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Norse (9-4, 4-1 GLVC) play Missouri-St. Louis at 8:30 p.m. Thursday

Vincent Humphrey averages 10.5 ppg

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - The Northern Kentucky University men’s basketball team will play a road game at Missouri-St. Louis at 8:30 p.m. Thursday.

NKU is 9-4 overall, 4-1 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference. The Norse are tied for first place with Saint Joseph’s in the GLVC East standings.

Missouri-St. Louis is 8-4 overall, 2-3 in the GLVC. The Rivermen are fifth in the GLVC West standings.

NKU will also meet Missouri-Rolla at 4 p.m. Saturday at Rolla, Mo. Missouri-Rolla is 2-11 overall, 0-5 in the GLVC.

Both games this week will be broadcast live on the Internet at and on WIOK (107.5 FM).

BIG SPURTS HURT NKU: Southern Indiana used a pair of big runs at the start of each half Saturday to post a 75-56 win over NKU in Regents Hall.

The Screaming Eagles scored the first nine points of the game, and they later began the second half with a 10-0 run.

BACK IN ACTION: NKU regained the services of injured starters Aaron Smith and Kevin Reinhardt last Saturday.

Smith, a junior guard who had not played since suffering a fractured foot Nov. 19 against Saginaw Valley State, drained a 3-pointer in five minutes of action Saturday.

Reinhardt, who had not played since the Dec. 10 game at Brigham Young, netted five points in 11 minutes against Southern Indiana. The junior forward is second on the team in scoring at 12.0 points per game.

TOUGH POINTS: Vincent Humphrey was the only NKU player to score in double figures against Southern Indiana last Saturday. The sophomore forward finished with 12 points and five rebounds.

Humphrey enters Thursday averaging 10.5 ppg. He is also shooting 43.8 percent from 3-point range and 79.2 percent from the free-throw line.

ASSIST TO FINNELL: Freshman point guard Billy Finnell leads NKU with 55 assists. He also averages 7.8 ppg and ranks No. 2 on the team with 17 steals.

SCHAPPELL FROM DOWNTOWN: NKU’s Kevin Schappell is tied with Daniel Cox of Indianapolis for first place in the GLVC in 3-point shooting at 51.9 percent. Schappell, who averages 13.6 ppg, is 27-for-52 from long range this season. He is No. 2 in the GLVC in free-throw shooting at .894.

Gavin Ludgood is scoring 10.1 ppg

NKU’S INCREDIBLE HAWK: Mark Hawkins scored a career-high 15 points and made four 3-pointers as NKU rallied past Kentucky Wesleyan, 71-63, last Thursday night in Regents Hall. The sophomore guard from Finneytown High School drained a trio of 3-pointers in the first half en route to scoring 12 points to keep the Norse in the game.

Hawkins, who averages 4.7 ppg, finished 4-for-6 from long range against the Panthers. He also grabbed six rebounds. He is 14-for-39 from 3-point range this season.

NORSE INSIDE FORCE: NKU senior center Gavin Ludgood averages 10.1 ppg and has connected on 55.7 percent of his shots from the field. Ludgood leads NKU in rebounding at 6.5 rpg.

ABOUT MISSOURI-ST. LOUIS: The Rivermen are led by senior forward Jonathan Griffin, who averages 17.5 ppg and 7.0 rebounds. He also has a team-leading 47 assists and 28 steals. Troy Slaten averages 14.5 ppg and leads the team in 3-pointers made with 32.

THE LAST TIME AGAINST MISSOURI-ST. LOUIS: On Feb. 26, 2005, NKU seniors Pat Cary, Steve Purdon and Mike Kelsey combined to score 59 points in their final appearance at home as the Norse held off a second-half comeback by Missouri-St. Louis for a 91-79 victory in Regents Hall.

NKU went on a 26-8 run over the last 6:17 of the first half, which ended on a 3-pointer by Purdon with 42 seconds remaining. NKU shot 63.3 percent from the field and 60 percent from the 3-point line to go into the break with a 20-point lead (57-37).

NKU built a 24-point lead in the second half and held off a late rally by the Rivermen to sweep the season series. Earlier in the season in St. Louis, the Norse posted a 63-55 win over Missouri-St. Louis in the Mark Twain Building.

ABOUT MISSOURI-ROLLA: The Miners, in their first season of competition in the GLVC, are 2-11 overall. Missouri-Rolla is 0-5 in the GLVC and has lost eight straight games heading into a Thursday night contest with Bellarmine.