Leathernecks Look to Return to Winning Ways Versus NDSU
Courtesy: Western Illinois Athletics  
Release: Thursday 01/18/2013
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ON TAP: The Western Illinois men’s basketball team will look to rebound from Thursday night’s home loss to SDSU when they play host to North Dakota State Saturday night inside Western Hall.


THE BREAKDOWN

THE MATCHUP

WHO: North Dakota State Bison (16-3, 7-0) at Western Illinois Leathernecks (14-4, 6-1)
WHERE:
Macomb, Ill. Western Hall (5,139)
WHEN:
Saturday, Jan. 19 at 7 p.m.
SERIES HISTORY:
NDSU leads 6-5


FOLLOW THE ACTION

Radio/Live Audio:

Classic 103 (102.7 FM)
Talent: Beau Spencer (play-by-play) & Aaron Viner (color)


Live Video:
Rocky Vision

Live Stats:
GoLeathernecks.com

Twitter:
@WIUAthletics


Facebook:

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


MID-MAJOR TOP 25: Western moved up four spots to #18 in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll Monday (Jan. 14)...The Leathernecks, who received 212 points, first appeared in the poll last Monday, January 7th at #22.

NCAA RPI:
The Leathernecks are 158th on the NCAA’s most recent RPI ratings.

#CC3:
Ceola Clark III sits tied for first in career triples made at Western with 216, and second in career three-pointers attempted with 499...Clark is one three away from moving into first on Western’s all-time three pointers list (Bill Heisler - 216).

3-POINT FG (DIVISION I)    Year
T1. 216 Ceola Clark III    2009-pr
T1. 216 Bill Heisler    1997-01
3. 181 Brandon Creason    1995-99

WESTERN HALL:
Western Illinois has lost only one game at home this season, owners of an 8-1 mark inside Western Hall.

BEST START SINCE:
Western is off to its best start in its NCAA Division I history...No Western Illinois team has started a season 14-4 or better since the 1957-58 season when the Leathernecks started 27-0.

STREAKING:
Earlier this season Western had earned 11 consecutive wins, a winning streak that started over a month ago on November 29th at South Dakota, and ended at home versus South Dakota State on Jan. 17...The last time the Leathernecks earned 11 or more straight wins was during the 1957-58 season when they put together 27 consecutive wins.

UNDEFEATED CONFERENCE RECORD:
The 2012-13 Western Illinois men’s basketball team kicked-off the season 6-0 in league play...The last time the Leathernecks started conference play 6-0 or better was during the 1997-98 team, in fact, the 199-7-98 team was the only other Western Illinois men’s basketball team to do so in the Division I era.

WHAT’S IN A WESTERN WIN?:
A win would mark the 1,217th victory in program history...A win would mark head coach Jim Molinari’s 62nd victory at Western, and his 285th victory all-time as a head coach...A win would be Western’s sixth-ever against North Dakota State, and fifth in their last six games...A win would mark the Leathernecks’ 12th in the past 13 games.

IN THE NATION (As of 1/17/13):
Western ranks in the top five of two national categories, third in personal fouls per game, having committed only 12.6 per game, and fourth in defensive scoring, having held its opponents to 52.6 points per game, The Leathernecks also rank in the top 100 of six other categories...26th in field goal percentage (47.5), 38th in turnovers per game (11.8), 42nd field goal percentage defense (38.9), 47th in winning percentage (77.8), 51st in blocked shots per game (4.8), and 59th in scoring margin (9.6).

CLARK AND PARKS NATION (As of 1/17/13):
Seniors Ceola Clark III and Terell Parks rank in the top 100 of five national categories...Parks ranks 20th in blocked shots per game (2.72), 22nd in double-doubles (7.0), 22nd in field goal percentage (57.0), 32nd in rebounds per game (9.4)...Clark ranks 31st in assist/turnover ratio (2.63).

A LOOK AT THE BISON:
North Dakota State enters Saturday’s game first in The Summit League with a 16-3 overall record, and 7-0 conference mark...The Bison most recently blasted the IUPUI Jaguars in Indianapolis, 78-40, giving them their eighth straight win...NDSU is led by Marshall Bjorkland and Lawrence Alexander who are averaging 12.9 and 10.5 points per game, respectively.

COACHING NORTH DAKOTA STATE:
The Bison are coached by Saul Phillips (Wisconsin-Platteville, 1996), who is in his sixth season, and owns a 100-70 overall coaching record at the helm.

THE SERIES:
North Dakota State leads the all-time series, 6-5...The Leathernecks, though, have won four of the last five meetings...Western went a perfect 3-0 against the Bison last season, including a first round win over NDSU in the league tournament.

LAST TIME OUT:
The Fighting Leatherneck fans showed up in full force Thursday evening (Jan. 17) inside Western Hall, but South Dakota State played spoiler, pulling away during the final three minutes of the contest on its way to a 59-53 win over Western Illinois.

The official attendance for the game was 4,163, the program’s highest since the 2005-06 season.

Western’s win streak comes to an end after 11 straight, while the Leathernecks fall to 14-4 overall and 6-1 in Summit League play. The Jackrabbits earn their third straight, improve to 14-6 overall and 5-2 in conference play.

The two teams battled throughout the entire matchup, with SDSU holding a slight edge for the majority of the time. There were a total of eight ties and 13 lead changes in the game. SDSU’s Chad White gave the Jackrabbits the advantage when he hit a three with 3:02 left in regulation to put the Jackrabbits up 53-50, a lead South Dakota State wouldn’t surrender.

Terell Parks led the way for Western, picking up his fourth straight double-double, and seventh of the year. The senior forward scored 14 points on 7-of-9 shooting, and grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds. Parks also had two assists, a block, a steal, and no turnovers.

Jack Houpt tallied a team-best 16 points on the evening, including four three-pointers. Houpt also had two assists and two steals.

The only other Leatherneck to score in double figures was Adam Link who finished with 13 points, seven rebounds and two assists.

Ceola Clark III finished with a team-high six assists, two steals, and knocked down his 216th career triple, moving him into a tie for first in program history.

SDSU out-shot the Leathernecks 51.2% - 42.3%. The Leathernecks also struggled from the free throw line, connecting on only 30.8% (4-of-13) of them, and beyond the arc, shooting just 27.8% (5-of-18).

Both teams totaled less than 10 turnovers, as Western committed six, and SDSU had nine.

Nate Wolters led all scorers with 22 and dished out six helpers.

WIN AFTER WIN AFTER WIN:
Earlier this season, Western earned 11 consecutive wins, which ranked tied for third nationally with Louisville, Butler and VCU.

UNDEFEATED DECEMBER:
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.

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