PREVIEW: Cougars Take on Panthers in OVC West Battle
SIUE (7-11, 3-5) vs.
Eastern Illinois (6-16, 3-6)
Sat., Feb. 2, 7 p.m.
Tonight is the final game of three-game home stand for SIUE. The Cougars are 6-3 at home this season.
LAST TIME OUT
SIUE erased a 10-point second-half deficit before falling to UT Martin 65-62 last Saturday.The Cougars shot 33.3 percent (9-27) in the first half and connected on only 2 of 9 attempts from three-point range and trailed 34-28 at the break. UT Martin extended the lead to eight thanks to a Jeremy Washington layup just 38 seconds into the half. A three-pointer by UT Martin's Terrance Smith with 16:07 left gave the Skyhawks their largest lead of the night at 43-33. A 19-9 run by the Cougars pulled SIUE even with UT Martin (52-52) with 6:09 to play in the game. The Skyhawks pushed their lead to five before Jerome Jones hit a three to make it 57-55 with 3:59 left. Jones splashed home his third three-pointer of the night to make it 60-59 SIUE with 2:05 left. It was the Cougars' only lead.
SCOUTING THE PANTHERS
EIU has won its last three games following a season-worst 12-game losing streak. The Panthers defeated Southeast Missouri last Saturday in overtime. The Panthers have limited their opponents to just 30.1 rebounds per contest which is the lowest in the OVC. Junior transfer Sherman Blanford leads EIU in scoring (10.9 ppg) and rebounding (6.0 rpg).
This is the sixth meeting all-time in the series between the Cougars and Panthers. This is only the third meeting since the Cougars joned the OVC. Both of those meetings came last year, and EIU won each of those contests.