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Freshmen Jason Hawthorne, John Schneider, and the rest of the Leathernecks play host to Savannah State Wednesday (Jan. 2) and Summit League foe IUPUI Saturday (Jan. 5).
Courtesy: WIU Visual Productions Center
Freshmen Jason Hawthorne, John Schneider, and the rest of the Leathernecks play host to Savannah State Wednesday...
Men's Basketball Brings in New Year this Week at Home
Courtesy: Western Illinois Athletics  
Release: Thursday 01/04/2013
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Western Illinois welcomes Summit League foe IUPUI to Macomb on Saturday (Jan. 5)...The two teams are slated to begin action at 7 p.m. inside Western Hall.



WHO: IUPUI Jaguars (6-12, 1-4) at Western Illinois Leathernecks (11-3, 4-0)
Macomb, Ill. • Western Hall (5,139)
Saturday, Jan. 5 at 7 p.m.
IUPUI leads 28-9


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WIU Athletics

Preseason Information:
2012-13 Information Guide/Record Book
2012-13 Quick Facts

2012-13 Schedule
2012-13 Outlook
2012-13 Season Preview
2011-12 Highlights

Western Illinois just missed the’s Mid-Major Top 25 poll this week (Dec. 31), receiving 73 votes...The 25th ranked team in the poll (Bryant) earned 86 votes.

The Leathernecks finished the month of December with a 6-0 record...It was the first time Western finished the month of December undefeated in its Division I history, and the first time since the Leathernecks went 8-0 in December during the 1957-58 season.

Western Illinois has not lost a game at home this season, a perfect 6-0 inside Western Hall...The Leathernecks are also undefeated in neutral site games with a perfect 2-0 mark (vs. Buffalo & Yale).

BEST START SINCE: Western is off to its best start in its NCAA Division I history...No Western Illinois team has started a season 11-3 or better since the 1979-80 season when that Leatherneck team also started 11-3...The last time a Western Illinois team started 12-3 was the 1957-58 season.

STREAKING: The Leathernecks picked up their eighth straight victory last Wednesday against Savannah State, a winning streak that started over a month ago on November 29th at South Dakota...The last time the Leathernecks earned eight or more straight wins was during the 1997-98 season Western won nine straight games.

WIN AFTER WIN AFTER WIN: Western’s eight game winning streak ranks tied for 10th nationally with Butler, Louisville, and VCU...Duke, Michigan and Wyoming have all won 13 straight, leading the country.

The last time the Leathernecks started conference play 4-0 or better was the 1997-98 team which kicked-off conference play 6-0...The 1997-98 team’s 6-0 conference start is Western’s best start in league play in its Division I history.

WHAT’S IN A WESTERN WIN?: A win would mark the 1,214th victory in program history...A win would mark head coach Jim Molinari’s 59th victory at Western, and his 282nd victory all-time as a head coach...A win would be Western’s 10th-ever over IUPUI......A win would mark the Leathernecks’ ninth straight.

IN THE NATION (As of 1/3/13):
Western ranks in the top 10 of two national categories, third in defensive scoring, having held its opponents to 50.9 points per game, and fourth in personal fouls per game, having committed only 12.7 per game...The Leathernecks also rank in the top 100 of six other categories... 29th in field goal percentage defense (37.9),
45th in blocked shots per game (4.9), 46th in winning percentage (78.6), 48th in field goal percentage (46.7), 80th in turnovers per game (12.6), and 86th in scoring margin (8.1).

CLARK AND PARKS NATION (As of 1/3/13): Seniors Ceola Clark III and Terell Parks rank in the top 100 of five national categories...Parks ranks 13th in blocked shots per game (2.86), 50th in rebounds per game (9.0), 52nd in field goal percentage (53.8), and 92nd in double doubles (3.0)...Clark ranks 74th in assist/turnover ratio (2.24).

LAST TIME OUT: The Fighting Leathernecks trailed Savannah State 23-12 at halftime,  but outscored the Tigers 27-12 in the second half, and held SSU to five points in the final 12 minutes of play to pick up their eighth straight win and improve to 11-3 on the season.

The 11-3 start is Western’s best start since the 1979-80 season, and its eight consecutive victories is the most since the 1997-98 Leathernecks won nine straight.

Savannah State (5-8) pressured the Leathernecks throughout the first half, forcing nine Western turnovers while the Leathernecks shot just 33% from the field. Western came out hot early in the second and played defense as they crawled their way back to even things 33-33 with two minutes to play.

An Adam Link free throw gave the Leathernecks their first lead of the game with just over a minute to play, and Western was able to hold off the Tigers until the final buzzer sounded.

Link was the only Leatherneck to score double figures, recording 10 points on 3-of-3 shooting from the field, and going 4-of-4 from the free throw line.

Terell Parks tallied nine points in the win to go along with his eight rebounds and career-high seven blocks.

Don McAvoy III and Jack Houpt each finished with six points.

Western ended up shooting 44.4% from the field, while the Tigers shot just 32.6% from the floor.

The Leathernecks entered the game ranked fifth in the country in personal fouls (13.1 per game), and committed 16 less fouls than Savannah State Wednesday, 24-8.

Khiry White led the Tigers with 10 points.

IUPUI enters Saturday’s game with a 6-12 overall record and are 1-3 in Summit League play...The Jaguars most recently lost at Maryland on New Year’s day, 63-81...Prior to that, they split Summit League action at home, defeating Fort Wayne and falling to Oakland...IUPUI has three players that average 10-plus points per game: John Hart (14.2), Mitchell Patton (13.7), and Ian Chiles (10.3)...They also have three players that pull down five or more rebounds per game: Donovan Gibbs (6.1), Patton (5.4), and Lyonell Gaines (5.1).

The Jaguars are coached by Todd Howard (Louisville ‘93) who is in his second season at the helm and owns a 20-30 overall record as a head coach at IUPUI.

THE SERIES: Western trails IUPUI in the all-time series, 28-9...Last season the Leathernecks and Jaguars split, with each team winning at home...The Leathernecks defeated the Jaguars at home with a Remy Roberts-Burnett game-winning three as time expired on Jan. 28...Western has won two of the last 28 meetings...The Leathernecks won seven of the first nine meetings between the two teams.

UP NEXT: Western concludes its home schedule next Wednesday (Jan. 9) versus Greenville College.

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