Gents Look To Finish Perfect Season At Gold Dome
Wednesday, February 25, 2004



Shreveport — At this time last season, the Centenary Gents had already finished their season, their fourth as an independent. There was no conference tournament, no chance at the NCAA Tournament. Boy, how things change in the course of just one calendar year.

Thursday night, the Gents host the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles in the last home game of the 2003-04 season. Centenary, on a 17-game Gold Dome winning streak, has a chance to complete a perfect season at the Gold Dome and post its best record at home in almost 30 years.

But wait, there’s more. Centenary and Oral Roberts, along with IUPUI, are tied for second place with a 9-5 conference record, a half-game behind Valparaiso in the standings. The winner of Thursday night’s game can earn at least a share of the conference title with a win on Saturday. The loser drops to the middle of the conference standings and will probably have a tougher draw in the conference tournament.

Need more excitement? Well, this is the last home game for six seniors, including Michael Gale, the team’s only four-year player, and Andrew Wisniewski, one of the best players in Centenary history. With friends and family in attendance, those players will want to perform at their best in the home finale.

This will not be an easy game for the Gents. Oral Roberts is one of the best offensive teams in the country, averaging 81.6 points per game. The Golden Eagles have a dynamic freshman duo in Ken Tutt and Caleb Green, who have combined to average 37.3 points, 11.9 rebounds, and 4.16 assists per game.

Centenary will counter with the best defense in the conference, giving up only 68.0 points per game. At the Gold Dome, opposing Mid-Con schools are averaging just under 60 points per game. IUPUI scored 15 points under its average, while Southern Utah fell 20 points shy and UMKC was 18 points off its scoring average.

The Golden Eagles won the first meeting on January 15 in Tulsa, Okla., 85-71. Wisniewski scored 19 first-half points as the Gents held a 38-37 lead at halftime. However, Oral Roberts started the second half on a 9-0 run and held Wisniewski to seven second-half points to earn the victory. Green led all players with 30 points, while Jonathan Bluitt notched a double-double with 11 points and 11 assists.

With the Senior Night ceremonies taking place before the game, it is expected that the game may start a little later than the 7:05 p.m. listed tip time. All of the action will be broadcast on KYLA 106.7 FM as well as on the Internet at Sportsjuice.com.