By Chris McGee

It was an up- and -down three days for Coach Jeff Neubauer’s team.  On Thursday, the Colonels (16-15 7-9 OVC) lost to  Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (9-16 6-9 OVC), 63-58.  The game was marred by bad shooting from both teams, but especially by the Colonels.  Eastern needed a win the secure a spot in the Ohio Valley Conference tournament.  However, EKU clinched a spot in post-season play by defeating  Eastern Illinois  (12-17 5-11 OVC) , 86-74.

 Thursday Eastern hosted Southern Illinois.  Both teams were playing for the right to compete in the OVC tournament.  The Colonels got off to a slow start,  missing their first thirteen shots from the floor.  Cougar’s forward Jerome Jones scored the team’s first seven points of the half on his way to a game -high 22 points.  Jones was also tied with forward Mark Yelowich for the team lead in rebounds, with 11.  Yelowich also chipped in with sixteen points.  The Cougars also had seventeen points from forward Derian Shaffer.  After the Cougars jumped out to a seven point lead  with 11:22 left in the first half, the Colonels went on a  9-0 run to take the lead , 13-11.  Both teams played good defense in the first half.  They denied each other the opportunity to take control of the game.  This was evident by the three early charges taken by the Colonels and the fact that Eastern forced Southern Illinois into ten turnovers.  At halftime, the Cougars led, 25-21.  For the half, The Cougars shot 44 percent (11-25) from the field and 13 percent (1-8) from the three point line.  The Colonels shot 25 percent (7-28) from the floor including 9 percent (1-11) from the three..

“We just missed lay-ups,” said Coach Neubauer.  “We also missed opportunities in