Game Time: Tri-state products Hall and Niemann set for first sea - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Game Time: Tri-state products Hall and Niemann set for first season at WIU

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Former Canton all-state guard Tori Niemann transferred to WIU following two seasons at Mizzou. Former Canton all-state guard Tori Niemann transferred to WIU following two seasons at Mizzou.
Former West Hancock all-state forward Marley Hall played two seasons at Illinois State before transferring to Western Illinois. Former West Hancock all-state forward Marley Hall played two seasons at Illinois State before transferring to Western Illinois.

MACOMB, Ill. (WGEM) -- It was just a couple years ago that former Canton all-state guard Tori Niemann was playing at the University of Missouri.

At the same time, former West Hancock all-state forward Marley Hall was at Illinois State.

Fast forward to now, where both local products are getting set for their first official season at Western Illinois after sitting out 2012 following their transfer to Macomb.

"At Mizzou I learned so much and I feel like I can bring some of that learning experience to the team," Niemann told WGEM Sports.

"It's very exciting," Marley Hall added.

"It's been a long time coming and I'm sure Tori said the same thing, it's just a long process."

"Both of them really add a lot of versatility," WIU head coach JD Gravina expressed.

"I mean Tori can really play any position on the court. Marley is such a great passer and shooter for her size."

As Gravina enters his third season, Leatherneck stock continues to rise with more success each year.

The addition of Niemann and Hall could be the final pieces of the puzzle for serious contention in the Summit League.

"They both have that experience at quote unquote a bigger division one school, and I think having that experience can help take us to that level," Gravina said.

"We're so excited and it's just a matter of what it comes down to in the end, just how hard we play," Niemann added.

"We've got the heart and hopefully we can do our job and go out there and win."

"It's really exciting," said Hall.

"I think we have talent in every aspect, and I think we should be a really good team."

While the Leathernecks gear up for the 2013-2014 season, the buzz has already started building from fans ready to see familiar faces at Western Hall.

"People want to come watch us play," said Niemann.

"They know about Marley, they know about me, they want to see us play together and there's a lot of excitement."

"I've already heard about people wanting to get a bus to come up from Warsaw, and I know the whole Niemann clan will be at games," added Gravina.

"It's fun for the fans to get to follow kids high school careers and then get to see how they do especially at the division I level."

Fans won't have to wait much longer to see the local duo take the floor.

Western hosts Quincy University on Thursday, October 31st to kick off it's preseason schedule in Macomb.

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