Preview: Eureka to Host Emmaus in Non-Conference Play

Photo courtesy of Summer Inselmann.
Photo courtesy of Summer Inselmann.

EUREKA — The Eureka men are getting a break from St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play on Thursday.

The Red Devils will host Emmaus inside Christine Bonati Bollwinkle Arena in a late-season non-conference contest at 7:30 p.m.

 ABOUT EUREKA

Eureka returns to its home floor looking to rebound from an 89-78 setback at Principia on Tuesday, and head into Saturday's SLIAC battle against sixth-place Fontbonne coming off a decisive victory.

The Red Devils are currently seventh in the conference, posting a 7-13 record on the season and a 6-8 mark in the SLIAC.

After collecting SLIAC Player of the Week honors on Monday, Dakota Bennington provided a 22-point, 11-rebound effort at Principia on Tuesday. The junior is the SLIAC's third-leading scorer with 21.6 points per game and 411 total points on the season.

Hank Thomas, who averages 19.1 points per game, moved up to second in the conference in assists (101).  Already fifth in program history in 3-pointers made (196) and eighth in total points (1,388), Thomas is two assists away from joining the top 10 in assists as well, with 264 on his career.

Juniors Jordan Dehm and Austin Juergens contribute 12.7 and 12.3 points per game, respectively. Senior Alex Wiegand remains the SLIAC's leader in field goal percentage (69.7), while Dehm is fifth in the league in rebounds per game (8.1).

Eureka is currently 27th in Division III in points per game (86.8) while shooting 44.6 from the floor.

Eureka returns 10 letterwinners and four players that started at least five games from last season's team that went 18-8 overall and finished as the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference runner-up with a 13-5 league record. The Red Devils welcomed nearly a dozen newcomers to the 2018-19 roster, seven of which will have freshman eligibility.

ABOUT EMMAUS

Emmaus comes to Eureka with a 2-20 record. The Eagles have won their past two games, besting Moody Bible Institute on Saturday, 87-55, and topping Faith Baptist Bible college on Tuesday, 80-67.

In Tuesday's win, Austin Brammer dropped 34 points on 13-of-22 shooting, knocking down 7-of-15 from beyond the arc. Stevie Horan added 27 on 10-of-17 shooting, hitting 6-of-12 3-point tries.

Horan averages 13.2 points per game on 39.6 percent shooting and Brandon Redding adds 11.5 per game.

Senior Elijah Reeves has led the team with eight boards per game over the past three games. Redding, meanwhile, has averaged a 5.9 boards per game in 21 games played.

As a team, the Eagles average 67.9 points per game while shooting 37.5 percent from the field.

RECENT HISTORY

The Eureka men have only taken on Emmaus once in program history.

On Nov. 17, 2015, the Red Devils handled the Eagles in a 100-75 victory at the Reagan Athletic Complex.

Then a freshman, Wiegand provided 11 points, reaching double figures for the third time in his first four games at the collegiate level. Fellow freshman Thomas dropped 13 points on 5-of-8 shooting off the bench. It was his first time reaching double figures for the Red Devils.

Everybody on EC's roster saw playing time in the win.

MEET THE HEAD COACHES

The owner of nearly three decades of coaching experience at the collegiate level, Chip Wilde is in his 12th season as head coach of the Eureka College men's basketball team in 2018-19. The current campaign marks Wilde's 21st season as a collegiate basketball head coach.

Wilde has proven to be one of the most successful head coaches in the storied history of Eureka men's basketball, establishing the Red Devils as a steady presence in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference both on the court and in the classroom. Wilde entered the 2018-19 campaign with 135 wins, fourth-most in the century-long history of the program.

Steve Edmondson is in his first year as Emmaus' head coach and athletic director. He bring over twenty years of coaching experience at the high school and college level to the role.

FOLLOW THE ACTION ONLINE

Eureka will provide a live online video broadcast of Wednesday's game. Links will be available at EurekaRedDevils.com, SLIAC.org and D3hoops.com. Amos Arbogast is in his second season directing the Red Devils.