Boxing Day Blog Blast #1: The Last of Non-Con.

Hey Blog Fam! We hope your holidays were better than ours… We got berated twice for daring to have facial piercings, and because it’s Christmas… A reminder that Jesus loves everyone. And Saturn loves rings, so we’re good there too.

We’re going to go ahead and do the schools in groups in our usual order, so if you’re looking for our thoughts on the WOU/Dixie game, scroll to the bottom.

Other than that… Let’s jump right in.

Southeastern Oklahoma 88, Alaska-Anchorage 68

What does it mean? Not sure and don’t really care, which is the good news for Anchorage; the Savage Storm of Southeastern Oklahoma is in the Central region, so it doesn’t affect strength of schedule anyway. Anchorage needs the autobid in order to make the tournament, so… Hopefully they learned something this game, and that’s all that matters.

Seawolf highlights: DeAndre Osuigwe had eight boards; Tyler Brimhall had 20 points and five boards on solid shooting; Tobin Karlberg had 13 points; and off the bench Oggie Pantovic had 10 points.

DeAndre continues to impress and so we’re excited to see him in conference play.

Alaska Anchorage 66, Hilo 64

The good news is that it’s west region. The bad news is that Hilo doesn’t look to be a particularly good team, but… West region. It’s west region. So it does matter, if minimally, which is good for the Seawolves because this game looked bad.

Seawolf highlights: DeAndre Osuigwe had 16 points and five boards; and TOBIN KARLBERG went 5-7 from three and finished with 21 points. Off the bench Tyrus Hosley had 14 points; and Oggie Pantovic had six points, seven boards, and five fouls.

The Pac-West doesn’t look that great, so… We’re 50/50 on whether that makes this win better or worse. But a win is a win is a win.

Arkansas-Monticello 83, Alaska-Anchorage 74

Another game that doesn’t matter. While AR-Monticello looks solid and we’ve seen their name on the bracket a number of times, it still doesn’t matter because it’s not West nor South Central region. And we’re not fond of the South Central games anyway.

Seawolf highlights: DeAndre Osuigwe had a heck of a tournament, finishing this game with 16 points and five boards; and TOBIN KARLBERG had 21 points on lights-out shooting. Off the bench Amari Hale had six points; Tyrus Hosley had 14 points; and Oggie Pantovic had a full house among six points, seven boards, and five fouls.

Well congrats Anchorage, you made it through. Hopefully you learned a lot and didn’t get too exhausted because conference play kicks into gear in a week and you play the Puget Sound schools. Good luck with that.

Simon Fraser 86, Southeastern Oklahoma 83 in OT.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, blah, blah, blah, this game doesn’t matter, but… Wins are happy.

Clan highlights: Othniel Spence had five boards; Wil Balata had 19 points, nine boards, and five fouls among a plethora of field stats and while going 7-8 from the charity stripe; Mike Provenzano had 11 points and five assists; JASDEEP SINGH had 32 points and six boards; and Julian Roche had five boards. No real bench play.

We’re curious to see what Julian Roche looks like throughout the season; he was super impressive this year, but between him and Logan Schilder, teams are going to prioritize actually practicing to neutralize them, simply because with one it’s meh, but with two you do the work.

CO School of Mines 58, Simon Fraser 53

School of Mines has a lot of wins, but we’re 50/50 on the quality. This does count toward SOS, but… SFU needs the autobid, so good learning game, but moot at this point.

Clan highlights: Othniel Spence had five boards; Wil Balata had nine boards; Mike Provenzano had 11 points and five assists; Jas had a double-double with 12 points and nine boards; Julian Roche barely played; and off the bench Corey Nzigamasabo had seven points and five fouls.

Really curious about the lack of play by Julian, especially considering it was close and this game did actually matter.

Simon Fraser 74, Hawaii Pacific 67

Another west region game! Yay! Hawaii Pacific doesn’t project well, but again: A win is a win is a win, and this is a west region one.

Clan highlights: Othniel Spence had 11 points and four steals; Wil Balata had 16 points and seven boards while going 5-6 from the line and shooting well from the field; Mike Provenzano had 18 points and a plethora of field stats, finally; and Julian Roche had 11 points while playing 32 minutes.

We’re not sure what the deal is with Drew Bryson and Michael Hannan; usually both can be decently relied upon for quality bench minutes, but… Not so far, or at least not in this tournament.

Congrats Simon Fraser on taking 2/3 including potentially a QualityLoss™.

CO School of Mines 80, Saint Martin’s 60.

This is actually bad for our entire Region. The thought is that East Bay is good, SMU played them tight and it looked like a quality-ish win. This destroys that, because even if CO School of Mines turns out to be pretty good, they’re not that good, and thus it devalues the west region as a whole.

Saints highlights: Demonte Malloy had 10 points and six boards; John Moore had 13 points and seven boards; and off the bench Logan Rooney had five boards.

Woof. Yikes. What the heck. Oof. And this was after sweeping the Eastern schools. Oh dear.

Hilo 77, Saint Martin’s 70

Once again: Oof. Bad for our conference in a big way, because Hilo projects as lower middle of what’s expected to be a down Pac-West, meanwhile SMU just beat both NNU and CWU.

Saints highlights: Alex Schumacher played 40 full minutes and grabbed six boards; Demonte Malloy had 23 points; John Moore had six boards; MARKY ADAMS had 12 points and 13 boards for the double-double; and off the bench Logan Rooney had eight points and four boards among a full house of stats.

These numbers say “suicides until every single person pukes.” Zero discipline. Zero teamwork outside of Marky and Logan. There’s not even a point in discussing it.

Arkansas-Monticello 93, Saint Martin’s 68

In a way, this game matters in the sense that it means SMU went 0-3 for this tournament. But that’s basically it. Truth be told the Saints are still fine because they were going to need the autobid either way and they’re 2-0 in conference play, so all good.

Saints highlights: Alex Schumacher had 18 points and six boards; Demonte Malloy had 16 points and six boards; Marky Adams had five boards; and off the bench Logan Rooney had 14 points; while Caden Smith had six points.

Congrats on getting through the weekend SMU. Really embraced that Island culture by drowning. Nicely done.

MSU-Billings 85, Pittsburg State 76.

Yay! More games that don’t matter.

Jacket highlights: Chrishon Dixon had eight boards; ZHARON RICHMOND had 30 points and nine boards; Tyler Green had 22 points and a whopping 10 assists while going 8-10 from the charity stripe; Brendan Howard had 15 points and five boards; and off the bench Clarence Daniels had six points.

Nicely done Yellowjackets because a win is a win.

Rollins 58, MSU-Billings 54.

Yet another game that doesn’t matter, but we do like Rollins and the Sunshine Conference. Six years ago when we started in on this blog project, it was the Sunshine Conference Commissioner that immediately reached out on twitter and was like “oh thank god, I can never stay awake for your games.” We do our best.

Jacket highlights: Zharon Richmond had nine boards and went 7-8 from the line; Tyler Green had five boards; and Brendan Howard had 19 points and eight boards.

Congrats on getting a split that absolutely does not matter in the slightest, MSUB.

Western Oregon 91 vs. Dixie State 76

Alright, this whole post has been a slog but this result warms our bitter little non-west region hating heart. Dixie is currently ranked 6th in the NABC coaches poll and 5th in the D2 SID poll. Our opinion for the last several years is that doing any non-region based D2 ranking is trash, and… Here’s more evidence. Not because we don’t believe in WOU; we think they’ll make the conference tournament, but just because didn’t believe in Dixie, they were ranked ridiculously high, and here they are getting blown-out by a team from a down league in a down region.

Wolf highlights: Jaylyn Richardson had 27 points and nine boards among a full house of stats; Cameron Cranston had 20 points; Dalven Brushier had five boards; Darius Lubom had 12 points, five boards, and four assists; and John Morrill-Keeler had eight boards. Still no real bench play.

WHAAAAT??? Wolves, we love you so much. Some outstanding numbers, but super shallow in terms of quality rotation guys and yet y’all got the blow-out anyway. Merry flippin’ Christmas. And yeah: Usually we like Dixie-ish because we were at so many Regionals with them, but… RMAC is as RMAC does, and the RMAC is usually a good and very deep league, so.. What does this mean? Who knows?

Alright, writing this out explains exactly why we had zero desire to do it as the games were occurring. So many pointless, pointless, POINTLESS games. But we told y’all about them, more Boxing Day posts are on the way, and then we dive into conference play next week.

Be safe, have fun, go GNAC!