Eastern’s men’s basketball team is coming back from facing the two best teams in the conference in Murray State and Austin Peay, losing to both in the closing minutes. The Panthers return to Lantz Arena to face Eastern Kentucky, Morehead State and Southern Illinois Edwardsville, giving the Panthers three chances to rise in the conference standings.
Eastern Kentucky is in third-place in the OVC standings with an 8-2 conference record.
Eastern Kentucky’s lone conference losses come against Belmont and Morehead State. Both Belmont and Morehead State have defeated the Panthers during the Panthers road conference games.
Jomaru Brown is Eastern Kentucky’s leading scorer and the fifth leading scorer in the OVC with an average of 17.1 points per game. Brown alongside his teammate JacQuess Hobbs are fifth and fourth in steals per game with Brown averaging 1.7 and Hobbs averaging 2.0.
Eastern Kentucky is first in the OVC in steals per game with 9.2 which could cause trouble for the Panthers. Eastern could cause trouble of its own as they are second with 7.8 steals per game.
Morehead State is in sixth place with a conference record of 5-5 and an overall record of 11-12. Morehead State on the road is 1-10 and the win was not in conference play.
Morehead State is second OVC in blocks per game with 4.4 while Eastern leads the OVC with 4.6.
Jordan Walker leads the Eagles in scoring with 13.4 points per game. The Eagles also have the second leader in assists per game in Justin Thomas with 4.5.
Southern Illinois Edwardsville is 2-8 in conference play and has an overall record of 5-18. The Cougars have won two games on the road this season with one of those being a conference win against fourth-place Belmont.
Zeke Moore leads the Cougars in scoring with 13.5 points per game while shooting 44.5 percent from the three-point line. His three-point percentage is the fourth best in the conference.
Eastern currently is in seventh-place in the OVC standings with a 4-6 conference record and an overall record of 11-11. The Panthers have yet to lose a game at Lantz Arena this season as they are 7-0 including their four conference wins.
The Panthers are led by junior George Dixon in points per game (12.8) and rebounds per game (8.8). Along with Dixon the Panthers have three other players averaging in double figures: juniors Mack Smith (12.6), Josiah Wallace (12.1), and Marvin Johsnon (10.6).
Blake Faith can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]