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December 16, 2008

USI hosts future GLVC opponent on Saturday
Eagles are ranked 22nd nationally in latest national poll


EVANSVILLE, Ind. The University of Southern Indiana men's basketball team will give Screaming Eagles fans a glimpse at the future Saturday when it hosts 2009-10 GLVC newcomer Maryville University at the Physical Activities Center. Tip off is scheduled for 3 p.m.

USI (10-2) has been on fire since starting the season at the Disney Division II Tip-Off Classic, winning its last nine contests. The latest victim was Temple Baptist College, which lost to the Eagles by 73 points, 130-57, last Saturday.

The continuation of the winning streak has helped boost the Eagles up three slots in the NABC/Division II Top 25 to 22nd.

During the nine-game streak, the Eagles have averaged 93.7 points per game and have four players averaging in double figures. USI also has held the opponents to less than 70 points in eight of the nine games and to an average of 60.3 points per contest through the streak

USI junior forward Brandon Russ (Cincinnati, Ohio) has come off the to be the team's leading scorer during the winning streak and for the season. Russ, who is averaging 15.6 points per game in his last nine appearances, leads the team and ranks 13th in the GLVC this year with 14.1 points per contest.

Following Russ in scoring column this year is senior forward Anthony Pimble (Bronx, New York) and junior guard Marvin Gray (Freeport, Bahamas), who are posting 13.3 and 11.5 points per game, respectively. Pimble is dropping in 14 points per contest during the winning streak, while Gray is recording 12.8 points per in the last nine outings.

A big part of winning streak has been the Eagles' defensive surge. The Eagles lead the GLVC with 74 shot rejections, doubling their total of 2007-08, and are holding the opposition's field goal percentage to less than 40 percent (.387, 265-685).

USI junior forward Tyrone Bradshaw (Cincinnati, Ohio) leads the squad and the GLVC with 36 blocks this year. The 36 blocked shots are only 11 less than USI had as a team all of last year.

The Saints of Maryville (3-4) are visiting the PAC for the first time on Saturday. Maryville, which is scheduled to join the GLVC in 2009-10, will not be eligible to compete for conference championships until 2010-11.

The Saints have lost four of their last six since opening season with a victory. One of the losses came at the hands of the GLVC's Drury University, 69-66, in Springfield, Missouri.

Maryville is led by senior guard/forward Aaron Steinke with 12.3 points per game. He is followed by junior forward Matt Baker, who is posting 11.1 points per contest and is grabbing a team-high 6.7 rebounds per outing.

The game will be aired on ESPN 106.7FM, WPSR 90.7FM, and WSWI 820AM. Links to hear the games via internet can be found on

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information

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