Tagged: Northern Sun

Non-Conference Weekend #2, Day 1.

Yup, it’s going to be a back-to-back post because as much as we love the GNAC -Husky and Seahawks football took priority. And sleep. Sleep took priority. What’s interesting is we were so busy throwing-up the preview (our fingers were barfing) that we didn’t look at ANY of Friday’s numbers yesterday. Nuts. And now not any of Saturday’s numbers. It’s all a surprise o.O

Simon Fraser 81, Lindenwood 73

We weren’t even aware Lindenwood was a D2 school; we assumed it was a school on the prairies of Canada. As it turns out it is D2, so good on the Clan for scheduling them. Yayyy D2 opponents.

Clan highlights: Graham Miller was 7-7 from the line and finished with 18 points and four fouls; Michael Provenzano had seven boards, five assists, and finished with 18 points and four fouls; JJ Pankratz was back in a big way, grabbing nine boards, four blocks, and dropping 24 points while staying out of foul trouble. Off the bench Kedar Wright went 7-9 from the line and finished with 11 points in the Clan’s victory.

Dear President Donald Trump,

Thank-you for making it okay for us to say ‘Go Clan!’ and talk positively about them without being concerned about ending up on a list. Heck, if we’re not careful with all this talk of “Go Clan!” we could ended up nominated for a cabinet position.

Love,
The GNAC Men’s Basketblog


Central Washington 99, Dixie State 95 in OT

Yeaaah Wildcats! We is so proud of you. Winning in OT. Yes, it’s for all intents and purposes a home game, but any win against the region is a win we will take. And there were TONS of good numbers, so let’s get started…

Wildcat highlights: NAIM LADD had SEVEN rebounds, two assists, ZERO turnovers, and 25 points; DOM HUNTER had a whopping 33 points while going 10/11 from the line and being good from the field; Jerome Bryant did the rare thing of confusing us with his lack of shooting; he went 1-3 and then made 9-11 from the line and grabbed five boards and had five fouls. Rarely do we think ‘wow, he could have kept shooting’ but this guy did and at the same time we’re excited for him because it shows the valuable trait of knowing his role and doing a darn good job at it. Fouling and drawing fouls? Um, yeah.

Full disclaimer: Power forward is our favorite position by and far, so that position does tend to get a good bit of bias around here.


Seattle Pacific 69, MN-Makato 78

While it’s a good win for MN-Mankato, we’re not convinced it’s a bad loss for SPU because we’d so much rather lose an out-of-region game than an in-region, and Mankato could turn out to be very good; it’s too early in the season to know at this point. We’ll consider it a good learning experience, hopefully.

Falcon highlights: COLEMAN WOOTEN had 16 boards and 24 points on solid shooting; Sam Simpson had eight boards and four assists; Will Parker had five fouls; and Joe Rasmussen had five boards and nine points. Off the bench Sharif Khan had 14 points; and Tony Miller had seven boards.


Alaska-Fairbanks 68, Cal State LA 74

Huge win for the CCAA as a whole. We talk about it all the time, but: Any win in Alaska is a good win because it’s so hard to play up there. We knew CSULA was going to be improved this year, it was just a matter of time.

Nanook highlights: Nahjee Matlock had five boards and five assists; Bangaly had 10 boards and nine points; LaDonavan Wilder had five boards; and Brandon Davis had 16 points and five assists. Off the bench Reece Robinson had six points and four boards; and Michael Kluting had 10 points.


CU-Portland 57, UC San Diego 66

Way closer than anticipated. Yes, it was essentially a home game, but it’s still what we should all consider a very quality loss for the Cavalier program because we love the Cavs and anticipated a blowout so what was everyone else thinking? Yeah. It’s good.

Cavalier highlights: Drew Martin had 15 points, Latrell Wilson had five boards; Christopher Edward had a huge game with 10 points and eight boards; and off the bench Davis Nuami had four boards and three assists.

The Tritons play mad D so the numbers are less than they usually would have been for how close it was.


Alaska-Anchorage 75, BYU-Hawaii 50

Confirmed: BYU-H good at home and bad on the road. At least so far. Admittedly it’s hard to play at UAA, but in that we also need to say that: UAA has a huge homecourt advantage. Good for them. Did what needed to be done and there are lots of good numbers.

Seawolf highlights: Suki had 21 points, seven boards, and three assists; Corey Hammell had a double-double with 12 boards and 10 points; and Connor Devine had 17 points and eight boards on good shooting. Off the bench Augustus Simmers had 10 points; Damien Fulp had 10 points while perfect from the line; nad Sjur Berg had five boards.


Western Oregon 93 vs. San Fran State 99 in 3OT

Oh dear. We’d say this game was a mess on both sides but it wasn’t. San Fran State played within themselves and used it to win the game in a hard place to play. They had surprisingly few bad numbers for the fact that the game went to 3OT. Not the case with the Wolves. Still, as bad as the numbers were they stayed in it.

Wolves highlights: Bryan Berg had 15 points and five boards; Tanner Omlid had eight boards, seven assists, four steals, two blocks, and assorted other stuff while securing a full house; Ali Faruq-Bey had eight boards; Buster Souza had a “break-out” game with seven boards and fourteen points with the only passable shooting on the Wolves. Off the bench Yanick Kulich had seven boards; and Malik Leaks had six boards and nine points -guess if you can survive that surname in elementary school, you can do anything.


Saint Martin’s 60 @ Sonoma State 77

Oh dear. Growing pains. It’s okay Saints, this is going to happen. Quality loss? Perhaps. At least Tyler Copp played moderately well, because outside of him there really are very few highlights.

Saints highlights: Tyler Copp had four boards, four assists, zero turnovers, and 20 points; Brandon Kenilvort had 17 points; and off the bench Rohjhae Colbert had five boards.


Overall an interesting day for the GNAC and West Region as a whole. Not bad nor good; this day was neutral all the way around, which is interesting of itself. We honestly haven’t looked at Saturday’s results except for CWU (they keep playing early so we keep seeing those results) and so… We’ll see in a little bit.

Congrats and good effort to all involved, GNAC or otherwise.

Discussions: WOU as #1?

Publishing this an hour earlier than normal because we’re hearing rumblings that WOU may debut as the number one ranked team and so we thought we’d throw in our two cents because why not?

Well, here’s why not: We really do not pay attention to what’s going on with teams outside of the Region, for the most part. We keep a loose thread of what’s going on with:

Midwestern State -because they adopted us last year when we crashed the South Central Regional.
MSU-Moorhead -because GNAC teams played them early in the year.
Tarleton State  -because GNAC teams frequently play the Riders in non-con.

Still; we never like to miss a good chance to talk out of our rear-end, so down the rabbit hole we go. It should be noted that records listed are in-conference, not overall.

Here are the two teams ranked ahead of WOU and what they did this past week:

#1 Augustana (SD) (17-1): Lost at Northern State (10-8), then won at #8 MN-Moorhead because of course.
#2 Fairmont State (WV) (13-3): Lost to #6 West Liberty and #4 Wheeling Jesuit, it appears as though by free throws, so take the point differentials with a grain of salt.

Fairmont is going to fall, but by how much? And does it mean that WOU moves into the top spot? We have a stigma against teams we like holding the top spot ever since senior year when SPU became the number one team and then fell on our feathers against Dixie State. On the one hand, we have no problem with WOU being ranked number one: they’ve earned it, they’re a great team, we’re excited to have them hopefully host the Regional; on the other hand, because of superstition, part of us hopes the nod goes to Wheeling Jesuit.

#4 Wheeling Jesuit (15-1) -upset #2 Fairmont State (13-3), and beat Shepherd (6-10) by 8.
#5 Lincoln Memorial (16-0) -blew out two teams by 30 a piece.
#6 West Liberty (14-2) -beat #2 Fairmont State, beat Shepherd by 12.

Wheeling also gets credit in upsetting the former number one that is now #6 West Liberty earlier this year. They are a really good team with really good SOS, partly because their conference in particular (the Mountain East) seems incredibly brutal.

The obvious question to look at with Wheeling as the 4th is who the #3 team played and what their SOS is like. Oh wait.

#3 Western Oregon -beat #19 Seattle Pacific (10-4), and beat Saint Martin’s (4-10) by 12.

………………………. We really don’t know. Again: We love the Wolves, we believe in the Wolves, and in that we don’t want them to pick up the #1 ranking. That being said, from a rational standpoint, we’re incredibly torn.

We like the argument for Wheeling Jesuit, we like the argument for Lincoln Memorial because we’re not passionately vested in their SOS, and we like the argument for West Liberty to be back in the #1 spot. The thing about WOU and Wheeling is that each only played one difficult game. While we know the Wolves struggled a bit early in the SMU game… We don’t count that as a reason to hold them back. The big question is: How big was the SPU win? How good is SPU?

The Wolves got a road win, which is always huge, but… SPU. An area that’s out of our expertise in regard to difficulty playing there. The Falcons are a good team and that doesn’t change just because of the setting. WOU is a good team and their play doesn’t change with their setting either. Whether or not WOU is hard to play at is also unknown by us because SPU can always be counted on to struggle at WOU, regardless as to the record of either team. Much like WWU @ UAF, the Falcons could win a national title and yet would still almost be guaranteed to have a loss in Monmouth on their schedule.

With that:

WOU beat the #19 team and a team with a record of 4-10 in conference.
Wheeling Jesuit beat the #2 team in the country and a team that’s 6-10.

The thing is though: We’re starting to believe in the GNAC. We’re so beyond thrilled with UAA’s play, even with the losses to SPU and SMU, that we don’t think those two losses matter. Suki, Brian, and Corey are the real deal. Spencer Svejcar was fairly quiet this weekend but is also a baller. Christian Leckband is a heck of a 6th man. The NCAA Tournament is about winning when it counts. UAA went toe-to-toe with WWU and down the stretch they got it done. Is WWU a super crazy amazing team this year? No. But the Seawolves took on a (perennial power) team looking to upset them, went to 2OT, and got out of it, all on the road.

WOU was down by as much as 14 against SPU and came back and won. We’ve seen the Wolves go down and come back a lot, but doing it on the road against a somewhat legitimate team like SPU is impressive. Somewhat legitimate because they have no functional big men, their best point guard is in a massive shooting slump, their small forward shoots and misses until the kangaroos come home, and that leaves you with their one amazing wing in Mitch Penner and thus he becomes the guy every team focuses on. And yet he still miraculously had a really good game against WOU -and this is with him underachieving in regard to rebounding.

After all of that… We love WOU. We believe in them. We watched SPU almost make it to the Sweet 16 last year, with only four functioning players. We love Andy, Julian, Jordan, Alex, Devon, and Tanner; we truly consider their lineup to have six starters. And we don’t think that they should get the nod over Wheeling Jesuit. Not this week. But if/when they get the sweep in Alaska, we’ll be the first to say “Give ’em the #1.”

Oh and we expect SPU to stay in the rankings, despite the loss. There also is the potential they move up. While as of last week they had one of the higher loss totals of the ranked teams, SOS will save you. Their losses come via CU-Irvine, UAA, UAF, and WOU x2; all teams with winning records that are/would be guaranteed bids in the respective conference tournaments.


Our usual Wednesday discussions about the reality of the rankings will be up tomorrow at 10am.

The West vs. “The Rest.”

Why we felt the need to do this, we’re not sure. RPI is a brat and a half to calculate on the D2 level because everyone counts their non-D2 wins as wins (which they’re not -they’re simply non-losses) so to the SIDs and committee members reading this: You’re sort of welcome. Only sort of, because it really doesn’t matter.

WestVsTheRest

Basically we kicked the butts of the non-west region schools we played, but none of them are doing particularly fantastically except for MN Moorhead, so… Thanks to the Dragons for the OOR (out of region) legitimacy that splitting with you guys brought. RMAC/South Central Region -You’re our OOR buddy, we had fun attending your Regional last year, and we believe in you and your teams, so those games should increase in quality as conference play goes on.

Ultimately after going through all of the non-west region stuff, we circled back around to our original belief that none of it truly matters because of the small chance that any given team is going to match-up with one of these regions in the post-season, and the fact that if and when they do meet up -there’ll be another two thirds of the season between now and then.

Still -interesting and fun numbers. We have all of them, so if you’re curious about a particular context or something such, feel free to ask questions in the comments or on twitter.

Discussions: GNAC vs. the Rest

We have all the numbers (yes: all the numbers) but we’re not sure what you guys want, so… If you’re here, you’re probably just as basketball-geeky as we are, so we’re going to give you all the numbers. Merry Christmas.

Please keep in mind: We sorted through every schedule of every opponent a west region team plays and we ONLY counted D2 opponents in these records because that’s how it should be. The number of schools that count wins against non D2 opponents is too darn high.

Alaska Fairbanks

Home wins:
Hawaii Pacific (2-4)
Chaminade (3-3)
Dominguez Hills (2-4)
Northwest Nazarene (2-4)
Central Washington (2-2)

Road wins:
None

Neutral wins:
None.

They do have neutral site losses to Dixie State (4-4) and Dominican (5-3). Basically what this tells us is that UAF has ruled themselves out of at-large contention. Regional road wins are huge and there’s really no excuse for not picking some up if you want to be seriously considered to make the Tourney.

Current D2 Record: 5-2.
Current opponent record: 25-30
At-large bid potential: 0.

We like Fairbanks, love Bangaly and Travante and obviously Almir, and while we think they’re pretty secure in getting a bid to the conference tournament, they’re going to have to win it in order to get a berth in the Big Dance.

Alaska-Anchorage

Home wins:
Chaminade (3-3)
Hawaii Pacific (2-4)
Northwest Nazarene (2-4)
Central Washington (2-2)

Neutral wins:
Upper Iowa (5-8)

Road wins:
None.

Current D2 Record: 5-3
Current Opponent Record: 33-38
At-large bid potential: 0.

Suki drives us nuts, we can just say that. He’s not quite the cancer of Dom Williams, but no coach would green light someone to regularly go 10-21 if they had any better options at all. We consider the Seawolves to be secure in their berth to the conference tournament, but they definitely need the auto-bid in order to become one of sixty-four.

Simon Fraser

Home wins:
None

Neutral wins:
None

Road wins:
None

Honestly the opponent record doesn’t even matter because SFU’s not going anywhere without the auto-bid and the odds of them even making the conference tournament are quickly approaching zero.

Western Washington

Home wins:
Saint Martin’s
Simon Fraser

Neutral wins:
Colorado Springs (3-5)
Upper Iowa (5-8)

Road wins:
None

Current D2 record: 4-4
Opponent Record: 34-31
At-large potential: 0

We see their odds of making the conference tournament to be almost 100%. They got Evan Scholten back, he’s looked really good, the Vikings have the history. Do we see them getting the auto-bid? Too soon to say. But they will need it in order to go dancing.


We want to group SPU and WOU together, so the Falcons are being skipped right here, but you can find them farther down.


Saint Martin’s

Home wins:
Hawaii Hilo (0-6)

Neutral wins:
Monterey Bay (3-6)

Road wins:
Simon Fraser

Current D2 record: 3-3
Opponent Record: 17-31
At-large potential: 0

Making the conference tournament? 50/50. We see their odds of making the dance as being incredibly small, but the Saints will keep improving and we’ll see where we stand after the first half of the conference round robin.

MSU-Billings

Home wins:
None

Neutral wins:
None

Road wins:
Black Hills State (2-4)
U of Mary (9-2)
CU-Portland (0-6)

Current D2 record: 3-6
Opponent Record: 45-31
At-large potential: 0

They have zero at-large potential, but they did challenge themselves thoroughly, there’s no denying that, it’s a great schedule, and had they come out on top they’d have every reason to think they were heading to the Dance provided they kept winning. As it is, they’re going to fight for a bid to the conference tournament and then try and use the experience they build in non-con to get that auto-bid and make it happen.

Central Washington

Home wins:
None

Neutral wins:
Hawaii-Hilo (0-6)
BYU-Hawaii (5-3)

Road wins:
None

Current D2 record: 2-2
Opponent record: 15-14
At-large potential: 0

On the one hand, we really want to judge this CWU team, but then on the other hand we feel like we don’t have enough yet to make a pronouncement, and yet that in itself lends it to us making a pronouncement. The Wildcats returned almost everything and yet they scheduled themselves pathetically. They should be hoping they make the conference tournament, it’s far from a guarantee, and they missed out on getting two big road wins in Alaska -in both cases by a lot. Those games weren’t close. So we’ll see.

Northwest Nazarene

Home wins:
CSULA (2-7)
Dominican (6-4)

Neutral wins:
None

Road wins:
None

Current D2 record: 2-4
Opponent record: 25-26
At-large potential: 0

There’s really not much to be said. The Crusaders actually scheduled themselves pretty well but ultimately couldn’t do anything with it and then came really close to getting a few wins in Alaska but couldn’t do it. Hopefully they’ve seasoned themselves and with conference play they’ll turn around and at least make the conference tourney? Maybe. Not out of the realm of possibility.

CU-Portland

Home wins:
None

Neutral wins:
None

Road wins:
None

The Cavaliers are cold porridge at this point. If they make the conference tourney it’ll be a miracle. They had a nice mix with MSUB and WOU being their first two conference opponents, but couldn’t get it done. They also had a good chance to learn from their first loss against CU-Irvine, but couldn’t do anything with it -in fact CU-Irvine did a lot with it, beating the Cavs by considerably more. It’s gonna be a rough year, but know that we’re in your corner Baby Bro.


Alright, now let’s talk about the realistic at-larges. And yes -they both are, which is GREAT news for everyone else.

Seattle Pacific

Home wins:
BYU-Hawaii (5-3)
Hawaii-Hilo (0-6)
Azusa Pacific (7-3)

Neutral wins:
East Bay (2-5)

Road wins:
Dixie State (4-5)
Chico State (7-2)
SFU (0-7)
Azusa Pacific (7-3)

Current D2 record: 8-1
Opponent record: 36-35
At-large potential: high

We’re obsessed with the Falcons schedule, we’ll just say that straight up. We know it didn’t end up as quality as they were hoping it would, but they genuinely attempted to schedule really well and regardless as to how it worked out: they won. They have one loss to a 7-1 CU-Irvine team, they have road wins, they have a neutral win, they have home wins.

Their road win against WWU isn’t as quality as it might be but that game always has a lot of emotion and they came in and did what they needed to do, and it seems like it was good mental prep. Same with Azusa Pacific -there was potentially a lot of emotion riding on that game because Azusa, while a very different team this year, did make the Elite Eight last year. They got it done and did so convincingly. And that’s what we think regarding the tourney: It’s always a matter of winning, but this non-conference has indoctrinated this latest group of Falcons in what it takes to win and theoretically they’ll continue to make the statement that they know how throughout conference play.

Western Oregon

Home wins:
Monterey Bay (3-6)
MSUB (3-6)
CU-PDX (0-6)

Neutral wins:
Point Loma (5-5)
Fresno Pacific (5-3)
ND de Namur (0-9)

Road wins:
Holy Names (2-7)
UCSD (9-1)

Current D2 record: 9-0
Opponent record: 27-45
At-large potential: high

We love this Western Oregon team because they’re coming in with a new-to-them coach and getting it done. New to them, because he’s new to the current crop of guys, but he is a Western Oregon guy -so he gets it. This schedule isn’t as ideal as it might be, but they got it done and decimated it as they should have and that UCSD road win means the world. That in itself is huge, especially because we really, really, really like that UCSD team -they’re our current CCAA obsession, if you follow us on twitter- and so we think that win is going to get more and more quality as the year progresses, which is huge huge HUGE.

We’re waiting for Julian Nichols, Jordan Wiley, and Devon Alexander to really click into gear because it still feels like they haven’t, but luckily… They have the big bad beast that is Andy to make them all look better. Aside from Alex Roth, we feel like we haven’t seen much out of the new guys, but SPU demonstrated last year that you only need four + a coach or two, in order to do pretty well, and we love Julian and Devon in particular so we think they’re going to ultimately be just fine.


From a realistic standpoint: If you’re not a WOU or SPU person, you should be hoping like heck that they win against everyone that isn’t you, because now what your team needs to focus on is simply making the conference tournament. We’ll get more into the wider west region picture (and the potential Regional host) tomorrow, but the quick version is that it’s a wash outside of a few schools. There will be a potential for the GNAC to be a three-bid league, but the only way that happens is if neither SPU nor WOU claims the auto-bid from the GNAC tournament.

We used to be in the camp that “Oh, we’d rather have more teams go, so it’s fine if our team doesn’t win the conference tournament,” but that was a very different time. While we see things getting back to where there were of a couple of teams not needing that auto-bid, after 2014 (one bid year) it just seems like too much of a risk. 2014 saw the Pac-West and CCAA both qualify an auto-bid only entrant, which semi-burst WWU’s bubble. Semi, because if you want to go dancing: WIN. That’s it. WIN.

The good news is: We might get the chance to return the bubble bursting favor this year. But the only way that happens is if WOU and SPU both win, win, win, so grit your teeth and become part of the Wolfpack/Falcon Faithful, and then come conference tournament time you can go back to hating the Falcons like normal. We get the feeling that there’s not nearly so much resentment toward the Wolves, and we’d be lying if we said we didn’t get it because… We hated attending SPU and hated being a part of their athletic department in particular. Good teachers, horrible students, toxic athletic department. Some of our most vivid memories of undergrad include waking up to find that we were throwing ourselves against the wall of our dorm room in hopes of knocking ourselves out cold so we would then have a legitimate excuse to not have to deal with our day.

So yes: We get the hate, we feel it much deeper than likely almost anyone reading this, but basketball over everything and right now you need to root like heck for SPU. The rest of the year you can hate them with our wholehearted approval.

Tomorrow: Discussing the West Region as a whole, potential host sites, etc.

D2 Tip-Off Day Three

Both teams lost and yet it wasn’t a bad day for the GNAC overall because they were some of the first games these teams played, AND our suspicion is that the losses were mostly quality.

UC Colorado Springs 79, Alaska Anchorage 70

Christian Leckbend got to start! Exciting stuff. While the result is less than desirable, this game wasn’t horrible. Everyone shot terribly, which would allude to good defense being played and the Seawolves getting tested, which is totally fine. They shot 65% from the line; neither good nor bad. It was a good test. The Seawolves got down early and then couldn’t overcome it, but not a bad game by any stretch and we look forward to seeing their improvements from it.

Player highlights: Christian Leckband had 15 points and six boards; SUKI WIGGS (apparently reads this blog) because he had 21 points, 13 rebounds, 7 assists (hot dang), and five fouls -love, love, love it; Corey Hammell had five boards, three assists, and five points -all negated by four turnovers. Off the bench: Spencer Svejcar had 13 points, two rebounds, two assists, and two steals off the bench.

Not sure where we fall on the Spencer vs. Christian starting question. We like both. We’re excited to see Suki play off of Brian McGill because if this is how Suki is now, with a master distributor he’s going to be even more insane. Not worried about the turnovers because with Brian back it should be fine. Diante Mitchell should ultimately be the guard off the bench going forward, but with him the Seawolves are demonstrably going at least seven if not eight deep, therefore life is good. Corey had a bit of a rough game, but it’s so early that it’s neither here nor there.

Western Washington 71, MN-Moorhead 74

So… MN-Moorhead went to the Elite Eight last year and WWU almost beat them meanwhile shooting an atrocious 35% from the line. There is NO excuse for that. None. Make those free throws, win that game. The other issue is that they shot poorly; again, could be attributed to good defense being played, but… Wouldn’t have mattered if they’d made their free throws. Still, great chance to see the Vikings respond and almost pull it out. Relatively okay with this result; it’s never good to pick up a loss, but if you have to this opponent isn’t terrible to have it occur against. Incredibly, incredibly displeased with the FTs and some of the shot selection, but again: early season.

Player highlights: Ricardo Maxwell had 11 points; Kyle Impero had 14 points, seven boards, four assists, and a steal; COLBY MITCHELL had 14 points, 10 boards, and four fouls, which would have been perfect had he not gone 0-4 on his free throws; Jeff Parker had six boards and 16 points on abysmal shooting; Mac Johnson had nine boards and six points on similarly abysmal shooting -woof. Off the bench: Brett Kingma had 10 points.


Overall not a bad weekend, in fact we’d say it was pretty good. There’s not really anything D2 for a couple of weeks now, and so we probably will go ahead and stick up some POW noms and then a POW just because it’ll be a while before it’s relevant.

There will be a discussions post on Wednesday and then probably some other stuff? For the most part because we did a more intensive October than expected, these first two weeks are going to be pretty chill. November 13th is when things’ll really get crazy.

Keep in mind we won’t do team previews until the December dead period, but other than that:

Leave a comment or Tweet at us if there’s something you’re curious about!

D2 Tip-off Day Two

Exactly what was expected happened. Alaska Anchorage got blown out by CBU, WWU blew out Upper Iowa; all the tale of an All Hallows’ Afternoon.

Alaska Anchorage 68, Cal Baptist 79,

Entirely as projected. Suki needs to start taking better shots. We’ll tell you guys now: Be careful about poking the blogger. You tell us how amazing your team and transfers are, we’re gonna give you the needle even when you’re performing exactly as we projected (good but not great) simply because you told us you were all that. Better stick with the humility and let us gush like we got to with NNU last year.

Alright, player highlights: To be fair, Suki did improve with having 34 points, 7 rebounds, two assists, and four steals -still, that was on 10-22 shooting and with six turnovers, which is atrocious; Spencer Svejcar had six points and five fouls, which we consider productive; SJUR BERG had seven points and seven boards; Corey Hammell had some less than stellar shooting to get to 12 points, but made up for it by picking up 11 boards. Bench didn’t do much, but Christian Leckbend had four points and four boards, which is sort of solid.

Western Washington 90, Upper Iowa 75

Exactly, 100% what we were expecting and yet still super proud of the Vikings because especially early season -you need to get those expected victories in a strut-like manner, which is what happened.

Player highlights: Ricardo Maxwell had six rebounds, two assists, two steals, and 16 points; KYLE IMPERO had NINE rebounds, three assists, two steals, and 29 points on prototypical shooting; Colby Mitchell had five points, three rebounds, one steal, one block, and five fouls; Jeff Parker had seven boards, three assists, four fouls, and 17 points; Mac Johnson had five boards and 10 points but none of that matters because he had a whopping six turnovers -yeesh, get it together Mac, you’re better than that. Off the bench: Brett Kingma had eight points.


Pretty much it. Nothing too exciting except the excitement that comes from doing exactly what needs to be done. Today is day three of the D2 Tip-off with Alaska Anchorage facing Colorado Springs and Western Washington facing Minnesota State Moorhead.

We’ll go over the stuff per usual tomorrow morning and contemplating acknowledging a pseudo-player of the week because all of this was against D2. We’ll see.

D2 Tip-Off Day One

Obviously we really don’t know a heck of a lot about what these results mean, but… Some of these players had seriously good games, looking at you Cory Hammell and Ricardo Maxwell.

Alaska Anchorage 84, Upper Iowa 81

Upper Iowa is in the Northern Sun conference and finished with a conference record of 12-10 last year and played one game in the conference tournament. Sounds like a good match-up for the Seawolves and it turns out that it was -the Seawolves won in a close one and as projected -had transfers step-up. The good news is -the transfers stepped up and they got the win; the bad news is, the overall production was relatively atrocious. Anchorage wants to be treated same as the contenders? With numbers like this with the Vikings or Falcons, we’d be pissed despite the win, particularly at Suki. Who does he think he is? Dom Williams? Jaamon Echols? Yikes.

Player highlights: Suki Wiggs had 20 points; Diante Mitchell had 12; Spencer Svejar had 14; SJUR BERG had 11 rebounds; Cory Hammell had a double-double with 10 boards and 18 points on not bad shooting. Off the bench, Christian Leckbend added in six boards; Tayler Thompson added 7 boards. Pretty much it. Ridiculously proud of Sjur and Corey!!!!!! Alright -Suki, Diante, and Spencer were horrible, but the rest of you guys were great. We is proud of you!

Western Washington 95, UC Colorado Springs 84

UC Colorado Springs was actually witnessed in person by us last year in the second round of the NCAA Tournament where they got blown out by Tarleton State – a team that we’d watched WWU play earlier in the year- so overall not a surprising result but a very good one for the Vikings. This is a good win, nice way to start the season, even if Colorado Springs didn’t really return anything (we’re not sure and too lazy to find out).

Player highlights: RICARDO MAXWELL HAD 27 POINTS!!!!! Little off on his field goals, but easily forgivable because is was seriously only a tiny bit off and he went 12-13 on free throws along with picking up SEVEN assists; Kyle Impero had an awesome 9 rebounds, five assists, three steals, FIVE FOULS, and fourteen points; Jeff Parker had 7 boards and 23 points while making ALL of his free throws; Mac Johnson had a FULL HOUSE with six boards, three assists, two steals, a block, three fouls, and nine points, although his free throws need help. Off the bench: Brett Kingma had 15 points.


Overall, a great first day of basketball for the GNAC. Can’t want to see the stats from today. Congrats to both the Vikings and Seawolves on their respective victories.

Friday’s Games

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.