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Hungry Like The Wolves: WOU Wins Team of the Week
Western Oregon forward Riley Hawken is off to a hot start on the 2018-19 campaign, averaging 12.9 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.
Western Oregon forward Riley Hawken is off to a hot start on the 2018-19 campaign, averaging 12.9 points and 6.2 rebounds per game.

Monday, December 17, 2018

PORTLAND, Ore. – Fresh off a 6-1 start to the 2018-19 season, the Western Oregon men's basketball team hit the road this week to start its four-game Hawaiian swing.

Looking to parlay that early momentum into some success on the islands, the Wolves did just that over the weekend. A 2-0 start to the trip - featuring a road victory at Hawaii Hilo and a win against Emmanuel (GA) - ran the team's winning streak up to five and earned it the selection as GNAC Team of the Week.

Head coach Jim Shaw's team was led by forward Riley Hawken, who averaged 19 points and eight rebounds over the two victories. Hakwen was named the GNAC Men's Basketball Player of the Week for his prolific performance. 

Junior Dalven Brushier controlled the action in the backcourt, pouring in 20 points against the Lions after peppering the stat sheet with nine points, six rebounds and three steals on Friday against the Vulcans.

Fellow guard Brandell Evans led WOU against Hawaii Hilo, dropping 16 points and coming up clutch down the stretch to seal the victory.

"We got off to a great start against Hilo and they made a run like every good home team," said Shaw. "We got exceptional guard play from people like Brandell and our pressure allowed us to sustain the lead."

Two days later, it was another strong start that allowed Western Oregon to jump out to a seven-point advantage at the halftime break against Emmanuel. The team then came out of the locker rooms hot and held a double-digit lead for the majority of the second stanza, ultimately cruising to a 76-64 victory.

The win allowed the club to advance to the winner's bracket of the Hoops In Hawaii D2 Power Invitational, where it will face No. 7 UC San Diego in the tournament's second round on Monday night.  

"UC San Diego is a legit top-10 team," Shaw said while looking ahead to the semifinal meeting. "They are a complete team with a goal to win the West. No one has a perfect team but this will be a measuring stick." 

The showdown with the Tritons will tip-off at 8 p.m. (HST). The Wolves will then conclude their trip to Hawaii with a meeting against either Dallas Baptist or Chaminade on Tuesday night.  

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