The university carillon sounded 12 times and the SIUE alma mater was played over the Stratton Quad at noon last week to honor U.S. Marine Cpl. Evan James of LaHarpe, a former SIUE student who drowned in a canal during the fighting in Iraq.
James, 20, was a sophomore studying Kinesiology and Health Education to become a physical fitness trainer, said Assistant Professor Brian Butki, one of James' instructors.
According to a military spokesman, James was one of two Marines from a Central Illinois Reserve unit who went underwater in the Saddam Canal in southeastern Iraq on March 25, while preparing a safe place for soldiers to draw water. Both bodies were recovered later in the week.
The spokesman said it appeared that James' unit was not under fire at the time. James served with the 6th Engineer Support Battalion, based in Peoria. The Saddam Canal runs parallel with the Euphrates River near An Nasiriyah, about 100 miles north of the Kuwaiti border.
Senior Assessment projects are an excellent way to bring to bear all the skills learned throughout a student's college career, but it's a bonus if the project's outcome makes a real difference in society.
That's the way Amanda Powers, a senior in Speech Communications, looked at her project-creating a marketing campaign for last week's Celebrate Abilities Week. With input from Speech Professor Kevin McClearey and help from two other classmates, Karie Doughty and Katie Serrano, Powers sought and received a proclamation from the Madison County Board to declare March 24-30 as "Celebrate Abilities Week."
SIUE requires each senior to complete a senior assignment that demonstrates proficiency in the student's major. Each assignment is a scholarly collaboration between a senior student and a dedicated faculty member, fostering creativity and self reliance.
As luck would have it, Powers was to make her senior project presentation March 19, the same night the board was to approve a new rule allowing public comment at board meetings. Powers' presentation was the first one under the new rules. "The wording of the presentation emphasized the strong relationship between Madison County and the university, and their mutual interest in recognizing the abilities of persons with disabilities," McClearey said.
"The presentation and the work all three of them put into the project was exemplary and this was a chance to showcase the talents of our students," McClearey said.
Powers said later she was thrilled to make the presentation, if not terribly nervous. "We emphasized three points," Powers said. "We stressed the importance of the events during the week, including the 5K Roll, Run, Walk in downtown Edwardsville and the wheelchair basketball game at the university. We also pointed to the strong connection between the county board and the university and the importance of recognizing that persons with disabilities also have other abilities."
In addition to the county board presentation, the three students also sent letters to mayors of several cities and towns in Madison County asking for similar proclamations. That part of the project resulted in proclamations in Edwardsville, East Alton, Worden, and Wood River.
"I wanted to do something that would make a difference and we did," Powers said. "It was exciting to participate in the democratic process, but I'm also thrilled that people with disabilities were recognized throughout the county and in several communities."
For a woman, it hasn't been easy getting to the front row of the White House briefing room. But with grit, talent, and a fair amount of chutzpah, award-winning reporter and columnist Helen Thomas broke barriers and made it to that seat.
Outspoken, direct and a fixture in the White House press corps since the Presidency of John F. Kennedy, Thomas will offer "Wit and Wisdom from the Front Row at the White House," at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, in Meridian Ballroom as part of the university's Arts & Issues series.
"With the world events that are unfolding, Ms. Thomas' appearance at SIUE could not possibly be more timely and relevant," said John Peecher, assistant director of development for the College of Arts and Sciences and coordinator of Arts & Issues. "Her perspectives are likely to be thought-provoking, fascinating, and, undoubtedly, challenging."
After 57 years as a correspondent for UPI-including an appointment in 1974 as the news organization's White House bureau chief-Thomas now writes as a columnist for Hearst newspapers. She joined UPI and the Washington press corps in 1943, and for 12 years wrote radio news for UPI. Eventually, she covered the news of the federal government, including the Department of Justice, the FBI, Health and Human Services, and Capitol Hill.
In November 1960, she began covering then President-elect John F. Kennedy, following him to the White House in January 1961 as a member of the UPI team. It was during this first White House assignment that Thomas began closing Presidential news conferences with "Thank you, Mr. President."
Thomas was the only woman print journalist traveling with President Nixon to China during his breakthrough trip in January 1972. Since then she has traveled to China with former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Presidents Ford, Reagan, and George H. Bush. She has the distinction of having traveled around the world several times with Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan and George H. Bush, during the course of which she covered every economic summit.
Among Thomas' accomplishments are: served as president of the Women's National Press Club; was the first woman officer of the National Press club; become the first woman officer of the White House Correspondents Association and its first woman president; and received the 1998 International Women's Media Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. In November 1976 she was named by the World Almanac as one of the 25 most influential women in America.
"There can be no question, Helen Thomas has been a trailblazer for women journalists," Peecher said.
Additionally, Thomas was the first recipient of the Helen Thomas Lifetime Achievement Award established by the White House Correspondents Association, and honored by President and Mrs. Clinton at the association's annual dinner in 1998.
Thomas has received 30 honorary doctorates from many colleges and universities including Brown, Northeastern University, and Michigan State University. She has delivered lectures and speeches on the White House and the Presidency throughout the country and is the author of Dateline White House and Front Row at the White House.
Tickets for Helen Thomas' Arts & Issues appearance are $8. For ticket information, call (618) 650-2626, or, from St. Louis toll-free, (888) 328-5168, Ext. 2626; visit the series' Web site: www.siue.edu/ARTS_ISSUES; or e-mail email@example.com.
Admission includes free parking with the presentation of a ticket stub in the lots behind the Morris University Center or Katherine Dunham Hall.
Elma Winemiller, the lonely, unmarried minister's daughter, is hopelessly in love with her childhood crush, John Buchanan, a brilliant but undisciplined doctor.
Seems like a good storyline for a Tennessee Williams play? It is. Summer and Smoke is the next offering of SIUE's University Theater and Director Chuck Harper says the play may be melodramatic but the richness of Williams' skill with dialogue shines through.
Summer and Smoke (anyone's guess what that means) opens at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 18, and continues at the same curtain time April 19, 25, and 26, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 27, all at the Katherine Dunham Hall theater.
Some might say the plot is pure Williams-the physical, pleasure-seeking John, who represents Alma's repressed sexual longing, woos Alma, who in turn embodies an emotional capacity foreign to John-but the playwright's poetry is still worth the price of admission.
"This is a very melodramatic play that may seem silly at times in this day and age, but I want the actors to embrace that," Harper said.
"If the actors embrace the characters, the audience will be right there with them. If the characters are totally believable to the audience, they'll be right there with John and Alma to the end, hoping that these two will find love and happiness," Harper said.
"The audience must be on their side and the only way to create that for the audience is for the actors to totally buy into the characters they are playing."
As for the set, the central piece in this 1948 play is a stone figure of an angel in a park fountain. "Our set designer, Jim Dorethy, is creating the angel as a set piece that can be lit from any angle including from within," Harper explained. "We couldn't do the angel as a two-dimensional figure. It must reflect the emotional quality of each scene.
"The one mistake we could make is to mess with Tennessee Williams' stage directions," Harper said. "For example, he waxes rhapsodic about the sky, so we're creating a stylized skyline that has geometric shapes suggesting a village in the distance, but they're actually hanging pieces and you can see the sky through the pieces."
The costumes, Harper said, will be realistic to the time of the play-1912-and the set will be utilitarian for creating various settings. "This is the first time I've had the opportunity to direct a Tennessee Williams play," Harper said. "I'm excited about the prospects and I know the cast is, so I'm just hoping that it all works.
"We're not creating any concepts that deviate from the playwright's vision. It's a fairly straightforward play and we're going to perform it to the best of our ability."
Tickets are $7; senior citizens, $5, and may be obtained by calling the SIUE box office, (618) 650-2774.
Night free sessions with legal experts will be offered during April as part of the SIUE People's Law School. The sessions are co-sponsored by the Student Legal Services Advisory Board, the Madison County Bar Association, and the Illinois State Bar Association.
Two sessions will be conducted on each of four Wednesdays-April 2, 9, 16, and 23-from 7-8 and 8-9 p.m., all in Room 2002 of SIUE's Morris University Center. The sessions are open to the public. A complete schedule follows:
• April 2-The Courts and How They Operate-The Hon. Dan Stack, circuit judge of the Third Judicial Circuit; Traffic and DUI Citations-Edwardsville attorney Ron Slemmer.
• April 9-Bankruptcy and Debt Relief-Granite City attorney Dennis J. Orsey; Wills and Durable Powers of Attorney -Highland attorney Matt Homann.
• April 16-Landlord/Tenant Rights and Responsibilities-Alton attorney Barb Goeben; Buying/Selling a Home: How a Lawyer Can Help-Granite City attorney Phillip Theis.
• April 23-Juvenile Courts and Termination of Parental Rights-Granite City attorney Morgan Scoggins; Collecting On a Debt-Edwardsville attorney Lawrence Taliana.
Complimentary parking will be available in Visitors' Lot B; light refreshments will be served. For more information, call the Kimmel Leadership Center, (618) 650-2686.
For all intents and purposes, the microphone and the audio board could be part of a traditional radio station, but instead of being connected to a transmitter, the sound of SIUE's new Web Radio station goes out through the internet.
The station went "on the air" in late January and it already seems to have garnered a listenership, at least on campus. "I do my show from 9 to 10 p.m. on Mondays and Tuesdays, and I get phone calls," says Derek Jamison, a senior majoring in Computer Management Information Systems and a dee-jay with the station.
Last week, the chancellor helped with a "grand opening" at the station. Jamison said the grand opening was to make more people on campus aware of the station.
His computer background seems to make him a natural for this work, but he insists the dee-jay experience is a hobby to him. "I have always enjoyed music and I enjoy working with computers, so working at the station is a a lot of fun for me," Jamison said. "I just try to enjoy the experience."
Jamison, who plays a mix of "neo-soul," hip-hop, and R &B on his show,"Focus On This," goes by his last name only on-air, "I use my last name only because that's what all my friends know me as." During a recent show, Jamison said he received an e-mail from a friend in Hawai'i. "My friend said we were coming in loud and clear."
Web Radio student advisor Robert Trumpbour, an assistant professor of Mass Communications, said the project was headed by Lisa Herman, a graduate assistant in the Mass Comm. department. "Because it's not a traditional station, the students have the leeway to play the kind of music they want without following a restricted format," Trumpbour said.
"That way the listener gets a wide variety of music, talk, and programs you wouldn't on a station such as KMOX or WSIE," Trumpbour said. "But this makes for a great training ground if any of these students want to work in radio internships. They'll be more familiar with the radio station atmosphere."
As for appropriate Web radio behavior, the students learn accepted on-air guidelines as part of the training. "Even though Web radio is not governed by the FCC, we train the students to learn FCC guidelines for acceptable behavior on the air. They follow a code of ethics just as announcers on other broadcast outlets."
The message was about youth violence, abstinence, and steps to achieve success, but the speaker was an unlikely source of experience in these matters.
The speaker was Miss America Erika Harold, a native of Champaign-Urbana, who recently came to East St. Louis Senior High School to speak with students. She also had time to meet with students from the East St. Louis Charter School's Peace by Piece program. Harold, currently on a national speaking tour, spoke of "Preventing Youth Violence and Bullying: Respect Yourself, Protect Yourself."
For Harold, the road to Miss America was preceded by years of racial and sexual harassment. "My home, where I lived with three younger brothers and sisters, was vandalized numerous times," Harold said. "In high school, the most frightening thing I experienced was when I learned of my classmates' plans to put their lunch money together to buy a rifle to shoot me."
Harold also encouraged the students to define themselves as individuals by abstaining from drugs, sex, and alcohol. "The choices I made brought about self-empowerment and self-respect."
The Peace by Piece program, in conjunction with the SIUE East St. Louis Charter School, places emphasis on prevention of youth violence. The program was instituted to teach strategies of coping with violence, drugs, and anger. Since its inception three years ago, the program has worked to educate participants in more appropriate ways to deal with stressful situations rather than interpersonal violence.
Thus far, the program has made a tremendous impact on East St. Louis Charter school students. "In the Peace by Piece program we can talk about our personal problems, it helps build our self-esteem, and most importantly, it helps keep our attitudes under control," said Charter School student Ramon Richard. The Peace by Piece program is a 10-week program that convenes two days out of the week at the Charter School.
Not only does Miss America encourage students to take an active role in the prevention of youth violence, but also compels educators and school officials to implement an anti-harassment curriculum aimed at providing young people with the tools necessary to improve interpersonal relations among peers.
"We have been fortunate enough to have secured the Peace by Piece program for three years now," said Patrice Wilkes, faculty associate/case management coordinator. "Unfortunately, this is their final year and the project is seeking grants at this time." Peace by Piece is not alone in its' mission to combat youth violence. Efforts are joined by Miss America to institute more programs and curriculums such as this one.
As her time with the students came to a close, the reigning Miss America presented students with a unique farewell. Harold concluded the event singing the opera piece, Habenera, that won her the crown,
For the students, the visit with Miss America was a chance to see first hand the effects of violence and how it can be overcome. For the Peace by Piece participants, they departed the event with a new outlook on life. Miss America presented a final challenge to the students: "Define yourselves on your own terms. You have the power to decide if you are going to be a statistic or successful. Which one do you choose?" --
Kay Werner, chair of A Book In Every Home campaign, is recipient of the 2003 Kimmel Community Service Award for Faculty and Staff. Werner is manager of Information Technology at the East St. Louis Center.
A Book In Every Home fosters a love of reading through donations of age-appropriate books to children in the St. Clair County Head Start program, the SIUE East St. Louis Child Development Center, and the SIUE Early Childhood Center. Books also are given to children in the Riverbend Head Start and Family Services program. The campaign delivers books to some 3,000 preschool children annually in Southwestern Illinois.
Werner also has been involved in several other volunteer efforts including serving on the boards of Anderson Hospital in Maryville, the SIUE Friend of Music, and the River Bluffs Council of the Girl Scouts of America. She also was instrumental in establishing a chapter of Dress for Success in Southern Illinois.
Werner will receive the award at the April 3 Kimmel Leadership Awards Banquet, sponsored by SIUE and the Belleville News-Democrat. She will join other volunteers from Southwestern Illinois, who will receive Kimmel awards in five categories (see below).
To be eligible for the faculty-staff honor, a nominee must have been a full-time, continuing employee of the university for at least two years and demonstrated continuous service to a single community agency, organization, or business for at least two years.
Growing up in a rural area, Werner's parents took an active role in the community, each serving as school board member, helping with political campaigns, serving their church, and sharing both their homes and resources with others. "Given these wonderful role models," Werner said, "I saw first hand that community service takes personal time, passion, and a commitment to others. By their example, I also learned the worth and the responsibility of being involved.
"Our small, rural community was a better place because of them."
Werner said her service on numerous boards and committees is time well spent. "Each has given me an opportunity to serve those in need, to advance my passion in the knowledge that literacy is fundamental to school and life success, to promote good health as a goal for the entire community, and to recognize that women and families need support to achieve self-sufficiency.
"Being involved in community service is one of the most enriching things I have done," Werner said. "I have learned so much from so many. Truly, I have gained far more than I have given."
Tickets for the April 3 banquet, scheduled in Meridian Ballroom, are $30 per person. For more information about tickets or about ordering them, call the Office of Conferences and Institutes, (618) 650-2660.
Several Southwestern Illinois residents will receive Kimmel Community Service Awards at the April 3 Kimmel Leadership Awards Banquet..
The annual award was established to recognize outstanding community members for dedication and contributions to community volunteer service as exemplified by Carol Kimmel, a former member of the SIU Board of Trustees, who for most of her adult life has given freely of her time and talent to volunteerism.
This year there were five winners in the following categories: social service-social welfare, environmental and civic betterment, regional leadership, agency-organizational concerns, and special populations. Those nominated must have demonstrated a variety of community service contributions for an extended period; demonstrated outstanding voluntary community service, as well as a commitment to the citizens of Illinois or Missouri; and must document leadership roles and responsibilities.
This year's winners are:
Agency-Organizational Concerns---Jan Goodwin
Special Populations (posthumously)---Prentice Johnson
Regional Leadership---Jim Maher
Social Service-Social Welfare---Rev. Obie Rush
Environmental-Civic Betterment---Wayne Schlosser
Preston E. Williams, of Florissant, Mo., a sophomore majoring in Liberal Studies, has been named recipient of the 2003 Carol Kimmel Scholarship. The scholarship program is co-sponsored by the Belleville News-Democrat.
The annual scholarship was established to recognize students for their outstanding leadership and community volunteer service contributions, in addition to academic excellence.
Criteria for winning the scholarship includes maintaining a 3.0 cumulative grade point average and demonstrating volunteer contributions within the last two years in leadership, service, and/or citizenship, including leadership in a student organization or at least one elected office; and more than 30 hours of nonpaid service to a community agency or community organization. The scholarship provides one full year of tuition at the SIUE in-state rate.
A licensed minister, Williams has been very active since last year as president of the Maranatha Christian Ministry, a student organization on campus. As a minister/mentor with the Shalom Church City of Peace in St. Louis, Williams has conducted worship services, performed youth counseling and mentoring, and worked with other ministers at the church to provide activities for youngsters.
He also has volunteered with the Student Leadership Development Program (SLDP), helping prepare food baskets for needy families. Also through the SLDP, Williams has worked with elementary students as a tutor for the Open Doors program and has performed maintenance and custodial services for Salus Place, a recovery and rehabilitation home for former drug addicts and those with HIV. He also has served as a student mentor for the Office of Special Services in its "Lifting As We Climb Program." In addition, Williams has been active with the SIUE Gospel Choir.
Quoting John Maxwell, author and motivational speaker, Williams said "leadership has less to do with position than it has with disposition," when he refers to his volunteer activities. "For nearly two years I've held a 'disposition' of leadership," Williams said. "This 'disposition' has been and is one of dedication, humility, and discipline.
"As a licensed minister and community servant, it is my desire to arrive at a position in which I can help others to reach their maximum potential," Williams said. "And, I believe education is a primary necessity in arriving at that position."
Williams will be recognized Thursday, April 3, at the Kimmel Leadership Awards Banquet.
Calling it "a remarkable and noteworthy achievement," Dr. Ann Boyle, acting dean of the School of Dental Medicine, has announced that for the third time in the past five years, SDM students have ranked as one of the top five U.S. dental schools in test scores on their National Board Dental Exams Part II.
For the second consecutive year, the SIU/SDM students have ranked fourth nationally. "This speaks volumes about the hard work and commitment of our students and our faculty," Boyle said. "The test scores are evidence of the student's genuine interest in mastering their course work, and the quality of our educational program."
Passing the Part II exam is a requirement for licensure in the United States. "The scores are indicative of the measure of student preparedness, as well as the quality of the SIU dental school," Boyle said. Historically, students from the SIU dental school in Alton score high nationally on the exams. Overall, the Class of 2003 achieved the highest overall class average ever for the school.
Boyle noted that this year's scores continue a positive trend on board scores. "For the past seven years, our students have consistently ranked in the top quarter of the nation's dental schools, and now the top five for the third time in five years," she said. "In effect, the bar is higher now at the SIU School of Dental Medicine."
Additionally, the Class of 2003 earned a 100-percent pass rate. SIU/SDM students have earned the highest possible pass rate on four of the past six exams. They have earned a 95-percent or better pass rate for the past 10 years.
The SIUE Master of Social Work Program has been awarded accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The Council is the national accrediting organization for social work educational programs in the United States.
Achievement of accreditation affirms the quality of SIUE's MSW program, said Professor Thomas Regulus, chair of the SIUE Department of Social Work. "The accreditation standards set by the CSWE indicates a level of quality program performance that is recognized nationwide by the higher education community."
Regulus pointed out that graduation from an accredited social work program is a requirement for licensing to practice social work in many states including Illinois and Missouri. "The university's MSW program, implemented in 1997, serves students in both states," Regulus said, "but primarily in the St. Louis and Southwestern Illinois region.
"The Department of Social Work's MSW program sees its active presence in the Southwestern Illinois region as a force for social change and for the development of greater social and economic justice among the region's diverse population," Regulus said. "Within this vision, the MSW program's mission is to preserve, promote, and achieve the social well being of all individuals, families, groups, and communities through the education of competent and ethical advanced social work practitioners.
"Our mission includes strengthening the profession of social work and supporting the social and economic development of Southwestern Illinois through scholarship and public service."
Regulus said approximately 150 social workers have graduated from the program over the past five years. "The Metro-East Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers and many social work practitioners and agencies in the Metro East and St. Louis area have been supporters of and instrumental in the development and growth of the program."
The program currently prepares students for practice with children and families, and in health, mental health, and disability services. A school social work certification program is expected to be added to the curriculum in the next academic year. For more information about enrollment in the MSW program, call the SIUE Department of Social Work, (618) 650-5758.
Two more chances remain to hear world class concert pianist Ian Hobson on campus-tonight and tomorrow night-as he brings to a close his nine-month series of recitals performing the solo piano works of Frédéric Chopin.
The series of nine recitals began last fall and have been produced by the Department of Music, under the guidance of Professor Allan Ho, a musicologist in the department.
The back-to-back concerts are both at 7:30 p.m. in Katherine Dunham Hall theater. The series, Frédéric Chopin: Evolution of a Genius, has been presented chronologically, following stages in the Polish composer's life and career. The final concerts are titled: 1841-1844: Faltering Health, Breakup with Sand and 1844-1849: Last Concerts (Given in the British Isles), Declining Health and Death.
The April 1 recital includes: Allegro de concert in A Major, Op. 46; Prelude in C-sharp Minor, Op. 45; Tarantelle in A-flat Major, Op. 43; Fugue in A Minor; Impromptu in G-flat Major, Op. 51; Scherzo in E Major, Op. 54; Ballade in F Minor, Op. 52; Mazurkas, Op. 56, Nos. 1-3; Nocturnes, Op. 55, Nos. 1-2; Waltz in A Minor; Moderato in E Major; Berceuse in D-flat Major, Op. 57; and Polonaise in A-flat Major, Op. 3.
The April 2 recital includes: Mazurkas, Op. 59, Nos. 1-3; Barcarolle in F-sharp Major, Op. 60; Waltzes, Op. 64, Nos. 1-3; Nocturnes, Op. 62, Nos. 1-2; Mazurkas, Op. 63, Nos. 1-3; Galopp [marquis] in A-flat Major; Polonaise-Fantaisie in A-flat Major, Op. 61; Mazurka in A Minor, Op. 67, No. 4; Mazurka in G Minor, Op. 67, No. 2; Mazurka in F Minor, Op. 68, No. 4; and Sonata in B Minor, Op. 58.
Called one of the greatest pianists of our time, Hobson's programs consistently demonstrate a repertoire that spans centuries and demands a command of styles and scholarly vision. His recordings and recitals encompass a cross section of works.
Hobson also has performed the Chopin and Moscheles concertos at the Bard Music Festival, and has presented recitals in the United States, England, and Europe, featuring diverse works such as Beethoven's complete sonatas, excerpts from Gershwin's Song Book, Schumann's major piano works, Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit, and Prokofiev's Sonata No. 7, to name a few.
Tickets are $7; students and senior citizens, $6. For ticket information, call the SIUE Department of Music, (618) 650-3900.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's Carrie Carducci (Powell, Ohio) and Jennifer Jaquez (Aurora) both provisionally qualified for the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships in their respective events Saturday (4/5) at the Gatorade Classic in Cape Girardeau, Mo.
The NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships will be held May 22-24 at SIUE's Korte Stadium.
Carducci topped the provisional qualifying time in the 3,000-meter steeplechase by finishing with a time of 11:29.70. Jaquez ran the 400-meter hurdles in a provisional qualifying time of 1:03.31.
On the men's side, David Droege (Nashville) was close to qualifying in the 3,000-meter steeplechase. Jeff Fearday (Teutopolis) and Kevin Koller (Centralia) each were close to qualifying in the 400-meter dash.
Coach Darryl Frerker was pleased with his team's overall performance in its first outdoor meet of the year. "It was a good start to our outdoor season," he said. "There were a lot of personal records. Across the board, the individuals did real well."
Provisional qualifying times place individuals on a national performance list by event. Only the top performers in the nation advance to the NCAA Championships. Carducci, Jaquez and the rest of the SIUE track team will attempt to improve their personal marks at the Cougar Classic this Saturday (4/12).
After a conference doubleheader with Missouri-St. Louis on Tuesday (4/8), the SIUE softball team will head to Battle Creek, Mich., for the GLVC-GLIAC Crossover to be held Saturday (4/12) and Sunday (4/13).
SIUE, 24-7 and 8-2 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference, rebounded from its conference loss at Quincy will a three-game sweep of non-conference opponents. The Cougars defeated Mississippi Women then swept Alabama-Huntsville, the 16th-ranked team in the nation.
SIUE, tied with Lewis in the GLVC standings, will try to continue its winning ways Tuesday (4/8) when it plays a doubleheader at Missouri-St. Louis. UMSL is 9-13-1 overall and 3-5 in the GLVC. "Every conference game is important at this time," Coach Sandy Montgomery said.
The Cougars then face Gannon, Saginaw Valley and Ashland on Saturday (4/12) at the crossover tournament. SIUE will play Grand Valley and Wayne State (Mich.) on Sunday (4/13). "This will be a tough tournament," Montgomery said. "We are currently fourth in our region, and the three teams ahead of us will be there."
Koree Claxton (Rantoul) went 4 for 6 from the plate in SIUE's two wins at Alabama-Huntsville. She drove in five runs and hit two home runs. RyAnn Spann (Bethalto) improved her season record to 15-3, including both wins over Alabama-Huntsville. Spann started game one and picked up the win in relief in the eight-inning nightcap.
The SIUE women's golf team will play in the McKendree Invitational on Friday (4/11) and Saturday (4/12) and will follow that with an appearance at the Lady Hawk Invitational in Quincy on Sunday (4/13) and Monday (4/14).
SIUE is coming off a fourth-place finish at the Bellarmine Invitational and a seventh-place finish at the NKU Spring Invitational.
Katie Farrell (Princeton) led the Cougars and finished tied for third at Bellarmine will a two-round score of 173. Farrell also led the team at NKU, where she finished tied for 21st overall.
Deanna Bock (Edwardsville) carded a two-day score of 183 at Bellarmine, which was good for 13th overall.
The SIUE men's tennis team will look for its first win of the season this week. SIUE (0-5) plays host to Illinois-Springfield on Wednesday (4/9) at 3 p.m. before playing Missouri-St. Louis on Thursday (4/10) at 3:30 p.m.
The UM-St. Louis match is a makeup from a postponed match earlier this year. The Cougars then travel to Saint Joseph's and Lewis on Saturday (4/12) for two Great Lakes Valley Conference matches.
"The Illinois-Springfield match will be tough, but hopefully we'll come out playing well and get us prepared for UMSL," Coach Bill Logan said.
The SIUE women's tennis team ended its 2002-2003 season with a 9-5 record. SIUE's record includes its 7-5 record in the fall and its 2-0 record this spring.
Seniors Keli Keener (Bethalto) and Katy McKay (Caseyville) each finished their final season with a 12-4 individual record. Keener was tabbed All-Great Lakes Valley Conference last fall at the GLVC Tournament.
"I'm proud of the women's team," Coach Bill Logan said. "They finished on a winning note. At 9-5, they can look forward to next season in a positive way."
SIUE will return Coryn Reich (Newton), Allison Coats (Belleville), Chrissy Yingst (Belleville) and Gina Wohltman (Effingham) to next year's team. "The girls returning have all improved, and I'm looking forward to next season with them," Logan said.
The SIUE baseball team defeated Southern Indiana Sunday (4/6) in what was the first game of a 12-game road trip. SIUE, 14-14 overall and 8-9 in the Great Lakes Valley Conference, will play at Kentucky Wesleyan on Wednesday (4/9) before traveling to non-conference foes Lincoln and Rockhurst.
The Cougars split a doubleheader with Kentucky Wesleyan (13-12, 5-9 GLVC) earlier this season at Roy Lee Field.
"We need to continue to play better," Coach Gary Collins said.
SIUE then plays a single game at Lincoln on Friday (4/11) before playing a three-game series with Rockhurst that includes a doubleheader Saturday (4/12) and a single game Sunday (4/13).
Ryan Spurgeon (Bethalto) leads the pitching staff with a 1.71 ERA. He earned his first win of the season Sunday (4/6) in SIUE's 9-2 victory at Southern Indiana after throwing seven innings and allowing two runs on two hits. "Spurgeon pitched a great game Sunday," Collins said.
Jason Kessler (Mattoon) continues to lead the team in hitting with a .406 batting average.
The SIUE baseball team has a chance to surpass the .500 barrier for the first time since the third game of the season when it plays host to Quincy in a single game at Roy Lee Field on Wednesday (4/2). The first pitch is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.
The Cougars are coming off a three-win road trip at Lewis to bring their overall record to 12-12 and their Great Lakes Valley Conference record to 6-7. Quincy (14-10, 6-3 GLVC) is coming off a four-game sweep of Bellarmine that helped launch the Hawks into fourth place in the conference standings. "They always get up for us," said Coach Gary Collins. "I hope we can get up for them."
Following Wednesday's game, the Cougars then play a home-and-home series with Southern Indiana. The teams square off Saturday (4/5) at noon at Roy Lee Field, then will finish the two-game series Sunday (4/6) in Evansville, Ind.
USI is near the bottom of the conference standings with a 2-7 GLVC record. "Neither of us has been playing very well, so I don't know what to expect," Collins said.
Jason Kessler (Mattoon) is pacing the Cougar offense with a .385 batting average. He also has a team-high 19 RBIs and is tied for the team lead in home runs with two. Luke Humphrey (Rantoul) is second on the team with a .360 batting average and has hit all five of SIUE's triples. Ryan Spurgeon (Bethalto) leads the pitching staff with a 1.86 earned run average. Brian Keating (St. Louis), who threw a no-hitter two weeks ago, has a 2-2 record with a 2.42 ERA.
The SIUE softball team will play at Quincy on Wednesday (4/2) before traveling outside of the Great Lakes Valley Conference for matchups against Mississippi Women and Alabama-Huntsville.
SIUE (20-6, 7-1 GLVC) went 9-1 in its recent 10-game home stand. Its only loss came Sunday (3/30) in extra innings against Northern Kentucky. "I'm pleased with the 9-1 record," said Coach Sandy Montgomery. "But with the goals and expectations of our team, we do not want to lose at all."
Quincy is near the bottom of the conference standings with a 4-17 overall record and a 1-7 conference mark. "We want to get back on a winning track," Montgomery said.
SIUE will then play Mississippi Women on Saturday (4/5) before playing a doubleheader Sunday (4/6) against Alabama-Huntsville.
Alabama-Huntsville, the 16th-ranked team in the nation, has defeated several nationally ranked teams, including No. 1 Barry.
"This trip is a good chance to play good competition in the middle of the year," Montgomery said. "Alabama-Huntsville has beaten some good teams. We've battled them in games in the past, and we'll battle with them this weekend."
Junior Jenny Esker (Steeleville) leads the potent Cougar offense with a .475 batting average. She has a team-leading five home runs and 22 runs batted in. Freshman Holly Neuerburg (Orion) is hitting .379 and has driven in 20 runs. RyAnn Spann (Bethalto) leads a pitching staff that has a 1.51 team ERA. Spann has a 11-3 record and has recorded 87 strikeouts.