WWU's Dominguez Earns GNAC Coach of Month Award
Dominguez has Vikings off to a 20-0 start.
Dominguez has Vikings off to a 20-0 start.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

PORTLAND, Ore. - It has been a good three months for Tony Dominguez.

The first-year Western Washington University men’s basketball head coach and long-time assistant has the Vikings off to a 20-0 start, including a perfect record of 9-0 in January earning him GNAC Coach of the Month honors.

Eight of WWU’s nine wins in January came by double-digits; the ninth was a last-second 86-85 win over Central Washington at Carver Gymnasium in front of a regional television audience on ROOT Sports.

February isn’t off to a bad start either – a 83-76 overtime home win over Seattle Pacific last Saturday.

That victory extended WWU’s school and conference-record win streak to 26 games and also was a school-record 21st consecutive home win.

With a victory this Thursday at Northwest Nazarene, the nationally second-ranked Vikings will match their all-time record for most consecutive wins to start a season.  WWU’s 1971-72 team also began the season with 21 wins.

Guard John Allen and forward Paul Jones led the Vikings in January averaging 16.9 and 15.6 points, respectively.  Allen also led WWU in the month with 35 assists and was perfect from the foul line making all 12 of his attempts.

Jones shot a team-best 57.3 percent from the floor, converting on 55 of 96.  He also averaged 6.4 rebounds.

Forward Austin Bragg was also a key contributor for Dominguez, who replaced 27-year head coach Brad Jackson after spending 17 years at WWU, the last two as an associate head coach.

Bragg, who shared Red Lion GNAC Player of the Week honors last week with Kyle Fossman of Alaska Anchorage, averaged a team-best 7.5 rebounds in the month.  He also scored 9.9 points per game and shot 52.5 percent from the floor.

Western had impressive team numbers as well in January, outscoring its opponents by an average margin of 15.5 points, while outshooting them 51.1 to 39.6.   The Vikings opponents only shot 25.0 percent from the three-point line in the month making 44 of 176.

Following Thursday’s game at Nampa, WWU travels to Ellensburg Saturday for a rematch with Central Washington before finishing its regular-season with three home games in its final five contests, including a 1 p.m. nationally televised game against Simon Fraser on Mar. 2.