Game Day: UE-Illinois State

Evansville Aces (12-8, 5-3) at Illinois State Redbirds (11-9, 2-6)

Missouri Valley Conference Game 9/18

Game Time: 7 p.m. Saturday

Location: Redbird Arena in Normal, Ill.

Broadcast: WUEV 91.5 FM, Fox Sports Plus

Live Coverage: Follow on Twitter (@ECP_Lintner)

Game Notes: Click here for UE and here for Illinois State

Spread: Illinois State -6.5 at Vegas Insider

UE’s Probable Starters: G Troy Taylor, G Ned Cox, F Colt Ryan, F Lewis Jones, C Egidijus Mockevicius

Illinois State’s Probable Starters: G Bryant Allen, G Johnny Hill, G Tyler Brown, G/F John Wilkins, F Jackie Carmichael

Last Meeting: UE beat Illinois State 79-71 at the Ford Center on Jan. 21, 2012.

Series History: The Redbirds are 29-16 all-time against the Aces and have won 17 of 20 meetings on their home court. UE last won in Redbird Arena in January of 2011.

Story Clippings:

Jan. 26: Focus on defense has Illinois State shooting for another win

Jan. 25: Mockevicius starting to become a force inside

Jan. 23: Aces surge past Bradley behind late 3-pointers

Jan. 23: Despite not making 3-pointer, Illinois State beats Indiana State

Notable:

—After passing Ed Smallwood for third on UE’s all-time scoring list, senior Colt Ryan is now 97 points from becoming just the third player in Aces history to hit 2,000 points. Ryan is averaging 21.9 points since a Dec. 22 game at Butler.

—Freshman Egidijus Mockevicius’ 10-rebound effort against Bradley marked a career high. Nine of those came in the second half and five on the offensive glass. Mockevicius is averaging 19-plus minutes a game in MVC play as compared to 15 in non-conference games.

—UE has gone from a team that made better than 43 percent of its 3-pointers early in the season to one that’s shooting just 30.3 percent from beyond the arc in MVC play. The Aces hit both their 3s — from freshman Adam Wing and Ryan — in the final 10 minutes of the Bradley win.

—Illinois State, which started MVC play 0-6, lost those games by an average seven points and came on within the last week to beat both Southern Illinois and Indiana State.

—The Redbirds are 35th in the country in field goal percentage at 46.6 percent and even better on shots inside the arc, where they connect on 53.9 percent of attempts. Illinois State is also 22nd nationally in assists with 16 a game.

—Senior forward Jackie Carmichael averages 17.9 points and 9.2 rebounds per game to lead Illinois State. Carmichael ranks 12th among the NCAA’s active players in double-doubles with 29 of them and has recorded one in seven of the Redbirds’ last 10 games.

—After missing Illinois State’s Jan. 12 loss to Drake due to a suspension for conduct detrimental to the team, senior guard Tyler Brown came back to score 14 points against Wichita State and 22 against Southern Illinois. Brown, who averages 15.3 points, has scored as many as 36 this season in a November victory over Northwestern.

—Illinois State and UE coaches will join coaches around the country Saturday by wearing sneakers with their usual game day attire in support of the American Cancer Society’s Coaches vs. Cancer Suits and Sneakers weekend.

Quotable:

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