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December 31, 2008

USI starts tough two weeks Friday
Eagles restart GLVC action against Saint Joseph's


EVANSVILLE, Ind. The 18th-ranked University of Southern Indiana men's basketball team begins a tough two weeks stretch Friday when it hosts Saint Joseph's College to restart GLVC action. The next two weeks include conference games against the University of Indianapolis (Sunday), 17th-ranked Northern Kentucky University (January 8), 13th-ranked Bellarmine University (January 10), and 11th-ranked Kentucky Wesleyan College (January 13).

The Screaming Eagles have been on a roll for the last month-and-a-half, posting an 11-game winning streak and going 5-0 in December. The winning streak is the longest by the Eagles since the 2004-05 squad won a school record 17 in a row.

USI (12-2, 2-0 GLVC) will be hosting Saint Joseph's, Indianapolis, and Northern Kentucky to finish its second six-game homestand of the year. The Eagles have been dominating at the PAC, averaging 98.4 points per game and allowing only 59.0 points per contest.

Overall, the Eagles are led by junior forward Brandon Russ (Cincinnati, Ohio) with 14.1 points per game. Russ was on fire in December, shooting 81.1 percent from the field (30-37) in the five games.

The Pumas of Saint Joseph's (7-3, 1-1 GLVC) come to Evansville on a four-game winning streak of their own. The four-game winning streak, which includes a win over KWC, came on the heels of three game skid.

Saint Joseph's is led by junior guard Austin Peebles, who is averaging 13.4 points per game. Peebles also is averaging 15.0 points per contest in the Pumas' first two conference games.

USI has the advantage in the all-time series with Saint Joseph's, 42-20, but the Pumas took the only meeting in 2007-08, 75-57, at the PAC.

The Greyhounds of UIndy (5-6, 0-2 GLVC), who play at KWC before coming the PAC, are in their first season under first year head coach and former USI All-American Stan Gouard. UIndy has been playing better over the last five games, going 4-1after starting the year 1-5.

UIndy is led by senior guard Keith Radcliff, who is posting 15.4 points per game. Radcliff also is dropping in 14.5 points per contest in the first two league games.

USI leads the all-time series with UIndy, 44-15, after the Eagles won last year's meeting, 81-76, at the PAC.

Tip off for the USI-Saint Joseph's match-up is 7:30 p.m., while USI's Sunday game against Indianapolis is at 3:15 p.m.

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information

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