DePaul Blue Demons (5-1) vs. Milwaukee Panthers (4-4) – Sunday, December 7th, 1:00 p.m. Central – Allstate Arena, Rosemont, Illinois
Television – FOX Sports 1
Radio – WSCR AM 670
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On Sunday afternoon, the Blue Demons will be playing their fourth game in eight days. That can be a grind of a schedule, but DePaul has had the advantage of not being in classes and focusing only on basketball.
“I’m not real excited about playing games in such close proximity, but our players should be, because there is no class, playing games quickly, not a lot of practice, they should be excited,” said DePaul coach Oliver Purnell.
At 5-1, the Blue Demons are now off to their best start ever under Purnell.
This is the fifth year in a row that the Blue Demons have faced the Milwaukee Panthers in non-conference play, so there is plenty of familiarity between the two teams. The Blue Demons are 3-1 in the last four years of the series, with the lone loss coming at Allstate Arena in 2011. Milwaukee is the second Horizon League team that DePaul has faced this season. The Demons defeated UIC in the season opener.
UWM is off to a 4-4 start in Rob Jeter's tenth year at the helm of the Panthers. After starting 2-4, the Panthers have now won two straight, but have not won a true road game yet. UWM has lost by 10 on the road at Auburn and by 14 at Oklahoma State.
DePaul is likely to encounter some good defense from UWM. The Panthers are giving up an average of just 55.2 points per game and are holding their opponents to just 35 percent from the field thus far.
Senior guard Steve McWhorter leads the Panthers with 16.6 points per game, and better than three assists per game, which should earn him some consideration for Horizon League player of the year.
Former Waukegan guard Akeem Springs has transferred from Northern Illinois to UWM and is off to a good start this season averaging 7.7 ppg and dropped 21 points at Auburn in the team’s opener.
Milwaukee is currently ranked 195th in Division I basketball on Ken Pomeroy’s power rankings.
“Last year we came from behind and beat them by nine at their place,” Purnell told WSCR Radio. “They return all of those guys. It’s a big team where all five guys shoot the three. I think we’ve got to defend the three point line to start with and then we’ve got to keep those big guys off the boards, and then we have to use our athleticism. We need to go inside-out and continue to play the way we’ve played the last three ballgames.”
The Blue Demons will be without the services of senior forward Greg Sequele, who is expected to sit out Sunday’s game with a sprained ankle.
The Last Time
On November 19, 2013 at U.S. Cellular Arena in Milwaukee, DePaul senior forward Cleveland Melvin scored 20 points and Brandon Young added 19 as the Blue Demons broke away in the second half for an 80-71 win over the Milwaukee Panthers.
DePaul shot 61 percent from the field in the second half.
Matt Tiby led the Panthers with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Kyle Kelm contributed 16 points and Austin Arians added 10 points.
# NAME POS. HT. WT. YEAR HOMETOWN / HIGHSCHOOL MAJOR
2 Akeem Springs G 6-4 210 So. Waukegan, Ill. / Waukegan/Northern Illinois Communications
3 Brock Stull G 6-4 180 Fr. Rockford, Ill. / Boylan Catholic
5 Cody Wichmann G 6-5 210 So. Pulaski, Wis. / Pulaski Business
12 Jimmy Stamas G 6-0 170 Jr. La Grange, Ill. / Lyons Township
13 Justin Jordan G 6-3 170 Fr. Davidson, N.C. / Hargrave Military Academy
15 Trinson White G/F 6-5 190 Jr. Milwaukee, Wis. / Riverside/Indian Hills CC Educational Studies
20 Derek Rongstad G/F 6-5 178 Fr. Middleton, Wis. / Middleton
21 Dan Studer F 6-7 230 Jr. Germantown, Wis. / Germantown/Stevens Point Business
22 Evan Richard G 6-2 175 Sr. Kieler, Wis. / Cuba City Business
23 J.J. Panoske F 6-10 225 Jr. Brodhead, Wis. / Brodhead Kinesiology
25 Steve McWhorter G 6-2 185 Sr. Racine, Wis. / St. Catherine's/Indiana State Business
30 JeVon Lyle G 6-2 175 Jr. Kansas City, Mo. / Archbishop O'Hara/Iowa Western CC Educational Studies
31 Matt Tiby F 6-8 230 Jr. Urbandale, Iowa / Urbandale/Kirkwood CC Communications
33 Scotty Tyler F 6-7 205 So. Grafton, Wis. / Grafton
34 Austin Arians F 6-6 200 Jr. Stoughton, Wis. / Madison Edgewood Business
50 Brett Prahl F 6-9 225 Fr. East Troy, Wis. / East Troy Civil Engineering
52 Alex Prahl F 6-9 225 Fr. East Troy, Wis. / East Troy Engineering
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