Anyone who's tried to drive on or off campus recently at noon or at 4:30 p.m. has most likely experienced a great test of patience. To quote a popular holiday tune: "Gee, the traffic is terrific" and we don't mean in the sense of "wonderful."
Needless to say, access to campus has been slow at the intersections of Illinois 157 at East University Drive and at University Park Drive as IDOT widens Illinois 157. Currently, IDOT is working between just north of Lewis Road to just south of Ginger Creek Drive.
And, to complicate matters, access to campus through Lewis Road is blocked until this phase of the project is finished.
Alternate routes on and off campus are probably in order until the project is finished which could be late fall, weather permitting. It appears that Northwest Road, South University Drive, Stadium Drive, and North University Drive to New Poag Road are the obvious alternatives.
Although it may take a bit more time to travel those routes, the extra minutes there might be less stressful than stewing in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
According to IDOT officials, the second phase of the project will widen the route from Ginger Creek to Interstate 270 and the third phase will widen it from Lewis Road to Woodland Elementary School in Edwardsville.
So, it appears that we're all in this for the long haul. But the good news is that the finished product will be much better for traffic flow, given the phenomenal growth of the region.
The SIUE women's golf team won its own Cougar Classic Monday, the first time in in the sport's six-year history.
The win came after the team shot a two-day score of 683. Quincy came in second with a 701, while Lindenwood finished third with 708.
Freshman Kallie Harrison (Decatur) was the top Cougar finisher after firing a 78 in day two of the tournament to place her in a tie for first. She lost in a playoff to individual champion Jessica Harbin of Bellarmine.
Kacy Gruenkemeyer (Salem) and Beth Gumbel (Mahomet) finished sixth for the Cougars with a 172. Brittany Auld (Nashville) tied for 13th at 176.
The Cougars' next competition will be the Screaming Eagles Fall Classic next Sunday (9/14) and Monday (9/15).
It's early in the season as far as SIUE women's soccer coach Lynda Bowers is concerned.
SIUE leaped from No. 24 to No. 9 in the nation as well as No. 1 in the Great Lakes region, according to the latest National Soccer Coaches Association poll. "We have a long way to go before we reach this team's potential," Bowers said. "The No. 9 ranking is exciting, but it adds more pressure."
Even though there are no matches scheduled this week, the team will be working. "We are going to take this week to work on some things and keep our fitness routine going," Bowers said.
The Cougars picked up wins last week against McKendree and Mercyhurst to stretch its record to 4-0. This is the fourth time in the history of the program that a team has started the season 4-0. The 2001 team had the program's best season start, going 6-0.
SIUE's backfield has been one of the reasons the Cougars have a perfect record. "Our backfield is doing very well," Bowers said. "That was a goal of ours at the beginning of the year to get that group in order."
SIUE is led in scoring by Sara Decker's (St. Louis) three goals. Christen Carducci (Powell, Ohio) and Ann Crawford (St. Louis) each have two goals and two assists. "Ann Crawford has played really well," Bowers said. "Her work rate is such a positive for the team. She makes things happen and is involved in every play."
SIUE is next in action Tuesday (9/16) when it travels to Lindenwood University.
After playing host to McKendree College on Wednesday (9/10) , the SIUE volleyball team will travel to Northern Kentucky University to play four matches in the GLVC-GLIAC-WVIAC Crossover Tournament.
"The tournament will help determine our regional ranking," coach Todd Gober said. "It will be hard to move up throughout the season if we don't position ourselves high now."
The Cougars (7-1) will first set their sites on McKendree, who comes into Wednesday's match with a 3-2 record. Should SIUE sweep the Bearcats in three games, it will break the all-time consecutive games won with 15. The current mark is 14, set in 1997. Game time is set for 7 p.m. at the Vadalabene Center.
SIUE begins the Crossover Tournament Friday (9/12) against West Virginia State. Later on Friday, the Cougars will face 6-3 Hillsdale College. SIUE will play matches Saturday (9/13) against Grand Valley, with its 6-2 record, and Alderson-Broaddus to finish the tournament.
Andrea Voss (St. Rose) leads the team and the Great Lakes Valley Conference in hitting percentage (.436) and blocks (36).
Voss, Tina Talsma (Ontario, Canada) and Kindra Westendorf (Effingham) have combined for 69 blocks so far this season.
"When Kindra is aggressive, she terminates," Gober said. "Tina Talsma is getting comfortable and is a terminator. Talsma, Westendorf and Voss might be the best blocking line in Division II volleyball."
Allison Buss (Towanda) leads the team with 94 digs. "Allison is playing phenomenal defense right now," Gober said. "She is passing well in serve receive and her digs are on target."
Freshmen Tricia Happe (St. Louis) and Beth DeGreeff (St. Louis) also have impressed in the early portion of the season. "Beth is getting comfortable in the libero role and Tricia is playing good defense."
SIUE's men's soccer team will travel to Illinois-Springfield Tuesday (tonight) before playing host to Missouri Southern State on Friday (9/12) night at Bob Guelker Field.
Illinois-Springfield, a member of the NAIA and entering the game with a 4-0 record, has scored 23 goals in four games this season.
"Illinois-Springfield is a non-regional opponent who gives us a chance to get close to developing a sense of how we should be playing," Coach Ed Huneke said. "It is a tough atmosphere to play in and it will train us well for the future."
Missouri Southern will be the final test for the Cougars before they open Great Lakes Valley Conference play. Friday's game time is set for 7 p.m. "Missouri Southern starts up our regional plate which will remain for the rest of the season," Huneke said. "It will be an important game in determining the possibility of an NCAA bid at the end of the regular season."
Cal Thomas (Rochester) scored twice last week against McKendree and leads the team with two goals. Victor Pacheco (Brazil), who scored SIUE's only goal in a 2-1 loss at Christian Brothers, leads the team in shots with 15. "Victor is still making strides but is not quite there yet," Huneke said. "He has the potential and will score goals for us. We are developing plenty of scoring opportunities but we can't finish them off."
With a duo of returning All-Great Lakes Valley Conference performers, the SIUE men's cross country team is anxious to get the season under way.
SIUE will kick off its season this Saturday (9/13) at the Cougar/Bearcat Challenge at SIUE's cross country course.
Brian Taghon (East Moline) and Ryan Boyll (Normal), who each were All-GLVC performers last season, will lead a deep Cougar pack. "Taghon should lead the pack this year," Coach Darryl Frerker said. "He had good training over the summer so there is no reason to believe he will not be in the front at the GLVC meet. Boyll gives us a one-two punch with Taghon."
Nick Campbell (Charleston) also returns to the squad. "Nick has consistently come in close behind Taghon and Boyll," Frerker said.
The Cougars have seven runners who have the potential to fill the remaining spots on the team. "Any one of those seven on any given day can be the fourth and fifth spot," Frerker said. "It will be interesting this weekend to see who races.
"We have depth and are training better this year than the past. We have a positive outlook and look forward to competition to see where we are."
SIUE's women's cross country opens its season Saturday morning (9/13) at the Cougar/Bearcat Challenge at SIUE's cross country course.
"We have a solid group of five upperclassmen that are looking pretty strong," Coach Darryl Frerker said.
Breanne Steffens (Moline) leads the pack, followed closely by Carrie Carducci (Powell, Ohio). Mary Witte (Normal), Erin McMullen (Salem) and Maria Ewersmann (St. Paul, Mo.) round out the top five.
Frerker indicated that Natalie Aschim (Rockford) and Heather Zipparo (Mount Prospect) could also vie for a spot in the top five. "Aschim and Zipparo will be knocking on the back door once they get into better shape," Frerker said. "The ladies have a common goal to go after the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship."
After a trip that collected a win against Kentucky Wesleyan and a loss to Southern Indiana, the SIUE women's tennis team will be in action again Tuesday (tonight) at Missouri-St. Louis. The Cougars then open their home schedule this weekend with matches on Friday (9/12) and Saturday (9/13).
SIUE dropped a close match to Southern Indiana 5-4 before shutting down Kentucky Wesleyan 9-0 last weekend. "The girls had the normal opening day jitters," Coach Bill Logan said. "But we left knowing we are in the hunt. Things are looking promising."
Laura Zeeb (Greenville) and Lisa Warner (Arlington Hts.) each won their two individual matches last weekend. That duo is also 2-0 in doubles action. Gina Wohltman (Effingham) also posted a 2-0 individual performance.
SIUE will play host to Lewis at 3 p.m. Friday and Saint Joseph's at 9 a.m. Saturday. Both matches will be played at SIUE's tennis courts.
Here are photos from the Third Annual Block Party, held in downtown Edwardsville adjacent to the Madison County Courthouse. It was estimated that more than 2,500 people were on hand for an evening of fun, food, beverages, music, dancing and other activities provided by local vendors and merchants. (SIUE Photos)
Enchanting audiences with his innovative solo piano compositions for more than 25 years, famed recording artist George Winston comes to SIUE on Sept. 19 and 20 to begin the 18th season of the Arts & Issues series.
Each year Arts & Issues brings some of the best and brightest performers and speakers from around the world to Southwestern Illinois audiences for entertaining and thought-provoking presentations on campus.
Winston continues that tradition with two captivating performances at 7:30 both nights in Katherine Dunham Hall theater. "The chance to bring George here for two nights was just too tempting to pass up," says John Peecher, assistant director of development for the College of Arts and Sciences and coordinator of the series.
"We wanted to be sure our Arts & Issues patrons had ample opportunity to see and hear George Winston perform his beguiling piano melodies that have become so well known."
Despite his many musical influences-jazz, stride piano, and blues-Winston is often categorized as "new age" in record stores. Winston himself prefers to describe his own work as "rural folk piano." With several impressive recordings to his credit on the Windham Hill label and his own Dancing Cat label, the Grammy Award-winning instrumentalist has a broad repertoire, including tributes to jazz legend Vince Guaraldi and to the rock band, The Doors.
In addition to his musical reputation, Winston also is known as someone concerned with domestic social issues, such as the plight of the less fortunate. At each of his concerts he requests that canned food drives be conducted for local food pantries. During his two appearances at SIUE, patrons may bring canned food items to the lobby of Dunham Hall for distribution to the Glen-Ed Pantry in Edwardsville.
Information about the Winston concerts and subscription ticket information for the 2003-04 season series may be found on the Arts & Issues Web site: artsandissues.com and in a printed brochure available by contacting John Peecher, (618) 650-2626, or, by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Subscription tickets are $121.50 for all nine events; $60.75 for students, and are available through the Web site or through Peecher at the above phone number or e-mail address. Subscription and individual tickets also are available at the Morris Center Information Desk, (618) 650-5555.
The remaining season includes: San Jose Taiko (Oct. 24), with the spellbinding and propulsive sounds of the taiko drum; underwater explorer Robert Ballard (Nov. 18); the acclaimed musicians of The Aspen Ensemble (Jan. 22); the "rockin' gospel celebration" of the Blind Boys of Alabama (Feb. 6); the exciting Grammy Award-winning Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra (2 p.m. Feb. 29); National Geographic photographer Sam Abell (March 16); the explosive and creative movement of Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago (April 2); and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Norman Mailer (April 20).
Armageddon has been avoided, but the invaders still threaten as staff members of Academic Computing and the Office of Information Technology continue to make CougarNet safe for humanity.
OK, perhaps it's not that dramatic but the aftermath of the fight against the Blaster Worm and the Sobig virus still persists. "We spent all last week in the residence halls, visiting each student with a personal computer or laptop, and making sure their computers are safe," says John Drueke, supervisor of Academic Computing.
In early August, SIUE's CougarNet was hit by both types of marauders and network watchdogs went into action. The Blaster alone attacked computer networks on at least three continents, affecting more than 1 million computers worldwide. Drueke said more than 3,000 computers are directly connected to CougarNet.
All this led to OIT's creation of a special Web site (www.siue.edu/techalert) that keeps network users up to date about the ongoing struggle. "It's been a lot of work but we were able to keep the system running while the response teams cleansed infected computers on campus from the Blaster and dealt with the Sobig virus."
As of the beginning of the semester, Drueke's team was gaining on the problem, but a decision had to be made about how to fight the bad guys but at the same time continue to maintain the everyday duties that the system demands. "We have now hired additional temporary help and they will continue working in the residence halls and then on to Cougar Village," Drueke said.
Drueke said plans are already under way to make the system even more secure against problems in the future. In addition, the modem pool is being replaced for off-campus access by CougarNet users. "We're replacing the current modems with models that can carry much more of the volume of calls we're experiencing," he said.
"All of this is a new level of service we're offering to users of CougarNet."