Morton attacks the basket during NKU’s 74-59 win at
Indianapolis last week. Morton, a 6-foot-4 senior forward
from Lexington, Ky., leads the Norse in scoring at 13.5 points
Ky. - Northern Kentucky University returns home this week for two
crucial Great Lakes Valley Conference games, beginning with a Thursday
showdown against defending league champion Southern Indiana at 7:45
NKU, which is
11-2 overall and atop the GLVC East Division standings with a 5-1
record, also plays host to Kentucky Wesleyan at 3:15 p.m. Saturday.
The Panthers (13-2 overall, 4-1 GLVC) trail NKU by a half game in
the GLVC East. Kentucky Wesleyan also owns an eight-game winning
streak entering this week.
Both of those
games this week will be televised live on ICN-6.
SWEEP BIG ROAD TRIP: NKU remained unbeaten (5-0) on the
road this season by defeating Indianapolis (74-59) and Saint Joseph’s
(58-55) last week.
PHENOM: The Norse pulled out the win at Saint Joseph’s
behind the clutch shooting of freshman guard Dennis Gagai, who buried
a pair of 3-pointers in the final 1:24 of the game. He also made
two free throws with 7.1 seconds remaining to extend NKU’s
lead to 58-55, and the Norse survived a 3-point attempt at the buzzer
to walk out of the Scharf Alumni Fieldhouse with the victory.
with 14 points to lead NKU. He also made four shots from 3-point
range. The Ironton, Ohio, native averages 11.8 points per game and
leads the GLVC in 3-point shooting at 54.7 percent.
HOOPSTER: NKU junior guard David McFarland continues to
lead the GLVC in assist-to-turnover ratio with an eye-popping 7.71
average, which ranks No. 2 nationally. He has 54 assists and just
seven turnovers the entire season.
RULES: NKU features four players scoring in double figures,
led by senior forward Harrison Morton’s 13.5 ppg. Senior guard
Anthony Teague is scoring 12.0 ppg and has made a team-leading 35
shots from 3-point range. Junior forward DeAaron Williams averages
10.7 ppg and is shooting 65.9 percent from the field. Sophomore
guard Scott Bibbins is scoring 8.9 ppg, and senior forward Vincent
Humphrey averages 8.4 ppg. Bibbins leads NKU in free-throw shooting
(.935), while Humphrey is second on the team in that category at
SUCCESS: NKU is No. 1 in the GLVC in both 3-point shooting
percentage (.421) and 3-pointers made per game (9.69).
NEARS 70 WINS: NKU head coach Dave Bezold is now 66-37
in four years. He figures to reach the 70-win plateau faster than
any other coach in Norse history. Former NKU head coach Mike Beitzel
reached 70 wins in the middle of his fifth season (117 games) and
is currently the fastest to 70 victories with the Norse.
SOUTHERN INDIANA: The Screaming Eagles are 9-4 overall,
3-2 in the GLVC. Southern Indiana is in second place in the GLVC
Norman Plummer leads the GLVC in scoring (21.0 ppg) and is No. 3
in rebounding (10.8 rpg). The former University of Dayton standout
was named the Division II Bulletin National Player of the Month
Anthony Teague launches a 3-pointer against Indianapolis last
week. Teague averages 12.0 ppg and leads the Norse in 3-pointers
made with 35. The 6-5 senior also tops NKU with 11 blocked
TEAM: Southern Indiana has defeated NKU eight consecutive
times. The Norse have not posted a win against the Screaming Eagles
since Jan. 10, 2004, when NKU held on for an 81-80 victory over
then-No. 1 Southern Indiana in Regents Hall.
LAST TIME AGAINST SOUTHERN INDIANA: On March 4, 2007, in
the championship game of the GLVC Tournament, Southern Indiana rallied
for a 63-61 victory over NKU at Evansville, Ind.
Eagles - holding a 62-61 lead in the closing seconds of the game
- had to sweat out a last-second shot attempt by NKU’s Billy
Finnell, who missed a driving, off-balance shot from the right side
of the lane. Finnell's shot attempt hit the side of the backboard
and was rebounded by Rashard Sullivan.
NKU fouled Kenny
Love with 0.1 seconds remaining, and he made the second of two free
throws to extend Southern Indiana’s lead to 63-61. The Norse
attempted a full-court pass that was intercepted, and Southern Indiana
escaped with the victory.
NKU built a
56-46 lead with 9:52 remaining on Harrison Morton's basket, but
Southern Indiana countered with a 12-3 run to cut the Norse advantage
to 59-58 with 2:11 left. Screaming Eagle guard Kenny Page capped
the run by grabbing an offensive rebound and scoring while being
fouled. He converted the free throw, and NKU’s lead was down
to a point.
made a pair of free throws with 1:52 left to extend NKU’s
lead to 61-58, Southern Indiana turned the ball over and the Norse
appeared on their way to winning the GLVC title for the second time
in four years. Finnell, however, had a pass stolen by Love, who
raced down the floor for a layup that brought Southern Indiana to
within 61-60 with 1:17 remaining.
NKU still owned
that lead with less than a minute remaining when Sullivan missed
a short jumper. Page, however, again worked his way inside for an
offensive rebound and tipped in the miss to give Southern Indiana
a 62-61 advantage with 34 seconds on the clock.
LAST TIME AGAINST KENTUCKY WESLEYAN: On Feb. 15, 2007,
Steven Wright and Vincent Humphrey combined for 39 points as NKU
posted a 67-49 win over Kentucky Wesleyan in Regents Hall. In the
first meeting last season at Owensboro, Ky., NKU defeated Kentucky
Wesleyan, 76-65. Wright scored 16 points in that victory, while
Kevin Schappell added 14 points.
AGAINST THE PANTHERS: NKU owns six consecutive wins against
Kentucky Wesleyan. Norse head coach Dave Bezold is 6-0 against the