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PREVIEW: Cougars Face OVC's Tennessee Tech

Dec. 1, 2010

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Game #8
SIUE (1-6) at
Tennessee Tech (0-3)
Dec. 1 6 p.m.
Cookeville, Tenn.

Series Record: First Meeting
Last Meeting: n/a
First Meeting: n/a
Record at SIUE: 0-0
Record at TTU: 0-0
Neutral: 0-0
Largest n/a
Largest TTU win: n/a
Current Streak: n/a

Tennessee Tech is a member of the Ohio Valley Conference. The Golden Eagles are 0-3 this season but have yet to play at home. Juniors Kevin Murphy (10.3) and Zach Bailey (10.0) each average double figures. Murphy leads the team with five rebounds per night.

The Cougars are 1-8 against Ohio Valley Conference opponents under Head Coach Lennox Forrester. The lone win came December 31, 2008-a 70-69 win at Southeast Missouri. This year the Cougars are 0-2, losing to Morehead State and at Eastern Kentucky.

Nikola Bundalo turned a career night Nov. 20 against MacMurray. Bundalo recorded his second double-double of the season with 25 points and 13 rebounds. Both were career highs. He is second on the team in scoring (11.1) and leads in rebounding (5.9).

Junior point guard Corey Wickware is leading the team in scoring with an average of 12.7 points a night. The transfer from Wabash Community College scored a career-high 25 points in the Cougars' loss at Illinois State. Wickware has scored in double figures in five of his last six games.

Freshman forward Michael Messer has had a successful start to his college career. Messer has started six of the seven games this season and is fifth in scoring (7.4 ppg) and third in rebounding (3.3 rpg) among regulars.

Head Coach Lennox Forrester has announced that junior forward Mark Yelovich, the team's leading scorer each of the past two years, will miss the remainder of the season after a foot injury suffered in the opener against IPFW.

The Cougar Senior center has enjoyed a fine career in a Cougar uniform. He is now 37th on the career scoring list with 677 points. His career field goal percentage of .609 is sixth best. He has 83 blocked shots in his career, ranking fourth all-time.

The 2010-2011 season schedule features five games against teams that finished last season in among the top 100 in the RPI. The Cougars play nine games against teams that participated in the 2010 post-season, including facing two NCAA teams (Murray State, Northern Iowa).

Though not officially playing a full conference schedule, SIUE will play nine games against Ohio Valley Conference schools, including six home contests. The Cougars play home-and-home series with OVC opponents Eastern Kentucky, Murray State and Tennessee Tech. UT Martin, Morehead State and Southeast Missouri all play games at the Vadalabene Center this year.

The Cougars will play in a regular season tournament for the third consecutive year. This year SIUE will take part in the Las Vegas Classic December 17-23. SIUE travels to Indiana and Northern Iowa for the first two games of the tournament before heading to Las Vegas for the final two games.

SIUE won its first Division I era tournament last season, claiming the Drake Hy-Vee Classic in December. The Cougars defeated tournament-host Drake in the semifinals before knocking off Texas-Arlington in the championship game.

Coach Forrester announced Charles Joy has signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball for SIUE beginning with the 2011- 2012 season. Joy is a 6-4 forward at O'Fallon High School. He averaged 7.8 points and 5.8 rebounds a game last season, helping the Panthers to a 30-4 record and a fourth-place finish at the Class 4A state tournament. Joy also plays for the Southwest Illinois Jets AAU program.

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