Yup -up a day late. Saturday was a late night that should’ve been even later. Sorry to all of those that got an initial link in their inbox that didn’t work until 10am.
We’ll just go ahead and address the elephant in the room right now:
Seattle Pacific 66 @ Western Washington 68
The WWU/SPU game ended with a lay-up at the buzzer leading to a WWU win. It doesn’t matter what side of the SPU/WWU debate you fall on -if you fall on the side that you enjoy honest basketball, you should be uneasy right now. That play should’ve been reviewed heavily, they should’ve cleared the court to do it. Any more than that, what the call should’ve been afterward -you can decide. But because it was a buzzer beater, for the sake of honest and fair basketball it should have been thoroughly scrutinized.
Remember that whole -it’s not who wins and who loses, but how you play the game? To be frank, Seattle Pacific played like crap. They didn’t deserve to win the game, especially considering it happened while WWU was without Jaamon Echols. The Falcons didn’t do what they needed to do, they played lethargically, they weren’t as committed as they could’ve been. That’s never going to work in Carver. Not sure what they were expecting -another 16 point route like last year? Please. Pathetic.
The SPU highlights: Riley Stockton had 14 rebounds, four assists, and nine points; Mitch Penner went 9-10 from the line and picked up five boards; Shawn Reid went 8-14, 3-4 from three, and picked up seven boards. That was it.
The lowlights would take all day, so we’ll only address a few: Cory Hutsen went 4-13, leading to an interesting question of: how do you go 4-13 while no more than five feet away from the basket? The dude seemed terrified to bang, which HELLO, YOU’RE 6’8 AND WEIGH 240LBS. GET OVER IT. It’s one thing to be wary of fouls, but entirely different to be so terrified of committing them that you get walked all over. The bench Bigs contributed almost nothing. Again: WWU was without Jaamon Echols, so… what were the Falcons doing? Playing poorly.
WWU actually didn’t have many highlights either, so as much as the Falcons were off -their defense wasn’t as bad as it seemed. Highlights for the Vikings: Anye Turner had nine rebounds and five assists; Mac Johnson had a great game going 4-6 from the line and grabbing eight boards; Ricardo Maxwell went 5-7 from the line and finished with 17 points. As noted: the Vikings were without Jaamon Echols, so this was a massive win.
With the overall game: Simon Fraser and the rest of the teams in the conference would be due to watch it. Not because it’s particularly valuable film on the two respective teams, but because the defense displayed for 65% of it was top notch.
Alaska-Anchorage 76 @ Alaska-Fairbanks 64
Not a bad game for either team -Fairbanks was incredibly balanced, UAA got a nice win on the road and also showed a good bit of balance.
Highlights for the Seawolves include Travis Thompson going 7-11 and 5-6 from the line, along with five rebounds and four assists; Brian McGil picked up ten points; Dom Hunter also had 10 points, Christian Leckbend had six rebounds, and Derrick Fain had 10 points on better shooting than is normally seen from him.
With the Nooks: Ruben Silvas had 10 points, five boards, and three assists; Ashton chipped in four assists and eleven points; Anthony Reese went 6-7, added four rebounds, two assists, one steal, one block, and two player fouls and NO turnovers for a full house and a grand total of 11 points; Almir Hadzisehovic went 5-7 and contributed 12 points; and then Eric Fongue added six boards.
Not a game to write home about, but some solid numbers all the same.
MSUB 111 @ Simon Fraser 104
Yellowjackets got it done against the Clan. Nicely job MSUB.
Plenty of player highlights for the Yellowjackets on modified numbers: Marc Matthews had 12 points, five boards, and four assists; Jordan Perry had 14 points, three boards, and three assists; Momir Gataric added 11 points; Antoine Hosley also chipped in 12. Field numbers needed help, but not a bad game.
Simon Fraser: Sango had 16 points and three assists; Justin Colre had 14 points, five rebounds, and two steals; the rest got it done through teamwork.
Central Washington 74 @ Western Oregon 78
Broken record: Good teams find a way to get it done and that’s exactly what WOU did.
Central Washington highlights: Joe Stroud went 7-7 and 3-5 from the line finishing with 17 points along with five rebounds, two steals, three blocks, and three player fouls; Dom Williams finished with 11 points on his typical atrocious shooting; Terry Dawn went 5-8 and had 12 points along with four fouls; Jordan Russell also had a horrible shooting percentage but finished with nine points, five rebounds, two assists, and one steal.
Western Oregon highlights: Julian Nichols went 7-8 from the line, added two rebounds, six assists, and two steals; Lew Thomas added 12 rebounds, one assist, and two steals, finishing with nine points; Jordan Wiley finished with 10 points; Andy Avgi went 9-14 and 4-4 from the line to finish with 23 points and four rebounds; Marwan Sarhan added ten points off the bench. The team went 80% from the line, which is always helpful.
One intense game of basketball. The flip side of this game is going to hold considerable intrigue considering the home court advantage that Central boasts. We shall see.
Northwest Nazarene 72 @ Saint Martin’s 68 in OT
Pretty much done dealing with the Saints at this point. NNU is essentially inverse of SMU. They play with heart, they’re committed, they want to win, it’s obvious, they work together, no player is too good to get down and dirty. That is awesome to see and they got a great reward with a win tonight.
TWO Northwest Nazarene players had a full house: Alex Birketoft finished with 16 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block, and two playre fouls; Kevin Rima also had 16 points, but had a whopping 11 boards, two assists, two steals, one block, and four player fouls; Erik Kinney added five points with five rebounds, a steal, and two blocks; Mike Wright added 12 points along with four assists, three rebounds, two steals, and four player fouls; Bouna N’Diaye cotnributed 18 points with two rebounds, one assists, and one steal. That is some gooood team work and for the most part great shot selection. The Crusaders also made a fantastic 86% of their free throws.
With Saint Martin’s: Riley Carel taking a page out of Riley Stockton’s book -finishing with eight rebounds and eight assists on incredibly poor shooting -although admittedly still finished with 16 points, which excuses the shooting a bit; Ryan Rogers got back in form, picking up five boards, two assists, and three steals to finish with fourteen points; Trey Ingram added 14 points and four player fouls; Tyler Copp added 11 off the bench going 4-5 and 3-4 from three. Lots of good team effort rebounds. Unfortunately, the Saints shot a mere 65% from the line and ultimately -make them when they count. It’s called charity for a reason, Saints are usually pretty familiar with the subject matter -guess the Crusaders and their plundering got the better of them.
Overall a super exciting game and it sets up yet another good match-up on the flip trip.
Congrats on a great night of basketball to all involved. Player-of-the-week nominees’ll be up in an hour, followed by the announcement an hour after that. Tomorrow is going to be a discussion day so submit questions in the comments or on twitter @GNACMBBlog.