UCF Exhibition Game set for Thursday

Nov. 8, 2006

ORLANDO, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Fans will be able to get their first look at the 2006-07 UCF men's basketball team on Thursday, Nov. 9 when the Golden Knights host St. Leo for an exhibition game at the UCF Arena at 7:30 p.m. Admission to the contest is free.

The game will serve as UCF's lone preseason contest. Head coach Kirk Speraw's squad opens the regular season on Wednesday, Nov. 15 at home versus cross-town opponent Rollins at 7:30 p.m.

The Golden Knights return eight letterwinners from last season's 14-15 squad, including senior forward Josh Peppers (Memphis, Tenn./Whitehaven HS) and junior guard Mike O'Donnell (Largo, Fla./Largo HS). Peppers is one of the top returning players in Conference USA after averaging 13.7 points per game in 2005-06. He needs just 66 points to become the 13th 1,000-point scorer in program history. O'Donnell started all 29 games at point guard last season and averaged four assists.

Several Golden Knights will play a game on the UCF Arena floor for the first time on Thursday, including freshman forward Tony Davis (Sarasota, Fla./Riverview HS). Davis was named the Florida Class 6A Player of the Year last season after averaging 20.7 points and 12.2 rebounds per contest.

UCF is entering its second season in C-USA. The team went 7-7 in league play to finish fifth a year ago. The Golden Knights concluded the campaign by winning four of its last six contests, including a 65-52 victory over East Carolina in the first round of the conference championship.

Dating back to the start of the 2002-03 season, the Golden Knights have won 84 games - mark that ranks 39th nationally and second in the state of Florida. Speraw has led UCF to two of the last three NCAA Tournaments.

St. Leo, a Division II team, returns two starters from last season's team that went 8-21 overall. The Lions faced USF in a preseason game on Monday and the Bulls claimed a 66-50 win.

This season will serve as the Golden Knights' final campaign at the UCF Arena. The program will play in the new Convocation Center on campus next year.

Free parking is available at the North Plaza Garage, located at the corner of Gemini Boulevard and Orion Boulevard. Parking is available for $5 at the East Plaza Garage, which is located next to the new Wayne Densch Sports Center.

Season tickets are currently available by calling 407-UCF-1000. For the latest news and information on the Golden Knights, tickets or apparel, log on to www.ucfathletics.com - the official site for UCF athletics.