Why is blogging happening so late this year? Because we’re used to knowing something. We’re used to being able to extrapolate meaning out of all of this data, but this year the data is meaningless. We ended up in basketball really randomly and, via the demographic we came from, we’re aware that if we can’t make sense of these numbers -no one can.
If someone tells you they can make sense of them, they’re lying. It’s like someone saying they can drive in the snow in Seattle. We grew up driving in eastern Washington, Idaho, and Montana snow and through those mountain passes in the winter. We can drive in the snow just fine. We cannot drive in the snow in Seattle because Seattle usually sits around 20 degrees when it snows (even at night) and warms up as sunlight hits it, thus it’s nothing but a mess of ice with the constant thaw-refreeze-thaw that happens as any given day-of-snow goes on.
It’s impossible drive in Seattle in the snow.
It’s impossible to take any meaning out of these numbers.
And that’s why we’re struggling to put up posts on time. It’s not that we don’t care, it’s not that we’re not following things insanely closely, it’s that as much as we love highlighting these guys… We want the highlights to be real. And right now without context we don’t know what real is.
For the (ahem Central) people that are like “you just don’t care as much because SPU is a mess” um, it’s a pretty darn good year for our alma mater to be a mess considering with the level of parity, we essentially have 11 teams in the GNAC in play.
Yes. 11. 11 teams. Simon Fraser, welcome to the Club.
There are definite player highlights from the past weekend we can touch on…
NNU 53 “@” CSU East Bay 71
-Bouna N’Diaye went 7-9 from the field, finishing with 14 points
-Maurice Jones went 6-7 from the field, finishing with 17 points and eight boards.
NNU 68 @ Chico 79
-Bouna N’Diaye and Kalieb Rodrieguez both finished with 17 points apiece.
Funny/fun game just because they actually got Chico to push the tempo. Usually Chico is a defensive grind it out, which is incredible, but can be fun to see the points rise. We like Chico. They and UCSD are “our” CCAA teams.
WOU 65 “@” Westminster 58
-Tanner Omlid had 10 boards, five steals, and 23 points.
-Malik Leaks had 10 points off the bench.
WOU 73 @ Dixie State 78
-Tanner Omlid had 7 assists and zero turnovers.
Once again… We really have to compliment WOU on how well they take care of the basketball. Another funny thing because along with lack of SOS, how many turnovers those mid-2000s Romar teams had was the other major complaint. The Wolves definitely have that one taken care of; and WOU’s SOS is admittedly better this year than last.
SFU 67 “@” CU-Irvine 80
-TYRELL LEWIN HAD 24 POINTS ON 12-12 SHOOTING.
-JJ Pankratz had 19 points.
MSUB 86 “@” Western State (CO) 77
-Kendall Denham had 14 points off the bench.
MSUB 83 @ Colorado Mesa 68
-Jace Anderson went 6-6 from the line and finished with 22 points.
SPU 79 “@” Point Loma 86
-Tony Miller had 11 boards
SPU 73 @ Azusa Pacific 68
-Coleman Wooten had 14 boards.
Fresno Pacific 58 “@” UAF 74
-Bangaly Kaba went 9-10 from the line and finished with 17 points.
Fresno Pacific 66 @ WWU 75
-Jeffrey Parker went 7-7 from the line and finsihed with 21 points.
Essentially those were the best numbers the games had to offer. We’re only doing that because the rest… Our arms are crossed and we’re waiting. We believe in all of them, but this isn’t little league. Some will score more, some will score less. Some teams will win more, some teams will win less. And the numbers will matter. Eventually.
Conference play starts tonight. CU-PDX @ WOU. The obvious thing is that WOU is going to beat Concordia and we feel pretty confident in that pick. We’re very proud of Tanner. If you make our pre-season all conference team and then play well, you’ll be in our good book for a long time. If you play badly, we’ll openly complain about you the following year even if you’re sitting within earshot.
We’ll do POW here in a bit, although the nominations and award will probably be in the same post since so few teams played two actual D2 games. Still means just as much, but most of the time we try not to bombard people with posts.
Other than that… We see a Phil Jackson-style shenanigans post in the near future, no pun intended.
First and foremost: So many games, such a lack of posting and tweeting, never to happen again. This is why you don’t try and sit between two chairs. The blog is committed to all ten teams. We’ll also be regularly checking in with Concordia-Portland in anticipation of next year.
College basketball on a Friday night… sacrilege to the high school game, but oh well.
Central Washington 65, Minnesota-Crookston 52
Nicely done Wildcats!! Admittedly we knew MN-Crookston’s record last year, but they got an entirely new coaching staff, Central is dealing with almost an entirely new team, and… they’ve got a good rotation. Jordan Russell had 17 points off the bench, along with 6 rebounds; Joseph Shroud had 16 points off the bench, Gary Jacobs with a well-rounded performance of a FULL HOUSE. Even with a terrible A/TO, the blocks and steals are hard to come by so we’ll give him credit anyway.
Player of the game: Gary Jacobs.
Hawaii Hilo 89, Northwest Nazarene 81
While not a victory for the Crusaders, that is still a darn respectable score. NNU has potential this year, particularly considering how balanced their minutes and scoring was; nine guys played at least thirteen minutes. Four players scored in the double digits: Bouna N’Diaye, Erik Kinney, Aubrey Ball, and Kevin Rima.
Kevin Rima… HAD A DOUBLE-DOUBLE!! Nicely done Kevin. Kevin is obviously our player of the game.
CSU East Bay 86, MSU-Billings 80.
The bad news? The MSUB bench contributed almost nothing. The good news? Their scorers are starting to come out of the woodwork. Gary Gordon had 22 points and eight rebounds; Momir Gataric had 13 points and a block; Antoine Hosley (formerly of UW) had 21 points; and…
Austin Hudson had a double-double, with 20 points and 12 boards!! He also had TWO blocks. Player of the game, right there.
They may have lost the battle, but we’ll consider this game a step in the right direction in terms of the Yellowjackets winning the war.
Fresno Pacific 87, Saint Martin’s 67
There isn’t much to say when a team loses by twenty. This wasn’t a moral victory. The highlights for Saint Martin’s include that Tyler Copp scored 17 points, Ryan Rogers had 11 points, Isaac Bianchini had 12 points off the bench, and Tyler Iwodu had eight points and six rebounds for the spot as the Saints’ leading rebounder. Trey Ingram highlights with an amazing 7-0 assist to turnover ratio; he scored a mere five points, but… talk about unselfish play and prototypically what you want in a point guard.
Nice job Trey; player of the game.
Academy of Art 70, Seattle Pacific 67
The Falcons need to prove themselves and they need to do it now. Academy of Art could be better than we were thinking they’d be, or they could be terrible. They looked good against SPU. There’s rational to say that we should still remain calm about the Falcons because the season is so early and they lost by so little, but like Western… What SPU does or doesn’t do holds so much on how the rest of the conference is perceived that… GET IT TOGETHER.
Player highlights include Mitch Penner with 17 points and nine rebounds, Riley Stockton with nine rebounds and eight points, and Cory Hutsen with 10 points and six rebounds.
Player of the game: Mitch Penner.
Simon Fraser 160, Northwest Indian 99
At this point, it doesn’t matter that the defense looks like bologna and the team is way below D2. SFU BEAT A NON-CONFERENCE OPPONENT. And they scored 160. There are teams like SPU where we expect more and teams like SFU where we expect less; sorry Falcons, Vikings, Wolves, and Seawolves in advance. Still… SFU, go Clan!
Seven players scored at least 10 points. In order of the stat sheet: Sango Niang 14 points, eight assists, three steals, 0 turnovers; Justin Cole 16 points, three steals; Roderick Evans-Taylor 19 points, 10 rebounds, seven steals, three assists, and one block -again a bad A/TO but the man still had a full house; Patrick Simon II 14 points, six rebounds; JJ Pankratz 13 points; Adam Westfall 21 points; Hidde Vos 17 points, five assists.
Player of the game of course goes to Roderick Evans-Taylor.
Western Washington 78, Notre Dame de Namur 52
Sorry Vikings; you did exactly what you were supposed to do. Good job. This is mundane: Joey Schreiber had 19 points, seven rebounds; Jeffrey Parker had 21 points, seven rebounds; Anye had five points, seven blocks and seven rebounds; Kyle Impero had seven rebounds and picked up four fouls, which is impressive for a guard.
Vikings, your bench provided almost nothing in any statistical category; there is the concern. Our entire conference relies on you, which you know. Sorry about that. We believe in you Vikings, hence the bashing of heads going “you won by 26, but…” Seriously WWU, gotta do it, gotta set the standard. Ahem, last year; let’s not talk about it all that often.
Player of the game: Anye. Yes it’s biased. Sorry Jeff and Kyle. But especially in a gym like Carver, blocks can change an outcome massively.
Point Loma 64, Western Oregon 54
Here we go again… Wolves, you’re better than this. You beat Oregon State. You need to bounce back. The Nike U. loss meant nothing. Your rebounding performance and play off the bench in this game was dismal. Andy Avgi had 15 points and four rebounds; Lew Thomas had 11 points and six rebounds… Wake up Wolves. You’re supposed to be challenging for second place, considering what Anchorage has been dealing with.
Player of the game: Lew Thomas.
Sonoma State 74, Alaska Anchorage 66
Once again: Seriously Seawolves? Were you drinking too much Coppertone while you were down there? You’re better than this. We outrage because we adore. Aaaaand we find that answer in your rebounding. Commit Seawolves, you gotta commit. You have the second best home advantage in the conference and just because you’re on the road doesn’t mean anything. You can do this. Brian McGill had 25 points, Travis Thompson had 21 points, and no one else really had anything of note. The starters played a lot of minutes.
Trinity Int’l 83, Alaska-Fairbanks 73
Really Nooks? At Home? You let Trinity beat you at home? Your home court advantage is another that shouldn’t be understated. The good news is Adam Griffin scored 17 points off the bench; Ruben Silvas had an incredibly balanced seven rebounds, two steals, four assists, and nine points; and four players had at least six rebounds. While you didn’t win the war, you won many battles. We know you’re rebuilding and from the looks of the effort -you’re going to be just fine.
There is still plenty of hope left for you UAF.
Player of the game goes to Ruben Silvas.
Wow! Yes this went up late. If we missed anybody, please let us know. Leave a comment, tweet at us. Up next is our Player of the Week nominations.
Holy Names plays @ CSU Monterey Bay, @ CSU Dominguez Hills, and Sonoma State.
Dominican plays @ CSU Dominguez Hills, CSU East Bay, Sonoma State, @ Chico State, and San Francisco State
Cal Baptist plays @ CSU Dominguez Hills, and @ San Francisco State,
Point Loma plays CSU Dominguez Hills, @ Cal Poly Pomona, and Cal State Los Angeles.
Fresno Pacific plays @ Cal State Los Angeles.
Academy of Art plays @ San Francisco State.
Dixie State plays Stanislaus.
A final tally of 19 games involving all but four Pac-West conference schools; the Hawaii schools are too busy playing GNAC schools to get into the mix against the CCAA.
The first thing that stands out is that Dixie State plays CSU-Stanislaus. From a conference perspective, Stanislaus was the team that beat SPU in the tournament during OT, Dixie State beat SPU in OT in non-conference last year, the teams are going to be different but there’s still a connection. Stanislaus is rather reminiscent of MSUB in terms of the GNAC; they got really good as the season progressed and so their conference record didn’t necessarily reflect their capabilities. Always fun to watch those teams.
For the most part the schedule above shows mismatches of the strong playing the theoretical weak. There are only a few tournament teams that play each other. It’s becoming a trend that the tournament teams tend to play smaller division schools. I wish this was more frowned upon; as I’ve noted: I’m a big fan of strength of schedule, just because… compelling match-ups are compelling. While we’ll always say ‘any given year’ c’mon! Let’s get more of the frequent tournament teams playing each other. I grew up in the Pac-10, where beating each other up is not only expected but encouraged.
And unlike football, basketball schedules aren’t set in stone years ahead of time; while there’s some early scheduling, there’s still plenty of room to move even during the month of August. No, there’s probably concern about reputation on a national level and the whole “no one really wins when everyone has an average record” but… even as a REGION, the number of D2 teams we collectively play outside of our region is negligible, plus doesn’t really matter because only one team is gonna make the Elite 8 anyway.
Originally the plan was to post the CCAA, GNAC, and Pac-West D2 non-west region match-ups, but the CCAA is yet to post their composite schedule, so we shall see what’s on the horizon for tomorrow.
NNU plays Hawaii-Hilo, Notre Dame de Namur, and @ Dominican.
SMU plays Fresno Pacific, Point Loma, Azusa Pacific, and @ Dixie State.
WOU plays @ Point Loma, Fresno Pacific, Azusa Pacific, and @ Dixie State.
SPU plays Academy of Art, @ Hawaii Pacific, @ BYU-Hawaii, @ Hawaii-Hilo, and @ Dixie State.
CWU plays Academy of Art, @ BYU-Hawaii, and @ Hawaii Pacific.
WWU plays Notre Dame de Namur and Hawaii-Hilo.
MSUB plays @ Dixie State and @ Hawaii Pacific.
SFU plays @ Academy of Art, @ Dominican, and Holy Names.
UAF plays @ Notre Dame de Namur and BYU-Hawaii.
UAA plays BYU-Hawaii.
That is a grand total of 28 games. Dixie State is the big highlight on the schedule, but I’m not a person that thinks any team should be overlooked; the Hawaii schools are always a challenge, and you never know what any given team is going to do in a year.
Maybe things finally click, maybe they luck into a transfer that you wonder how they ever lived without –CWU got Mark McLaughlin at the last second, SPU got Jobi Wall a few years ago- maybe a player that had been buried by experience moves into the starting line-up ala Austin Bragg at WWU.
With the Pac-West, as much as I have an instinct to look at some of who we’re playing and go “Meh, that won’t tell us much,” that’s not true. Because we don’t know what those teams are going to be like and even if they’re not up at the top of the conference pecking order, it can give us a chance to figure out who we are.
CWU had a pretty bad moment with that last year playing Hawaii Pacific; it wasn’t a matter of HPU winning, it was a matter of CWU losing because of a raging case of apathy in the final 10 minutes of game play.
You may note that SPU plays more Pac-West teams than anyone else -this is likely a mix of tradition, not having as many tiny school obligations nearby, and the coaching staff feeling the need to know what they’re dealing with on a more tangible level.
Do I wish we as a conference played more within the West Region? Yeah, after all, it is an official listing on the NCAA Rankings: Overall Record and Region Record. It’s also fun to see the schools match up and have November be potentially a March preview. There’s so much growth and development that goes on during conference play and in years like last when it was parity central… it teaches us to embrace the head scratching.
Currently I’d like to see way more games with the CCAA because my history with D1 says I’m all about strength of schedule, but…
Going into last year, we didn’t necessarily know that the CCAA would be the strength of schedule in the West; the GNAC just as often has that role. In the Pac-West, Cal Baptist made a HUGE splash in making their conference more challenging. That was great. And then the West Region on the whole was weak, which was fairly obvious from the beginning but… you never know.
With that… up next is the Pac-West vs. the CCAA.