MSUB 87 @ SPU 98
That score looks normal enough (if not rather lacking in defense) and while the game averaged out to normal, in reality it was anything but. The first half was nasty, but MSUB led for a super long time before the Falcons went slightly ahead at the half. It remained close until three or four minutes left at which point it was clear that MSUB wasn’t coming back.
Yellowjacket highlights: Kobe Tereshima had seven assists and six boards; Kendall Denham had 16 points and five fousl; Zharon Richmond had 12 points and five fouls; Daniel Shedden started!! And had 19 points, five boards, and five fouls. No real bench play.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had 29 points; Nikhil Lizotte had nine points; Gabe Colosimo had 12 points, eight boards, and five assists, whoaaa; Nathan Streufert had nine points and six boards; and Gavin Long had 16 points and five boards among a full house and going 9-9 from the line. Off the bench Braden Olsen was 6-6 from the line and finished with nine points and five boards; Harry Cavell had 10 points and seven boards; and Hunter Eisenhower had 12 points.
Yeah. Normal enough score, normal enough result, surprisingly interesting game. Good job to both teams on cleaning it up in the second half.
NNU 69 @ CU-PDX 64
So close and yet so far for the Cavs. Early it looked like the Nighthawks were going to blow out the Cavaliers, but then the Cavs slowly battled back and yet could never really get completely in range -from what we saw, it was always at least two possessions. CU-Portland would push and then NNU would respond and then NNU would push and CU-Portland would blah, and then CU-Portland would push and NNU would blah, and that was the game. NNU has more usable players than the Cavs and thus they won.
Nighthawk highlights: Obi Megwa had 14 points and eight boards; Sam Roth had his best night thus far, finishing with 16 points and nine boards; Marko Lepovic had five boards; and Maurice Jones was back but cold, although he did finish with eight boards. Off the bench Khalil Thompson had nine points in just 14 minutes; and Spider had six points and five boards.
Cav highlights: Jarrett Gray had 24 points; Chris Edward had a double-double with 15 points and 13 boards; and off the bench Cody Starr had a full house including five assists.
This is the game that’s causing us to realize just how little the Cavs have been able to put out this year. They had what looked pretty standard: six or seven players functioning on a good night and three or four functioning on a bad night; in reality they’ve had four functional players on a good night and one functioning on a bad night. Until those numbers shift, they’re not going to be able to win a conference game.
CWU 70 @ WOU 89
The Wildcats were in it for a huuuuge stretch of the first half and we were like “UGH, WE KNEW WE SHOULD HAVE GONE TO THIS GAME,” but then WOU does what WOU does and keeps grinding and by halftime were up by 10 or so and we were like “okay, this is why we didn’t go, because this always happens.” As for the score… Shots were falling more than normal, because honestly it’s not that we didn’t think WOU could blow out the Wildcats, it’s that didn’t think they would because usually they don’t bother.
Wildcat highlights: Malik Montoya had 10 points; Jawan Stepney had five boards; and Fuquan Niles got confronted by reality and was limited to five boards. Off the bench Sage Woodruff had a solid game with 15 points; Karsten Chaplik made an appearance with seven points; and Coleman Sparling had six points.
Wolf highlights: Malik Morgan had nine assists; Tanner Omlid had a flawless full house with 21 points, six boards, five assists, six assists, two blocks, three fouls, and ZERO turnovers; Vince Boumann had six boards; and Riley Hawken had six boards. Off the bench Demetrius Trammell shot well and finished with 14 points; Brandell Evans had 12 points; and JJ Chirnside was on fire and finished with 18 points and eight boards.
Worse numbers than we were expecting from the Wildcats and different numbers than we were expecting from the Wolves. Looks like WOU’s mixing it up and CWU is definitely a good team to do that against because they are one of the more athletic teams in the conference. Congrats and nicely done to both teams!
WWU 86 @ UAF 74
WWU BEAT THE MATH!!!!!! Nicely done Vikings. That score is another one that looks normal but wasn’t. WWU was up 11-0. UAF slowly reeled them back in. Then UAF stayed in it and it was super close until there was about seven minutes left in the game and then WWU broke it open and there was no going back.
Viking highlights: Trey Drechsel played 40 full minutes and had 25 points and six boards; Trevor Jasinsky had 12 points and five assists; Deandre Dickson had 15 points; and Daulton had 23 points and eight boards among a full house of stats. Off the bench Siaan Rojas had nine points.
Nook highlights: Davis Kimble had 17 points and five assists; Tre Eisenhut had 12 points; and Michael Kluting had 13 points and eight boards. Off the bench Amenofis had 11 points; and Donny Wilder had six boards.
We love the numbers from the Vikings and we’re not surprised about the Nooks; they played as well as they were expected to play and the result is very normal. Back on it against SFU, men. Vikings: Yes, the Seawolves are worse than normal this year, but you still need to take them seriously.
SFU 46 @ UAA 53
Was UAA in control the whole time? Definitely not. Was the game ever in doubt? Absolutely. Was it ugly? 100%. But both teams were playing terribly and so for a while there we were like “okay, SFU makes their move at the right time and then they take it,” but ultimately they moved too late and UAA finally got a much needed win. Congrats Seawolves!
Clan highlights: Iziah Sherman-Newsome had 10 boards; Michael Provenzano made noise with 11 points and six boards; JJ Pankratz had six boards; and off the bench Othniel Spence had five boards and four assists.
Seawolf highlights: Malik Clements had 10 boards and a full house; DJ Ursery had 12 boards and a full house; and Brian Pearson had six boards. Off the bench Kylan Osborne had five points; and Josiah Wood had nine points.
Woof. All of y’all need to shape up before facing WWU and UAF respectively, because if either team plays like this against one of those teams, it’s gonna be a blowout with 10 minutes left in the 1st.
Surprisingly fun night of basketball. There wasn’t a game we were truly looking forward to and yet they all turned out to be pretty darn interesting, so that’s good. Game previews up tomorrow morning.
All times pacific.
MSUB @ SPU @ 5:15pm
SPILLINGS!!!!!!! We’re 50/50 on whether or not this is going to be an interesting game. On the one hand… It might be. On the other hand, would we battle rush hour traffic for it? No. We don’t trust either team to play good basketball, and so if MSUB does and SPU doesn’t, then MSUB will likely get say a five point victory over the Falcons. However, if SPU does and MSUB doesn’t, the Falcons are looking at a 20 point or so victory over MSUB. We’ll see. WWU played down to the Yellowjackets, so you never know.
Prediction: The odds of an SPU win are 7-3.
NNU @ CU-PDX @ 7pm
Is this the night that Concordia gets their victory? It seems like a good chance. NNU and Concordia are pretty darn well matched, it’s a home game for the Cavs, and this is among the most obvious opportunities left for a victory on their schedule. That said, NNU can beat Concordia without issue; it’s just a question as to whether or not they will.
Prediction: Pick ’em.
CWU @ WOU @ 7:30pm
We wish we were excited for this game. We’re not particularly, because while CWU and WOU admit similar types of students, if WOU focuses at all we’re going to see yet another game of six of their guys scoring 10 points and every guy including bench dwellers seeing about 20 minutes. We’re starting to get the impression that WOU’s serious work goes on in practice and games are a formality as much as anything else, thus the scores can be closer, but… If we’re seeing it, so is the committee.
Prediction: WOU wins by 10 to 15.
SFU @ UAA @ 8pm
On the one hand we’re like “THIS IS THE PERFECT YEAR FOR SFU TO GET A WIN IN THE DEN!!!!!!!!” and yet on the other hand, UAA has lost their last four games by a combined five possessions. Yeah. They’re home. They’re playing an opponent that they definitively have a talent advantage over. They’re probably gonna win.
Prediction: The odds of a UAA win are 9-1.
WWU @ UAF @ 8pm
One of our favorite games of the year. Doesn’t matter how good the Vikings are nor how bad the Nooks are, WWU has a propensity of losing this game. It’s not the Viking loss that makes us love it, it’s that it’s so random. WWU is always loaded compared to UAF and yet still regularly loses this game. It feels impossible to make it a pick ’em because on paper WWU should win, 10 out of 10 times and this game should be a blow out and yet… We looked up the numbers going back to our first year in the GNAC and WWU has only won every 4th meeting that occurs on either the Tundra or a neutral court. According to the pattern, they have one more loss coming before they’ll get a win.
Prediction: UAF wins a close one.
Yeah, not sure why we’ve started getting into the whole “in ten meetings, this should happen.” Effort vs. talent is probably the easiest way to put it. With the UAA one, context matters. In the context of this particular game with UAA coming in on this particular losing streak; without that, we would think the game would be a pick ’em.
Let’s jump right in…
WWU 100 @ MSUB 91
WWU went up by a lot but MSUB stayed in it and kept battling. There were several times when it looked completely out of reach, but also several times when it looked mildly dicey. As great as the Vikings are, they are a young team and so letting off the gas a little bit too much does make sense, but… Good learning and grinding game, as we expected.
Viking highlights: Trey Drechsel was on fire and finished a perfect 9-9 from the line along with eight boards, five steals, and 26 points among a full house; Deandre Dickson had 16 points and five boards; Trevor Jasinsky was more offensive than normal and scored 12 points along with picking up five fouls; Daulton Hommes played 40 full minutes and had nine boards and 17 points among a full house. Off the bench Brett Kingma finally did something and had 10 points; and Siaan Rojas continues to fulfill the definition of “solid” finishing with 13 points.
Yellowjacket highlights: Kendall Denham again decided to sort of function, scoring 16 points but not having any field stats; Zharon Richmond had 20 points and six boards; and Zack Rollins made noise with 17 points, six boards, and four assists. Off the bench Kobe Tereshima had a great night, going 7-9 and being perfect from the line to ultimately score 20 points and grab six boards on top of it; and Kamal Tall scored seven points.
Nicely done MSUB, continuing to play and attempt to make a game out of it, despite going down by 20+ at one point. Again: great job to the Vikings for taking care of business.
UAA 78 @ NNU 79 in OT
Ouch. Poor UAA. Yet another game that went to OT and they lost. Growing pains. You’re still coming together so nicely Seawolves! Congrats to the Nighthawks on never giving up -it was looking like UAA was going to win, but NNU made the shots and forced overtime and ultimately came away with the ‘W.’
Seawolf highlights: Jack Macdonald had five boards and 15 points; and Brian Pearson had 19 points, 10 boards, and six blocks among a full house. Off the bench Malik Clements had 19 points on great shooting; and DJ Ursery had six points, five boards, and five assists.
Nighthawk highlights: Obi Megwa continues to impress with 27 points; Sam Roth had six boards; Marko Lepovic had five boards; and Jayden Bezzant had 25 points. Off the bench Felix White had six boards and six points; and Spider Adetunki had five boards.
Really good teamwork from the Nighthawks. As we always say: teamwork makes the dream work!
UAF 86 @ CWU 83
This game was super fun, if not a little odd. Initially CWU was owning it and it was like “okay, the Wildcats are gonna roll.” Oh no, no, no. It was close for a super long time and then UAF broke it open, despite constantly losing the rebounding battle, which was disturbing. Joe Lendway has some of the flattest feet we’ve ever seen. CWU never felt down and out and as UAF turned off the gas, CWU kept the pedal to the metal and hit a bunch of threes down the stretch including one at the buzzer. If there had been even a minute more, they would have won. Go figure.
Nook highlights: Alex Baham had 22 points including going 6-6 from the line; Davis Kimball had 18 points and six boards; Tre Eisenhut had 14 points; Joe Lendway had six boards; and Michael Kluting had 11 points and 10 boards for the double-double. Off the bench Amenofis Mitchell had eight points; and Donny Wilder had eight points, six boards, and six assists.
Wildcat highlights: Khalil Shabazz actually functioned again finally and had 25 points and seven assists; Malik Montoya had seven boards and four assists; and off the bench Sage Woodruff had eight points; and Coleman Sparling had seven boards.
Thems are some nasty numbers Wildcats, Fuquan was kept quiet, but we’re not sure if it was the Nooks that did it or if he was just having an off night. The Nooks were aggressive, but… Eh. Inconclusive. Congrats to UAF on pulling out the win.
CU-PDX 62 @ SMU 75
The score pretty much tells the story. CU-Portland hung around for a while, but by probably ten minutes left in the first SMU went up and that was all she wrote. Great job to the Saints on continuing to push through. Learning game! Yay!
Cavalier highlights: Bryan Michaels had 13 points including going 7-8 from the line; Chris Edward had 12 points and 10 boards for the double-double; Hunter Sweet started and had 20 points including going 8-8 from the line; and off the bench Jace Cates had five boards and five points.
Saint highlights: Matt Dahlen had 10 points and six boards; EJ Boyce bounced back and had 14 points and seven boards; and Luke Chavez had an off night but still had six boards and five assists. Off the bench Jared Matthews had five boards and nine points; BJ Standley had 10 points; and Tavian Henderson had 12 points and six boards.
Not much to say except keep keeping on Cavs, and keep grinding Saints.
WOU 83 @ SPU 79
Good lord does that score not tell the whole picture. It was close, then WOU started walking, then SPU said ‘oh no no’ and then it was close for a while and then WOU walked it back up again and then SPU said ‘oh no no’ again, and then… The final score. We’re kind of disappointed in WOU because seriously?! Laying off against SPU? C’mon men, you know better than that.
Wolf highlights: Tanner Omlid had 20 points, nine boards, and a full house; Ali had 10 points; and Riley Hawken had 20 points and five boards. Off the bench Demetrius Trammell had five points; Janvier Alaby had seven points; and JJ Chirnside had 13 points and four boards.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had nine points and eight boards; Nathan Steufert had 10 points, five boards, and five fouls; and Gavin Long had 11 points and went 5-6 from the line. Off the bench Braden Olsen had seven points; Harry Cavell had 13 points and five boards; and Hunter Eisenhower had five points.
Honestly: We’re really displeased with the numbers of both of these teams. It’s not a matter of “oh, both teams are good, so the numbers are bad,” no, it’s a matter of both teams making a bunch of stupid decisions. It is what it is.
Fun night of basketball. Largely the epitome of the mid-season grind. Congrats to all on battles well fought.
All times pacific.
UAA @ NNU @ 6pm
NNU reaaally wants to get a win, but so does UAA. The question is who wants it more? UAA has been coming together fantastically; NNU has been together fantastically, despite the setback against UAF. All three of these teams are fairly equivalent in what they’re doing and what they’re trying to do, although we still think UAA is slightly above the other two. That said… It’s a road game and the difference isn’t that much.
Prediction: Pick ’em.
WWU @ MSUB @ 6:30pm
Part of us is excited about this game because it’s like “MSUB COULD TOTALLY UPSET!!!!!!!” but this isn’t the team that does that to WWU; UAF is the team that does that to WWU. It should be a good chance for the Vikings to beat the Yellowjackets through grinding it out, because regardless as to the lack of numbers: MSUB does have a good home hive advantage.
Prediction: WWU wins convincingly.
CU-PDX @ SMU @ 7pm
Oh ho ho, is this the game CU-PDX gets the upset? Honestly, probably not. SMU just got a huuuge workout against WOU and they’re gonna feel pumped and like they just faced the best the conference has to offer and came back from being down by 17 and… They should feel proud. But they can’t overlook Concordia. We’re wondering how much of a factor the overlook was with UAF. Stay on it Saints.
Prediction: SMU wins, but it may or may not be a little too close for comfort.
WOU @ SPU @ 7pm
We’re sooo excited for this game. It’s another game that Tanner is going to get a chance to run and we’re really going to get to see the coaching of Jim Shaw. We’re incredibly fond of getting to see people at their best and Ali just had a great game, one of the best games he’s had all year, and so hopefully he keeps that going; Riley Hawken has long reminded us of 2015 player of the year and SPU alum Riley Stockton, so we’re excited to see another great Riley back in the SPU gym; Demetrius Trammell was quiet on Thursday, so hopefully he’ll make some noise. Lots of good opportunities. It should just be an awesome fun game all the way around.
Prediction: Pick ’em-ish. We honestly expect WOU to win, but… SPU has the ability to beat anyone on any given night, so… We’ll say the odds are 8-2 that WOU wins.
UAF @ CWU @ 7pm
Another game we’re really excited for. CWU has good moments and bad as do the Nooks of UAF, but the thing is: UAF is effectively on vacation to the tropical locale that is E-berg, so… they’re bound to be stoked. CWU is not good at teamwork, while the Nooks are realizing there’s no way that they can win without it. We swear by last year’s SMU team and their whole thing was beating people that had a talent advantage over them via teamwork and so… This should be a really interesting game.
Prediction: Pick ’em.
Another night of a bunch of super exciting games. Should be good. Tweet at us? We watch all of them, but are less verbose than we have been in past years.
What a fun night of games! Don’t let the scores fool you -every game was close.
WWU 69 @ SFU 54
SFU was in it for a good chunk of the first half and then WWU walked it up and walked away and was for the most part able to stay there. Teamwork makes the dream work. Live by the streaky shooter, die by the streaky shooter.
Viking highlights: Trey Drechsel had 13 boards; Siaan Rojas started and had eight boards and 10 points; Deandre Dickson had 13 boards and 17 points -holy guacamole-; Trevor Jasinsky had 13 points; and Daulton Hommes had a “quiet night” with a full house including 11 points and two blocks. Off the bench Brett Kingma had seven points and three steals; and Brad Wallace had six points and four assists.
Clan highlights: Kedar Salam had 26 points and seven boards.
Woof. The fact that the Clan led at one point proves how fickle things were. Once the Vikings kicked into gear it was all over. Congrats to the Viks on a good win and good luck to SFU in bouncing back.
SFU 73 @ MSUB 78
SFU led by 15 at one point. Once again: Live by the streaky shooter, die by the streaky shooter. This is an interesting result because as noted: SFU has better shooters but MSUB has the better fundamentals and… fundamentals won the day. Again.
Clan highlights: Kedar Salam had 22 points and five boards; and Michael Provenzano had five assists; Tyrell Lewin had 17 points and seven boards; and off the bench Othniel Spence had 16 points.
Yellowjacket highlights: Zharon Richmond had 18 points, nine boards, and a full house; and Tyler Green had 22 points and a full house. Off the bench Kobe Tereshima had 11 points and five boards; Kamal Tall had five points; and Daniel Shedden had eight points and five boards.
The “all underachieving team” can basically be made up of players from these two teams. Michael Provenzano, JJ Pankratz, Kendall Denham, and Kamal Tall are all guys we’ve written and highlighted regularly in the past and yet none of them have done much this year. Still -fun game to watch, congrats to both teams on valiant effort.
UAF 80 @ NNU 74
THIS GAME WAS SO MUCH FUN. Despite Maurice Jones being gone, which may or may not have been what made it fun. We’re withholding judgment because you never know and it was still back and forth the whole time. One team would be up for a bit and you’d think “okay, cruise control?” Hoooo no, absolutely not. Went until the final minute or so and then UAF kept the lead, but it was still exciting even then because… Was NNU gonna pull late game theatrics? Didn’t happen, but it very plausibly could have.
Nanook highlights: DONNY WILDER ACTUALLY FUNCTIONED and had 12 points and seven boards; Alex Baham had 17 points, five boards, and four assists; Davis Kimball had 16 points and five assists; and Tre Eisenhut started and had 11 points. Off the bench Amenofis Mitchell had 10 points; and Michael Kluting had six points.
Nighthawk highlights: Obi Megwa had 16 points, six boards, and six assists; Sam Roth had eight boards; and Jayden Bezzant had 24 points. Off the bench Dylan Brink had eight points; Felix White had six points; and Spider Adetunji had five points and eight boards.
Congrats to both teams on a game well played.
UAA 71 @ CWU 72 in OT
What’s funny about this game, is it actually wasn’t that exciting for huge stretches. At one point CWU led by 10 and it was like “alright, they’re rolling.” Nooope. Not with Anchorage around. Poor Anchorage and their growing pains; they’ve lost their last three games by a combined 10 points. Zoinks. It gets better? No, no question: the experience comes and it does get better. While yes, you’d be winning with Jacob, the thing is we’ve seen you grow so much as a team without him, that it may be painful but it’s probably worth it.
Seawolf highlights: DJ Ursery had six boards; Josiah Wood had five boards and eight assists; Jack MacDonald had 17 points; and Brian Peason had six boards and eight points. Off the bench Malik Clements had 11 points; and Drew Peterson had 12 points.
Wildcat highlights: Khalil Shabazz had five boards; Jawan Stepney had 14 points and six assists; and Fuquan Niles was contained with 11 boards and a mere eight points. Off the bench Naim Ladd had 12 points; Sage Woodruff had seven boards and 13 points; and Cameron Williams had seven points.
Again: fun game and pretty good in terms of not taking mind-blowingly stupid shots. There were definitely some, but it was particular players and not any type of epidemic. Congrats to both teams.
CU-PDX 72 @ SPU 74
Lord knows what went wrong in the final minute, but SMU now knows that they best watch their backs because they’re now the Cavs latest target to get their first GNAC win of the year.
Cav highlights: Jarrett Gray had 27 points and eight boards; Bryan Michaels had nine points; Chris Edward had 13 points and four blocks; Hunter Sweet started and had 10 points and five boards; and off the bench Cody Starr had five boards.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had five boards; Nikhil Lizotte had 10 points; Gabe Colosimo had 10 points; Nathan Streufert had eight points and nine boards; and Gavin Long had 15 points. Off the bench Braden Olsen had seven points; and Harry Cavell had 14 points and seven boards among a full house.
And another team Cougs it against SPU. SPU was missing TWO STARTERS and the Cavs couldn’t pull it off. Interesting. Or SPU is just that good. Who knows?
WOU 79 @ SMU 71
OH MY GOD!!!!!!! This game was fairly nuts. The Wolves were in fact running and Tanner Omlid played a whopping 34 minutes and was on track for it even before SMU came roaring back from a 17 point deficit. There was some fun play from the Wolves bench, but… Never turn your back on the Saints, even if their numbers are collectively laughable.
Wolf highlights: Tanner Omlid had 19 points and six boards among a full house; Vince Boumann had 10 points and five boards; and Ali Faruq-Bey had 14 points. Off the bench Janvier Alaby had seven points and four boards; and Darius Luborn had five points.
Saint highlights: Luke Chavez had 13 points; and off the bench Jared Matthews had seven points; Jordan Kitchen had eight points and five boards; BJ Standley had 14 points and four boards; and Cameron Chatwin continues to get his legs back with six points.
Really excited about the second match-up for these two teams and it was fun watching Tanner Omlid actually play.
Great night of hoops, congrats to all on a great effort.
Game previews will be up tomorrow at 11am.
These are the Player-of-the-Week nominations from the conference games that were played in the week prior to and after the Christmas break.
UAF: Michael Kluting
UAA: N/A —> Donated to Trey Drechsel of WWU.
SFU: JJ Pankratz
WWU: Daulton Hommes
SPU: Nathan Streufert
SMU: Luke Chavez & Tavian Henderson
CWU: N/A —> Donated to Deandre Dickson of WWU.
NNU: Obi Megwa
MSUB: Zharon Richmond
CU-PDX: Christopher Edward
WOU: N/A —> Donated to Tony Miller of SPU.
A couple of reminders about nominations:
- One good game does not a player of the week make. We use what’s essentially the production stat and there are minimums for each game that need to be hit. It doesn’t matter how well a guy plays in one game if he doesn’t do anything in the other.
- We do take into account minutes restrictions and can modify it as needed; in this particular case, Tanner Omlid’s shooting from the field meant modifying the number of minutes played was moot. He’s wholly capable of hitting the minimums even while restricted to 20 minutes a night.
Winner’ll be up in an hour.
Good morning and what a fantastic night of basketball!
SMU 71 @ UAF 78
We may have been wrong, but the score actually makes us really happy because it is such a good match-up and such a great confidence boost for UAF to win this game. This is the type of team they want to be working toward, and so seeing that you can win that way and beat a team similar to yourselves but farther along in the process is amazing. Never underestimate that home tundra advantage. The score is a little misleading -UAF was leading the vast majority of the way and SMU stayed in it, but never really got close.
Saint highlights: Rhett Baerlocher had a good game, finishing with 16 points and seven boards; Luke Chavez finished with 18 points and seven boards; and off the bench Jared Matthews had five points; and Robert Little had seven points and six boards.
Nook highlights: Donny Wilder had nine points and five boards; Alex Baham had 16 points and five boards while shooting 50% from three; Davis Kimball had 11 points; Tre Eisenhut started and had 11 points and seven assists; and Joe Lendway was lights out going 6-7 and grabbing a full house among 12 points, six boards, and a smattering of other stats. Off the bench Michael Kluting had 14 points and a whopping 12 boards, while Amenofis Mitchell had five points.
So SMU had a bad day while UAF played the best basketball we’ve seen them play so far. That’s great news for both teams -SMU still didn’t get blown out on the road, and UAF was able to win convincingly when they work as a team. All good news. Good job to both teams.
NNU 82 @ SFU 81
Really happy about this game, two insanely well matched teams, we can’t wait for the second round at NNU, although our feeling is that one won’t be quite as close -never underestimate the home nest advantage of NNU.
Nighthawk highlights: Obi Megwa had a good game with 27 points and six assists; Sam Roth shot lights out and finished with 10 points and five boards; Marko Lepovic was cold but productive, finishing with 7 boards and three assists despite zero points; Maurice Jones had a double-double with 24 points and 11 boards. No real bench play, but no doubt some good relief minutes.
Clan highlights: Kedar Salam had 27 points along with six boards and five assists; Iziah Sherman-Newsome had 15 points and 11 boards; JJ Pankratz impressed with 14 points; and off the bench Othniel Spence continued his consistency wtih 13 points.
Really solid game by both teams, we’re super ridiculously pleased with both performances, it was a fun game and we feel like both teams grew from it. This could actually turn into an underrated rivalry -they tend to be around the same location in the conference standings regardless as to how good or bad the year is, and so now that both are good it could be pretty fun.
CWU 67 @ WWU 77
It was a game for SO long and then the Vikings eventually pulled away just enough. But CWU was in it, oh ho ho was CWU in it for an insanely long time, despite atrociously bad numbers. Nicely done Wildcats, you’ll get ’em next time.
Wildcat highlights: Jerome Bryant had 13 points; Fuquan Niles was kept quiet with 12 boards and five fouls. Off the bench was where the Wildcats really saw their big play with Naim Ladd having 14 points and Sage Woodruff 13.
Viking highlights: Trey Drechsel had 18 points and 11 boards while going 8-8 from the line; Logan Schilder had eight boards; Deandre Dickson had 13 boards and a full house; Trevor Jasinsky had 12 points; and Daulton Hommes had 17 points and 10 boards. The Vikings had no real bench play, but did get some good relief minutes especially via Brad Wallace.
Rivalry games gonna rivalry game. Congrats to both teams. Can’t wait for the next one!
MSUB 68 @ WOU 92
There we go. Nicely done Wolves. Minutes restrictionnnn.
Yellowjacket highlights: Zack Rollins had 12 points; and off the bench Kobe Tereshima continues to impress with 17 points and six boards; Zack Lessinger had six points; Hafeez Abdul had seven points and four boards; and Daniel Shedden had 12 points and five fouls.
Wolf highlights: Malik Morgan made noise with 11 points; Tanner Omlid had 10 points, five boards, and a perfect full house; Vince Boumann had eight points; and Riley Hawken had 12 points and nine boards. Off the bench Demetrius Trammell had 14 points (oooh!); Janvier Alaby had 11 points; Darius Luborn had six points; and JJ Chirnside had 10 points, five boards, and five assists.
There we go Wolves, back on it. Big games this week against Spartin, so this is really good to see.
SPU 57 @ UAA 54
So the Falcons get the Alaska sweep. Good times. No Jacob Lampkin. Do they get it if he plays? Probably not, but who knows. UAA put up some really bad numbers and SPU still struggled to beat them, so it is what it is. They got the W and that’s what matters.
Falcon highlights: Coleman Wooten had 15 points and nine boards; Gabe Colosimo had six boards; Nathan Streufert had 10 points and 11 boards for the double-double; and off the bench Hunter Eisenhower had seven points.
Seawolf highlights: Jack Macdonald had 12 points; Brian Pearson had nine boards; and off the bench DJ Ursery had a fantastic game with 23 points and seven boards; while Josiah Wood had five points.
Interesting game of basketball if not a good game. This is youth showing through on the part of the Seawolves. At some point they’ll start winning these close games. Definitely easier to do it at home, but Coach Oz usually likes life on hard mode, so why not do it on the road? Coach Oz is our spirit animal as it comes to GNAC coaches, so we rib him regularly, but he’s bae.
Really fun night of basketball, lots of great moments. We’ll get caught up on POW for the split week of GNAC play and then this week tomorrow, so that’ll be exciting. Congrats to all teams on hard fought games well played.
Welcome to the second “real” weekend of GNAC play.
All times pacific.
CWU @ SFU @ 7pm
SFU just Coug’d it against SPU, CWU just beat D3 Linfield. While CWU is the better team, it’s a close match-up and so if SFU can learn from their mistakes and not send 95% free throw shooters to the line while leading by two in the final seconds, we think it could be a super competitive game.
Prediction: Pick ’em.
NNU @ WWU @ 7pm
We’re torn on whether or not this should be a good game. NNU looked good early in the season and they have good players but they haven’t been good as of late. WWU is 4-0 in conference. On the one hand there’s a thought that it still should be a good game if NNU can finally wake up, but on the other hand it’s like “Are you joking? NNU isn’t gonna wake up at WWU of all places.”
Prediction: It’s either a pick ’em, or a blow-out; WWU won’t simply win comfortably.
MSUB @ CU-PDX @ 7:30pm
Concordia is currently 0-5 in conference and while MSUB is back on the upswing… It would be a really good game for Concordia to get back into the groove of things. Concordia is irritating us because we look at where they are in the standings and then we think of their player make-up and we’re like “this can’t be happening, it makes no sense, this is the strongest team they’ve had since they’ve been in the conference,” so… We keep expecting something to happen. As with Simon Fraser in other years: something will happen eventually.
Prediction: Pick ’em, but we also won’t be surprised if MSUB straight-up wins.
SPU @ UAF @ 8pm
Who knows? SPU just had a team Coug it against them, meanwhile having as perfect of numbers as we’ve ever seen. The numbers say they should have won by 30 and yet they still almost lost, and so… On the one hand, it should be hard for UAF to win if the Falcons put up numbers like that; on the other hand, they’re now on the road so why shouldn’t the Nooks get the ‘W’?
Prediction: SPU comes away with the ‘W,’ but no inclination on the margin.
SMU @ UAA @ 8pm
We’re super excited for this game because we think SMU has no real good solution for Jacob Lampkin himself, and yet the overall team should have no problem with UAA. Jacob Lampkin has been singlehandedly carrying the Seawolves and so if he has the type of game we know he’s capable of (30 & 15), we think SMU is going down. If he doesn’t and it’s more teamwork reliant, then SMU shouldn’t have any type of problem with the Seawolves and it should be a great middle-of-the-season “grinding,” game.
Prediction: SMU wins comfortably OR the Seawolves win a close one. We don’t think if it’s close it’ll favor SMU.
Overall it should be a good night. Good luck to all of the teams.
Be safe, have fun, go GNAC!
Topic: What we’ve learned and can extrapolate going into conference play.
We used to know something about GNAC men’s basketball. In our first year, we did because the GNAC was knowable. Enter the last two years where it’s been massive amounts of parity, except WOU always being amazing.
This year, admittedly some of what’s making it hard this year is that the Pac-West is an absolute mess in the same way we were last year, and playing so many games against them means that it’s hard to extrapolate the meaning of any given win, so… Maybe it’s not so much that we don’t know anything, as there’s just still not enough data, despite that 1/3 of the season is over.
These are our thoughts on each team as they stand now:
If they can gel, UAF could still put a fairly decent season together. Because of non-con, regardless as to what they do they will need the autobid, but making the conference tournament is still a possibility. Kimball Davis, Michael Kluting, and Alex Baham all show promise, plus Donny Wilder has been slumping and if he bounces back, that could make a huge difference.
This is part of why the season feels so strange. Everyone was telling us UAA would be great, we felt 60/40 about it but thought Jacob was fantastic, but we didn’t expect the Seawolves to be as mediocre as they are nor did we truthfully expect Jacob to have played as well as he has. It’s all going to be about him staying healthy and Coach Oz being able to get the rest of the guys up to speed. For the Seawolves the conference tournament is do or do not; there is no try, plus it would suck to miss it when you finally host it.
BETTER THAN NORMAL!!!!!!! We’re sooo excited about SFU, but unfortunately the other two conferences are such a mess that we can’t give them quite as much credit as we’d like. They’re also 0-2 in conference play, which helps nothing. Wait and see. Unfortunately their “up” year is coming in an up year for the rest of the conference too, so they may still end up in 11th, but they’ll probably actually win five or six games in conference, which is massively better than their usual 3-17 type performances.
We still think that they’re the deepest and the best in the conference, but with Trey slumping and Deandre adjusting to being a starter, Daulton has been carrying the load and it’s a lot different for a sophomore to carry the load than a senior (e.g. Tanner Omlid). We’re not convinced anything can really be done, because they have had performances like the WOU game, thus it’s just a matter of if things’ll click during any given game. It’s interesting -they have a lot of talent and so it’s much less teamwork reliant, but at the same time in games that are hard, they don’t have that propensity for falling back on teamwork.
We love Gabe Colosimo, but we are 100% not convinced that even with as perfect as he was in the Stanislaus game that all of their issues have simply come from not having him. This team is funny in that every single piece is there and yet often they just can’t get it to work as it should. Maybe it’s a youth thing?
This is the blue-collar version of SPU. They’re not as talented, but they’re more athletic, they care more, and they definitely have the mindset of “everyone is doubting us, forget the haters,” which is amazing. It’s funny -we’ve been bandwagon with SMU forever, but this year we feel like it’s so much more because Prib’s system is finally coming into place with his own players and we’re really getting to see this nitty gritty small school, beat the big dawgs, ‘win or lose they’re gonna feel it in the morning’ mindset, which is the best.
This is another school that we’re confused about and they did so little in non-con that we have no idea. On paper their numbers aren’t bad and the win against NNU looked really great, but one of the reasons we really like having CWU tickets: every game is up for grabs. They’re middle of the pack and so winning is always 50/50 in both directions. They can be upset by lower teams, they can beat the top teams, and so… We’ll see. We’re still saying they’ll make the conference tournament, but that’s largely because they did just beat NNU and NNU is going to be their main competition for that final sixth spot.
We loved their non-con and then they just lost convincingly to CWU and now we’re confused. We were like “oh, they’re definitely conference tournament bound,” and now… Who knows? They’ve clearly got the skills and we’re super impressed with Paul Rush’s system now that he’s had time to implement it. Simply getting Maurice Jones to stick around -that would have never happened under a prior coach, and so… Good things are on the horizon, but is the conference tournament one of them this year? We shall see.
They looked soooo good and then reality hit. We’re not anticipating a conference tournament berth. While we don’t talk about non-D2 games on this blog, we still keep an eye on all of them and look at all of the numbers, and… Honestly: We’re really not impressed. Kendall Denham needs to get his head back in the game because he’s a lot better than he’s been playing this year. It would be nice to see him actually play like we know he can, especially because it is in fact his senior year, but… There’s a good amount of doubt that he actually will, which is unfortunate.
*beats head against desk* Can an entire team be slumping? CU-PDX proves that yes, yes they can. They have so many guys that when we look down the roster we’re like “oh, he’s really good!” and yet… No. Literally though, looking down their roster: Jace Cates, Cody Starr, Jarrett Gray, Bryan Michaels, Christopher Edward, Taylor Harris, and Hunter Sweet all are legit, and yet… the Cavs are 4-8. We know Coach B too well for this to be a coaching thing -this is the whole “I sent a raft/boat/helicopter, what are you waiting for?” thing. Hopefully they figure it out, because depending on how much of a mess the rest of non-con is, they could be a dark horse for the conference tournament.
We bow down to Tanner Omlid and Jim Shaw because it appears as though it’s Tanner Omlid with a 2K rating of 99 and everyone else in the high 60s to low 70s, and yet… They have a quality non-con schedule and only one loss, that being to a super talented WWU teams. This is yet another variation on talent vs. teamwork, but they throw the best coach in the conference into the mix, so… No idea what their in-conference record will actually be. Something like 16-4 would be our guess, but it could be less, it could be more, and regardless: We think they’ll win the conference again, although don’t regret picking them 2nd because on paper they should be.
Ultimately: We still feel like we have no idea what we’re looking at, but also feel confident that when we get to the end of the season, we’ll understand why we have no idea.
We’re continuing it because we can and because our brain was too fried to continue yesterday.
Topic: The GNAC as a conference Know/Want-to-Know/Learned chart.
We came into the season with an existential crisis of “what are we even looking at?!” and now that non-conference play is over we’re still in the midst of the existential crisis going “what are we even looking at?!”
The good news is: We collectively did well during non-con; the GNAC looks to be the strongest conference in the Region, and so it’s probably gonna be another year of beating each other up, but it should be really good basketball, ultimately ending with multiple teams making the WOU hosted Regional. And yes: calling it now: WOU hosts, even if they lose four conference games. There’s no way any West Region team is getting through conference play with less than three losses and WOU’s SOS is fantastic and the GNAC is the strongest conference, so… It should be theirs, provided Tanner Omlid stays healthy.
Here is our pre-season prognostication along with our thoughts now. We’re going to go ahead and leave it as it was, even though we now know that WOU is number one, although WWU did kill them.
1. Western Washington -WWU still has more options than WOU, but WOU has Tanner Omlid. P.S. We love you Daulton, that’ll be you as a senior.
2. Western Oregon -Tanner Omlid is putting the team on his back when needed, and honestly: We think it has a lot to do with the coaching. Consider us members of the Church of Jim Shaw.
3. Seattle Pacific -They have the skill and the grit, it’s just a matter of cohesion.
4. Saint Martin’s -LOVE PUTTING THEM HERE NOW!! They’ve been fantastic. Amazing non-con. So excited. We also are members of the Church of Alex Pribble.
5. Central Washington -Exceeding expectations-ish. Coleman Sparling is proving to be legit and not just nepotism, so that’s fun.
6. Alaska-Anchorage -Thank-you Jacob Lampkin for not making this seem completely ridiculous.
7. CU-Portland -This team is slumping. They have way more talent and skills than have been on display as of late, so… Hopefully they come out of it soon.
7. Northwest Nazarene -Solid team, but it’s hard to say just how solid. They played a decent non-con, but we really want to see them in the context of the GNAC.
9. Alaska-Fairbanks -We like a number of their guys, but they seem above average in a conference of good to great. We don’t think they have any guys that would start at WWU/WOU/SPU/SMU except Donny Wilder, and he’s been super quiet this year.
10. MSU-Billings -They have good guys, but their non-con was very side-eyeable considering what their record was with how many NAIA teams they played before losing to 2/3 of the Hawaii schools.
11. Simon Fraser -Definitely better than normal, but also a very side-eyable non-con. We want to see them in the GNAC.
We’re gonna skip noting a set schedule, but… more blog posts are coming today!