Men's Basketball - Tue, Feb. 8, 2005
Joliet, Ill. - Jabari Saunders (Joliet, Ill./Joliet Township), a junior forward on the Saint Xavier University men's basketball team, and Rachel Merkell (Munster, Ind./Munster), a senior forward on the SXU women's basketball team, were named the Men's and Women's Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) Basketball Players of the Week, respectively, when the honors were released by the conference office Tuesday in Joliet, Ill. Both teams went 2-0 in league play on the week.
Saunders averaged 16.5 points and 5.5 rebounds over the two games finishing with game-highs of 20 points and eight rebounds in Wednesday's 76-46 win over Indiana University-South Bend. Saunders also shot very well from the field hitting 13 of his 16 attempts over the two-game stretch. Saunders is currently shooting 72.4 percent (142-for-196) from the field on the season, the second-best individual field-goal percentage in the NAIA.
Merkell had an impressive week in helping Saint Xavier extend its current seven-game win streak. In last Tuesday's 88-85 win over Olivet Nazarene University, she finished with 10 points, 13 rebounds, six assists and a SXU record seven blocked shots. Then, in Saturday's 64-61 road win over Indiana University-South Bend, Merkell surpassed the 1,000-point mark for her career with a team-high tying 17 points. She also finished with four rebounds and a team-high four steals in the win.