Nov. 26, 2003


Norse improve to 3-3 with non-conference victory

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - Jesse Rupe scored 16 of his game-high 17 points in the first half Wednesday night as Northern Kentucky University posted a 92-60 victory against Thomas More College in Regents Hall.

Rupe, a 6-foot-10 senior center, made 7 of 9 shots from the field as NKU (3-3) defeated Thomas More for the 18th consecutive time. He also finished with four blocked shots and eight rebounds in 21 minutes of action.

Mike Kelsey added 14 points for the Norse, who lead the all-time series with Thomas More by a 27-5 margin. NKU has not lost to Thomas More since the 1980-81 season, when the Saints defeated the Norse by a 61-52 score in Regents Hall.

NKU held a one-point lead (13-12) with 11:22 remaining in the first half, but Rupe sparked a 10-2 run with eight points to give the Norse a 23-14 advantage. He finished off the first half with a tip-in bucket as NKU took a 37-27 lead at the break.

In the second half, NKU held Thomas More to just 27 percent shooting from the field and led by as many as 34 points. Kevin Schappell came off the bench and added 12 points for the Norse, and Brian Lewin finished with 11 points.

Kevin Reinhardt scored 10 points for the Norse, who won the rebounding battle by a 54-36 margin. Pat Cary grabbed a career-high 12 rebounds and scored eight points for NKU, while teammate Adrian Wilkinson added nine points and five rebounds.

Chris Thompson led Thomas More (1-2) with 12 points, and Marcus Johnson added 11 points for the Saints.

NKU will begin Great Lakes Valley Conference play this weekend when the University of Missouri-St. Louis visits Regents Hall at 3:15 p.m. Saturday. The Norse will also play host to Quincy University at 7:45 p.m. next Monday (Dec. 1).


Jesse Rupe