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November 2, 2012

Broncos prepare to face bigger, stronger Roosevelt University on Saturday

Two days after a lopsided 93-50 victory against neighboring Kalamazoo College, the Broncos will look to continue to sharpen their game against Chicagoland Collegiate Ahtletic Conference (CCAC) opponent Roosevelt University.

Roosevelt comes from a conference composed of division one and two teams, public and private, all affiliated with the NAIA, and are among fourteen Midwest area teams from the states of Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.

The Lakers finished the 2011-2012 season with an overall record of 11-20, having gone just 1-9 in-conference (division one). They lose three seniors in Paul Tometich (13.2 ppg), Mark Tometich (11.1 ppg), and Tyler Smith.

However, Roosevelt does return quite a bit of size and athleticism in the front court. Among them is leading returner 6-foot-6 senior forward Brandyn Denson and Northern Illinois transfer 6-foot-6 sophomore forward Jeremiah Jackson.

Roosevelt is fresh off of a 67-35 stomping of future Bronco regular season opponent Marygrove, in which Denson scored 4 points and 9 rebounds in limited minutes, while Jackson tallied 12 points and 8 rebounds in 26 minutes.

The Lakers will likely pose more of a challenge inside than previous exhibition opponent Kalamazoo College, who was very guard-heavy. The following players are tomorrow's probable starters for the Lakers:

PG - 5-foot-9 Tyree York
SG - 6-foot-3 Kyle Miklasz
SG - 6-foot-3 Joe Harks
SF - 6-foot-6 Jeremiah Jackson
PF - 6-foot-6 Brandyn Denson


The Broncos will be presented with a little bit more of a challenge inside, with the Lakers being more defensive-minded, physical, and pound-it-in-the-paint style of play. In their previous match-up, the Lakers held Marygrove to a microscopic 20% shooting, out-rebounded them 52-40, and forced 20 turnovers. Sophomore guard Joe Harks also made his presence known as he went off for 21 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 steals.

The test comes at a good time for the Broncos, as head coach Steve Hawkins noted in last night's post-game press conference that the only thing he thought his young team could improve upon after last night's game was their defensive positioning in the paint. The Broncos will have their work cut out for them this Saturday in that department and will look to continue building momentum before their first regular season game against Cornell on Saturday, November 10th in Ithaca.

Western Michigan is expected to be without David Brown (knee), and freshmen Kellen McCormick (ankle) and Charles Harris (knee). Redshirt junior Shayne Whittington has been cleared to play and is expected to start at center for the Broncos.

Tip-off at University Arena is scheduled for this upcoming Saturday, November 3rd at 2:00 p.m.

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