Better late than never!
Suki Wiggs -Alaska-Anchorage; Sr.
Taylor Stafford -Western Washington; Sr.
Maurice Jones -Northwest Nazarne; Jr.
Christopher Edward -CU-Portland; Jr.
Tanner Omlid -Western Oregon; Jr.
Spencer Svejcar -Alaska-Anchorage; Sr.
Daulton Hommes -Western Washington; RS Fr.
Tony Miller -Seattle Pacific; Fr.
Preston Beverly -MSU-Billings; So.
Drew Martin -CU-Portland; Sr.
Brandon Davis, Corey Hammell, Diante Mitchell, Cole Preston, Deandre Dickson, Gavin Long, Fuquan Niles, Dom Hunter, and Bouna N’Diaye.
This was actually a really fun year for player-of-the-year with how much parity there was and how well they compared to each other in regard to production and team impact. It’s fun having so many underclassmen on these teams because we to keep most of them.
We’re about four weeks out and we absolutely cannot wait.
Player-of-Last-Year will be up in an hour.
This time for February 23-25.
UAF: Brandon Davis
SFU: Othniel Spence
WWU: Deandre Dickson
SPU: Tony Miller
SMU: Rhett Baerlocher
CWU: N/A —> Diante Mitchell, Alaska-Anchorage.
NNU: Maurice Jones
CU-PDX: Jarrett Gray
There were a lot of above average performances this week and only one spot donated, so really good final week of the regular season. Winner’ll be up in an hour.
UAA 68 @ UAF 61
Exciting game. It was looking dicey for a long time and then we believe Spencer Svejcar hit a three and then the Seawolves were able to walk it up and mostly keep it out of reach.
Seawolf highlights: Suki had eight boards; Diante Mitchell had 21 points; Spencer Svejcar made a statement, getting a double-double with 24 points and 10 boards; Corey Hammell went 4-4 from the line and grabbed 11 rebounds; and Connor Devine grabbed five boards. No real bench play.
Nook highlights: Nahjee had 18 points; Bangaly had five boards and a full house; LaDonavan had six boards; and Brandon Davis played 40 minutes and finished with a full house among 19 points and three steals. Also no real bench play.
NNU 68 @ SPU 83
Falcons showing their youth, but getting it done much better. Even last week, they weren’t able to close games like this and tonight they did. The Crusaders played really hard and did their best to exploit, but ultimately couldn’t quite get it done.
Crusader highlights: Bouna went 9-11 from the line; Kaileb Rodriguez had 14 points; Maurice Jones had a double-double including 14 boards; and off the bench Nikola Prvulj had five points.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had 14 points and seven boards; Tony Miller had 24 points; Joe Rasmussen had 14 points and six boards; and Olivier-Paul Betu had six assists. Off the bench Nathan Streufert had seven boards along with a full house; and Hunter Eisenhower had nine points.
This is potentially a big statement for the Falcons -it says that they’re finding themselves, which on a team as young as they are is big. This Falcons team had no concept of how to win earlier this year and slowly but surely they’re learning. As for NNU, no big deal. The conference is a mess. The Crusaders are still a super great and talented team.
CU-PDX 74 @ SFU 73
SFU was — that close to winning and then they committed a stupid foul and they didn’t. The Cavs got out by the skin of their teeth, but it is what it is and was what it was. Congrats Cavs, you done got lucky.
Cav highlights: Drew Martin had 13 points; Christopher Edward had nine points, 10 boards, and four steals among other stats meriting a full house, Jarrett Gray had 10 points; and Harris Taylor had 19 points. Off the bench Latrell Wilson had 18 points.
Clan highlights: Kedar Wright had 21 points and five boards; Iziah had 15 point,s, five boards, and four steals; Michael Provenzano had 21 points; and off the bench Tyrell Lewin had six boards.
WOU 63 @ WWU 73
This game was a mess. Both teams are good, but it was seriously an ugly game of basketball that the players knew was ugly, thus they made it even uglier by getting all chippy. Because the game was so ugly, the chippyness wasn’t entertaining -it was just desperate. Congrats to the Viks on ultimately getting it done.
Wolf highlights: Tanner Omlid had 19 points; Ali had 20 points and five boards; JJ Chirnside had five boards; and off the bench Bryan Berg had five points; while Isaiah Edwards had five boards.
Viking highlights: Taylor Stafford had 26 points as well as four boards, four assists, and four steals; Logan Schilder had seven boards; and Daulton Hommes had seven boards. Off the bench Deandre Dickson had an awesome eight boards and 18 points; and Trevor Jasinsky had five boards.
Yeesh. We’re glad this game is over. Interesting for the Wolves though -their game was ugly against the Falcons too and they got away with it; can’t do that against WWU.
MSUB 74 @ UAF 83
Close the whole game. Agonizing. The parity continues. The Nooks played really well, finally. Great game from them, super proud!
Yellowjacket highlights: Preston Beverly had nine boards and finished with a full house; Marc Matthews had 19 points and six boards; and Kamal Tall had eight boards. Off the bench Kendall Denham had 11 points; and Cade Alcorn had five boards.
Nook highlights: Nahjee had five boards and six assists; Bangaly had 10 points; LaDonavan had 13 points; Zach Pederson made a statement with a double double of 11 boards and 11 points; and Brandon Davis played another 40 minute game, finishing with 22 points. Off the bench Michael Kluting had nine points.
Again, congrats to the Nooks on a great performance. Good luck to the Yellowjackets against the Seawolves.
CWU 79 @ SMU 80
This game was insane. Naim Ladd didn’t play, Fuquan shut down Fred, and the Wildcats still almost pulled it off. We admittedly fell asleep watching it, but… That was because of the insanity that’s been going on in our state this week. It ultimately had a 9:15 start time because both Cascade passes are closed, thus CWU had to go down around and up. Yup -what would have/should have been a two hour bus ride turned into six. For those that don’t live here -pretty much all of western Washington shutdown on Monday due to snow and then Tuesday due to ice. The entire week has been weird. It’s now 55 degrees outside. Go figure.
Wildcat highlights: Jawan Stepney had 17 points; Fuquan turned in a classic center performance with a double double of 15 boards and 14 rebounds while missing three shots from the line; and off the bench Cameron Burton had six boards and eight points; while Sage Woodruff continues to make a mark with 14 points.
Saint highlights: Cole Preston rocked it yet again, playing 40 minutes and scoring 15 points and dishing out 10 assists for the double-double; Rhett Baerlocher had 20 points and eight boards; and off the bench Trey Ingram added 14 points; and Brandon Kenilvort a double-double with 17 points and eight rebounds.
Big congrats to the Saints, huge win. CWU, we still believe. Not in your bubble, your bubble has now official burst, but we still know you’re a great team and are proud of you all the same =)
What a night. It was incredible. Everyone played really hard (minus the Westerns) and it was a night to be proud of -even the Westerns.
We’re actually stunned, double checked the numbers, it was insanely close, we considered splitting the award, but ultimately there was no question:
This is 100% a true win by Preston Beverly and these are easily in the top 10 of best numbers we’ve seen in the three years we’ve been writing the blog by anyone, much less an underclassmen.
What did Preston do this week?
Led his team against a surging Northwest Nazarene team by scoring 28 points, grabbing 11 boards, and approaching the Kristaps Porzingis triple double of SEVEN BLOCKS. As a sophomore! Those are some gooood instincts, positioning, and is a great show of poise for anyone -much less an underclassmen. He ended up with four fouls and we feel 50/50 about it. On the one hand he was likely being saved for over time, on the other hand: you can’t win in over time if you don’t make it to over time, so we tend to fall on the side that he needed more than those 35 minutes. The Yellowjackets didn’t get the win, but it apparently made Preston pretty angry because come the game at CWU, he wasn’t giving up ANYTHING.
The CWU game… At Nicholson… Not quite as good of a performance (although still incredible) and this time he had help. Big help. Shout out to Kamal Tall. Preston ultimately finished with 32 points, 11 boards, SIX ASSISTS with ZERO TURNOVERS, and just two fouls, while being 4-4 from the line, shooting well from the field, and going 4-6 from three, while being in the game for just 32 minutes. The Yellowjackets won by 27 on the back of his consummate ballin’ performance.
We’re so ridiculously proud of him and elated for him and beyond thrilled they picked up the ‘W’ on top of it, especially in such a hostile environment.
Congrats Preston and good luck against the Alaska schools!!
Hoooooooooo boy. This was an amazing week. So many ridiculously productive games by so many awesome players.
UAF: Brandon Davis, starting to take on the role of “glass monster.” Never a bad thing. Ever.
UAA: Suki………… Will go down under blog lore. Shot surprisingly well from the field this week, way to go Suk!
SFU: N/A —> Donated to Daulton Hommes of WWU, who continues to use his body well in space.
WWU: Taylor Stafford -usually PG/SG hybrids give you the worst of both worlds, but Taylor does a great job with it week in and week out.
SPU: Tony -like Daulton, another fantastic frosh that uses his body well in space; had some turnover issues, but more than made up for it with his tenacity.
SMU: N/A —> Maurice Jones of NNU, he’s sooo good, the question now is will he actually be willing to stay in Nampa for another year.
MSUB: Preston Beverly -have you paid proper respect today, to the sophomore that has no idea what the word ‘slump’ means?
CWU: N/A —> Gavin Long of SPU; smart player, does what’s needed and does so without needed fanfare.
NNU: Bouna!! He’s developed so well. Ridiculously proud of his strategic play and non-stop hustle.
CU-PDX: Drew Martin -continues to board well and support his teammates well and otherwise be the consummate basketball player.
WOU: Tanner Omlid. Triple Double. ‘Nuff said.
Winner’ll be up soon.
AKA the Sophomore Superstar.
Preston had a couple of lights out games against the Alaska schools, which is impressive in part because the Alaska schools are really good, but also in part because they were able to push what’s usually a very slow and methodical MSUB team into a frenetic pace and the Yellowjackets responded just fine, in large part thanks to Preston’s play.
Against Alaska-Anchorage he shot 50% from the field, was 6/7 from the line, and had six rebounds, six assists, and four fouls. He had three turnovers, but the ball was constantly in his hands; the team had a low turnover total overall, thus when entrusted to be the man, he stepped up. It’s so much fun for us to watch because we hate the trend of the slumping sophomore… Preston is definitely not that.
When the Jackets took on the Nooks four days later, Preston again carried his team to a victory, this time with 28 points, 10 boards, three assists, two steals, four blocks, and ZERO turnovers. He again shot right around 50% from the field, although was less than stellar from the line, going 6/10.
Congrats Preston on a couple of great performances and good luck this week against Spartin!
Ready to eat up these performances? Little elaboration, but most require little explanation.
UAA: Spencer Svejcar -he’s been on our radar since last year, good to see him carry the load for a week.
SFU: N/A —> Donated to Joe Rasmussen, of SPU.
WWU: Daulton Hommes.
SPU: Tony Miller.
SMU: Cole Preston.
MSUB: Preston Beverly -sophomore slump say WHAT?!
NNU: Maurice. Is MoJo a thing? Do students at NNU even know what either MoJo is? The other MoJo is a magazine that’s basically the liberal equivalent of Fox News. We’re guessing Maurice Jones is similarly unheard of because while we’ve only been to one basketball game at NNU, we suspect that’s still more than most NNU students.*
CU-PDX: N/A —> Fred Jorg! His shooting from the field was an abomination, but he made his free throws; go figure.
Nice hodgepodge of nominees: Some great underclassmen, some senior centers that are finally deciding to function, the tried and true in Tanner and Bangaly, and of course… the amazing transfers in Dom and Maurice, although Dom is an in-conference transfer and because this is a conference blog that feels like gray area -he’s always been ours =).
Announcement’ll be up in a bit.
Happy New Year Blog Fam!!
The last day of 2016 was an interesting day of basketball, very fun, and shockingly we were relatively correct. We told you: this season is nuts, these games are ridiculous; take your victories where you can get them.
NNU 64 @ WOU 59
Talk about a heck of a come back. At the end of the first NNU was down 20. Dead on the court. But whatever their halftime consisted of it worked, and they came back to beat the Wolves. We’re guessing forcing turnovers had a considerable amount to do with it -WOU had 14, which is ridiculously uncharacteristic. Constant vigilance.
Crusader highlights: Bouna N’Diaye played a full forty minutes, had a full house, including eight boards and 30 points; Maurice Jones also played 40 full minutes, and had a full house with 16 points and 10 boards among other stats. The rest of the team played as a team, acknowledged that it was better with the ball in their hands, no one tried to play hero ball, and they got the team win. Congrats to the teamwork of all the Crusaders.
Wolf highlights: Tanner Omlid had a double double with 23 points and 11 boards; Buster Souza had eight boards. Off the bench Akil Reese had a full house; and Demetrius Trammell had 11 points.
Huge game for NNU, not super concerning for WOU, although they’re rapidly approaching needing the auto bid. Not sure what was with the collapse, but it is what it is. This season it’s hard to be freaked out by any one game because the majority are a coin flip.
MSUB 100 @ WWU 93
Can we get a what? what? Honestly the WWU numbers weren’t bad in the slightest, Billings just beat them. No one played any defense, and these were two very evenly matched teams. Not super surprising because WWU is essentially a brand new team, whereas the core of MSUB has been together for three years. That’s the type of recipe that leads to an upset and it happened.
Yellowjacket highlights: Preston Beverly had a full house including six boards and 15 points; Marc Matthews also had a full house with eight boards, five assists, and 28 points; and Jace Anderson had 18 points. Off the bench Kendall Denham had 10 points; Zach Lessinger had eight points; and Cinco Duro had six points.
Viking highlights: Taylor Stafford had four boards, four steals, and 27 points; Logan Schilder had seven boards; Daulton Hommes had a full house including a double double with 20 points and 10 boards; and Jeffrey Parker had 12 points and five boards. Off the bench Deandre Dickson continues to impress with 18 points and six boards; and Trevor Janisky had five boards.
Very little defense by either team. Good free throw shooting by both teams.
CWU 80 @ CU-PDX 73
The Cavaliers had a lead and then kept it close for the most part but just couldn’t do it. Still a good game for them, especially with Davis Nuaimi being so off. Next time?
Wildcat highlights: Naim Ladd had five assists; Dom Hunter had a double double with 18 points and 10 boards; Jawan Stepney had 12 points and five assists; Sage Woodruff started and had 14 points and nine boards; Fuquan Niles had 11 points and seven boards; and off the bench Marc Rodgers had seven points.
Cavalier highlights: Drew Martin had six boards; Christopher Edward had 14 points and 10 boards; Jarrett Gray had nine points and five boards. Off the bench Bryan Michaels had six boards; and Tre’ Vance had 12 points and seven boards.
Not the shiniest game, but definitely fun to watch, great effort across both teams, acceptable shooting numbers in regard to not being devoid of defense and yet taking smart shots for the most part. We continue to be impressed by the play of Naim Ladd -partly because he’s small, but largely just because he’s scrappy as all heck.
SPU 79 @ UAF 77
For a while there it looked like we were going to be really wrong, then it looked like we would be really wrong in the opposite direction, and then we mostly ended up right. Not that any of it matters, but it is funny. We feel so clueless than any bone the universe throws us, we’ll take.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had a double double with 11 boards and 22 points; Tony Miller also had a double-double with 32 points and 10 boards; and off the bench Sharif Khan had nine points and six boards.
Nook highlights: Nahjee Matlock had five boards, four assists, and three steals; Bangaly had 11 points; Zach Pederson had 17 points; and Brandon Davis had 12 points. Off the bench Michael Kluting had five boards.
Solid numbers on both sides, for the most part. The Nooks violated the Falcons in terms of shooting within the paint, but it is what it is. SPU just doesn’t have size to match with anyone because they refuse to play the two guys that have size and aren’t terrified of physical play against opponents.
SMU 49 @ UAA 55
Saints and anyone else that wants any success against UAA: DO NOT SEND SUKI WIGGS TO THE LINE. HE WILL MAKE ALMOST EVERY SINGLE ONE. DO NOT DO IT. P.S. Good job Suki!
Saint highlights: Trey Ingram had 10 points; Cole Preston had 16 points; and Jordan Kitchen had six points while going 3/4. Maybe the most alarming thing was the number of turnovers, but honestly it wasn’t a horrible game; it was just hard. Good shots, okay shooting percentages, just going against a very good team with a great home court advantage.
Seawolf highlights: Suki Wiggs had five boards and was 12/14 from the line; Diante Mitchell had seven boards, four assists, and 13 points; and Corey Hammell had seven boards.
Impressive feat by the Saints. They need to pull games like this out from now on. They managed to shut down Corey Hammell AND Connor Devine, AND Spencer Svejcar, which is seriously impressive. The bad games of those guys are the good games of just about anyone else, so seriously awesome.
Great day of basketball. Numbers were good all the way around. Parity fully on display. It’s been forever since we’ve done player of the week, but that’ll be up tomorrow -very exciting stuff.
Yup. We’re posting this tonight because it’s 9pm pacific and why not?
Western Oregon 71 @ MSU-Billings 79
Can we pretend that we predicted that? We wouldn’t consider eight points to be a blow-out, especially not in a game that essentially reached eighty. We said that this result was possible. MSUB is a very experienced team, WOU is talented but still inexperienced. It’s easier to win at home than on the road. It’s hard to win at MSUB in general. All of that makes a recipe for MSUB to “upset” the Wolves, but… All the rest of y’all should hold your horses, because what’s that? WOU gained some experience? WOU experienced a road GNAC loss. WOU will theoretically be evolving. Now that the road loss is under their belt, they should be able to take and make quite a bit out of it so it happens less in the coming games.
Sounds like a plan. MSUB… Doesn’t need to learn anything from the win. MSUB is actually arguably the second most experienced team in the conference. Why they’re losing to Frontier schools is anyone’s guess. What happened to Kendall Denham, who knows?
Wolf highlights: Tanner Omlid had a full house with five rebounds, six assists, and five steals among other stats; Yanick Kulich had a good night with 16 points; Ali Faruq-Bey had 19 points; and Malik Leaks was kept quiet, but that’s a credit to the Yellowjackets -he was finally placed in the starting line-up (go Malik!) and we credit him with being hard to guard, so learning experience for him. Off the bench Demetrius Trammell had seven points.
Yellowjacket highlights: Preston Beverly had 13 points and eight boards; Marc Matthews had 20 points; and off the bench Kendall Denham had nine points; while Zach Lessinger had nine boards. Not too many Yellowjacket highlights because overall they had an incredibly balanced performance and moved the basketball a lot, if not distributed particularly well. Their A/TO suggests they didn’t, but the win and array of players with points says otherwise.
There’s a reason we don’t write these posts at night and it’s because we tend to write in the style of Aziz Ansari doing a Joe Biden impression -goofily apathetically enthusiastic.
POW noms and announcement in the AM.
Round robin chart up “soon.”
On the agenda for today: MSUB @ Chadron State, NNU/Sleeper Teams and their bullies, SFU’s schedule, and our posting schedule issues.
MSU-Billings 89 @ Chadron State 69
Just how bad is Chadron State? Answer -them playing in the RMAC may inadvertently cause some of the other RMAC teams to violate the Geneva Convention. It has been said that Green circle runs at The Summit At Snoqualmie are the Bunny Hill at Stevens Pass. Lower-mid teams in the GNAC are JV teams in the RMAC. The RMAC is typically a very, very good conference. So that could actually mean that MSUB just beat a good team by a lot. We’ll have to wait and see. In the meantime:
Yellowjacket highlights: Preston Beverly had 13 points; Marc Matthews had 12 points and five boards; Kamal Tall had 11 points and six boards; Kendall Denham had 11 points off the bench; and Christian Evans had an insane double double of 23 points and 11 boards off the bench.
Good showing by the Jackets. The rest of you can thank MSUB -they’re a huge part of the reason we don’t write anything about non-D2 games; we love them, but they have a habit of losing to a whole smattering of NAIA teams from the Frontier conference, which is in fact wayyy weaker than the Cascade Conference. GNAC teams often play Cascade teams, but we consider those loses/close wins to be relatively okay because the Cascade Conf. is legit. As we’ve noted before: they often send four teams to a 16 at-large, 32 team overall tournament.
When sleeper teams wake-up.
We’re using NNU as the example because it’s the most recent and they had a schedule quirk that makes it even better:
During the year that NNU got really good once they got Alex Birketoft into their line-up, they played SPU three times. They played them once in December before they had him, and twice in a row in March; once as the regular season cap, and the other in the conference tournament. Okay, NNU played a game in between that, but for SPU it was twice in a row.
The first time SPU blew them out by 30. Okay, whatever, they didn’t have Alex, they were yet to get insane. The second time, SPU got to hear about NNU being soooo good and upsetting WOU on the road (something SPU couldn’t do) and so on and so forth, wow, NNU is great. While normally SPU might keep things humane or overlook the Crusaders because they like them (Christian schools, no real recruiting battles, etc.) this time it was like “NNU thinks they’re so good and are going to come in here and upset us, so let’s kill them.” And they did. And then they did it again out in Billings six days later.
We never know what to think of sleeper teams. We always hope that there is one because they’re so fun and dynamic. Two full years later we’re still mad that we didn’t get to see NNU in person that year. We were originally going on the SPU trip, but ended up going to MSUB at CWU instead (hella good game, btw) and so it wouldn’t have mattered anyway, but… Alex, Erik, Kevin. The dream. When Bouna could still be our obsession as the 6th man. And Kendall Denham was a breaking out starting freshman rather than a bench junior. We miss Kendall in the starting line-up, cm bck bby.
We look forward to hopefully another sleeper team this year, although we have no inclination as to who it’ll be because we don’t consider SMU a sleeper. Other people do, we don’t.
On SFU playing tournaments with SPU:
SPU: If you set up these games with us, we’ll bring SFU -guaranteed win against a D2 opponent, plus either a good win or a quality loss against us.
California schools: Deal!
SFU: Ummmmm Falcons, I thought you said there’d be an overlook factor???? Falcons??? FALCONS??? DON’T MAKE US GET OUR BOWS AND ARROWS. WE BEAT YOU TWO YEARS AGO YOU STUPID RETRIEVER BIRDS.
NNU your loss to College of I is completely irrelevant because they in fact are in the Cascade Conference, which is the class of NAIA D2.
We’re from the Cal-Pac, so we’re not even biased when we say that -Cascade is just straight up baller.
Why has the posting schedule been all messed up this year?
A number of reasons:
a. At the beginning of the year 10/11 teams were complete unknowns.
b. Now all 11 teams are completely unknown. SFU has had some good moments, UAA has had some bad moments, but none of that means anything because every conference seems to be in flux.
c. 35+ teams in the West Region are in flux. It makes things more complicated, it makes the extrapolation of data that much more meaningless, and while we’ll speculate on stuff all day long, how much of it any given person needs to read in a blog post is a different matter.
d. We’re finally working 40 (read: 50) hours a week at a somewhat big-person job and it’s exciting and we love it, but we’re yet to catch a rhythm yet and with how much variability there’s been in what’s going on with any conference team, there’s simply less blogging to be done this year so far. Things’ll mellow out and ramp up as we get into conference play.
Alright. Game previews’ll be up Friday morning, go dawgs, have a happy and safe Thanksgiving.