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PREVIEW: Cougars Begin Tournament with Friday Tilt at Indiana

Dec. 15, 2010

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SIUE (2-9) at
Indiana (7-2)
Fri., Dec. 17, 6 p.m. CT
Bloomington, Ind.

TV: Big Ten Network
Live Audio
Live Stats

THE SERIES
Series Record: First meeting
Last Meeting: None
First Meeting: None
Record at SIUE: 0-0
Record at IU: 0-0
Neutral: 0-0
Largest SIUE win: None
Largest IU win: None
Current Streak: N/A

TOURNAMENT TIME
The Las Vegas Classic represents the third consecutive season the Cougars have played in an in-season tournament. SIUE travels to Indiana and Northern Iowa this weekend for the first two games of the tournament before heading to Las Vegas for the final two games. SIUE will face Longwood on Dec. 22 before meeting either South Carolina State or The Citadel Dec. 23.

TONIGHT'S OPPONENT
Indiana is a member of the Big Ten Conference. The Hoosiers are 7-2 this year, including a perfect 7-0 at home. Sophomore Christian Watford (17.9) leads a trio of Hoosiers who average in double figures. Watford also paces IU in rebounding with 6.2 a game.

VERSUS THE BIG TEN
SIUE is 0-4 versus Big Ten opponents under Head Coach Lennox Forrester. SIUE is 0-8 all-time against members of the Big Ten. This is the second of three games against Big Ten opponents for the Cougars. SIUE fell at Iowa earlier in the year.

ROAD WARRIORS
Tonight's game is the first of six consecutive road games for the Cougars, the longest such stretch of the season. SIUE does not return home until a Jan. 8 game against South Dakota.

FREE BASKETBALL
After not playing an overtime game since 2008, the Cougars have played overtime twice in their last three games. SIUE prevailed in double overtime over Kennesaw State Saturday after falling at home to Middle Tennessee Dec. 4.

CHITT CHATT
Junior Cornelius Chatt leads the team in scoring (11.1). He scored a career-high 22 points at Tennessee Tech. Chatt has scored in double figures seven times this year. Chatt leads the team in field goals (46) and attempts (128).

NICE DEBUT
Freshman forward Michael Messer has had a successful start to his college career. Messer poured in a career-high 24 points in the win over Kennesaw State. He is now fourth in scoring (8.4 ppg) and second in rebounding (3.8 rpg) among regulars. He is second on the team with a .538 field goal percentage.

BIG NUMBERS FOR BUNDALO
Nikola Bundalo was named adidas Athlete of the Week after scoring 17 points last week vs. Middle Tennessee. Against MacMurray, he recorded his second double-double of the season with 25 points and 13 rebounds. Both career highs. He is third on the team in scoring (10.6) and leads in rebounding (5.7).

BUNDALO'S CAREER
The senior center has enjoyed a fine career in a Cougar uniform. He is now 31st on the career scoring list with 710 points. His career field goal percentage of .607 is sixth best. He has 87 blocked shots in his career, ranking fourth.

COUNTING ON COREY
Junior point guard Corey Wickware is second on the team in scoring with an average of 10.9 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 seven of his last nine games.

GET TO THE POINT
SIUE has scored 65 points or less in all nine losses this season. In six of those losses, the Cougars have scored either 64 or 65 points.

CONSISTENCY
Messer and Chatt are the only two players to have scored at least a field goal in every game.

SHARING THE WEALTH
Eight different players have led the team in scoring this season. Bundalo and Chatt have each led the team three times. Wickware has led the team twice. Eight different players have also led the team in rebounding. Bundalo has led the team five times. Abel Tillman has led the team in rebounding twice this year.

FROM WAY DOWNTOWN
Six different players have at least three three-pointers this year. Chatt leads the team with 18 followed by Wickware's 17. Chatt also has attempted the most three-pointers (70).

MISSING THE MARK
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.

SIGN `EM UP
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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