Men’s Basketball on the Road for Little Rock
SIUE Cougars (15-9, 6-5 OVC)
at Little Rock Trojans (7-17, 3-8 OVC)
Saturday, February 4th, 3:30 p.m.
Jack Stephens Center (5,600), Little Rock, Arkansas
LAST TIME OUT: Shamar Wright scored his 1,000th career point and Ray'Sean Taylor collected his first double-double of the season as SIUE downed UT Martin 89-75 on Thursday night at First Community Arena. The Cougars used a hot start with a 14-2 run to open the game, capturing their 15th win on the season and sixth since beginning conference play. SIUE would take its largest lead of the night at 28 points under two minutes of play in the second half. The Cougars shot 55 percent (33-66) in the contest, its second highest shooting percentage on the season, for a victory over the Skyhawks. Four players finished the game scoring in double-figures: Taylor (27), Damarco Minor (16), S. Wright (15) and DeeJuan Pruitt (11).
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WRIGHT PLACE: Shamar Wright collected his 1,000th career point Thursday vs. UT Martin. He currently is sitting on 1,008 career points, which is 17th all-time and fourth in the Division I era at SIUE. He scored a season-high 19 points against Southern Indiana and is averaging a career-best 10.9 points per game. He grabbed a career-best 12 rebounds at Saint Louis. He dished out a career-high 11 assists against VMI in November.
TAYLOR'S RETURN: Taylor leads the team in scoring and is fifth in the OVC at 15.5 points per game. He scored a career-best 30 points at Tennessee Tech last Thursday. He has scored in double figures in 19 of 24 games this year and 38 of 45 in his career. Taylor returned to game action this year for first time since tearing his right anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in SIUE's game at Southeast Missouri Jan. 29, 2022. He previously sat out the 2020-21 season with the same injury, which he sustained in August 2020.
PRUITT PROVING IT: Pruitt is living up to his preseason All-OVC selection. He scored a career-high 24 points at Eastern Illinois. He grabbed a season-best 15 rebounds at home against USI. He is 24th in the OVC in scoring at 11.4 points and third in the league at 8.9 rebounds per game. In OVC games he is averaging 10.8 rebounds, which ranks second. He has pulled down at least 10 rebounds in each of his last four games and seven of his last nine games.
BLOCK PARTY: SIUE tied the school record for blocks with 11 against Illinois Tech. The Cougars lead the OVC in blocks at 4.0 per game, which ranks 80th in the NCAA. Four Cougars appear in the top 13 individually in the OVC.
DO IT FOR FREE: SIUE leads the OVC in free throw percentage at .742. The Cougars lead the league in free throws made per game at 16.5, which ranks 18th in the NCAA and attempts at 22.3, which is 22nd nationally. SIUE has had seven games this year with at least 30 free throw attempts. The Cougars attempted 41 free throws Jan.5 vs. Tennessee State, which was the most in a single game since 2018.
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