flynn and junior guard Matt Miller with 13.4 ppg and 13.0 ppg, respectively. Senior forward Nate Sexton is Bellarmine’s top player on the boards with 8.0 rpg.
USI leads the all-time series with Bellarmine, 38-24, and has won 10 of the last 11 meetings. The Eagles swept the season series last season, winning in Louisville, 71-60, and at the PAC, 113-69.
The Norse of NKU have struggled in the last seven games. NKU has lost its last four games and five their last six, finishing 2004 with a 69-58 loss at Northern Michigan University and a 79-69 loss at Michigan Tech University. The Norse will play the University of Missouri-St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri, Thursday before playing USI.
NKU junior forward Derek Smith leads the Norse in the scoring column with 12.7 ppg, while senior guard Mike Kelsey and freshman forward Harrison Morton are averaging 11.3 ppg each. Smith also leads the Norse on the boards with 5.2 rpg.
USI leads the all-time series with NKU, 36-16, and is 8-5 since 2000. The Eagles took two of three from the Norse in 2003-04, falling in Highland Heights, Kentucky, 81-80, before winning at the PAC, 74-66, and at the GLVC Tournament, 83-74.
The Eagles will conclude the four-game homestand Monday by hosting the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown (6-6) at 7:30 p.m.
Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information