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Saints Slip Into Slim First Place Lead As First Half Ends
In addition to his 10.2 points per game for the Saints, B.J. Standley is 11th in Division II with a .915 free throw percentage.
In addition to his 10.2 points per game for the Saints, B.J. Standley is 11th in Division II with a .915 free throw percentage.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

SAINTS SURGE: In the first of two weeks where the conference’s top four teams are battling each other, Saint Martin’s has pulled ahead as the slight leader.

The Saints were the only team in the four-team logjam at the top of the standings to win both games last week, running the team’s winning streak to four games. The week started with a 64-59 win at Western Oregon on Thursday night. The Saints won the game thanks to outscoring the Wolves 37-27 in the second half in an otherwise close battle. The trip closed with an easy 89-77 win at Concordia on Saturday in a game that saw for SMU players score in double figures while shooting 53.3 percent from the field.

Western Oregon, Seattle Pacific and Northwest Nazarene all emerged with a split to remain tied for second in the GNAC at 6-2. The Wolves rebounded from Thursday’s loss to edge out Seattle Pacific on Saturday, 73-71. The Falcons opened the road trip with another close one on Thursday, edging Concordia 80-78.

The Nighthawks opened up with an 83-73 win over Alaska on Thursday, but Alaska Anchorage rose to the occasion to knock off NNU on Saturday, 85-73. The Seawolves limited the Nighthawks to just 13.3 percent from three-point range, which proved the difference in the game.

The first half of the GNAC season will close this weekend with some more key battles between those top-four teams. Seattle Pacific and Saint Martin’s will square off in Lacey on Tuesday night while Western Oregon plays at Northwest Nazarene on Saturday.

ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAMS: The following GNAC Players have been recognized with all-tournament team honors during the 2018-19 season...

PacWest/GNAC Conference Challenge (Nov. 9 & 10 at Honolulu): Spencer Sweet (UAF), Tyler Brimhall (UAA).

CCAA/GNAC Challenge (Nov. 9 & 10 at La Jolla, Calif.): Trevor Jasinsky (WWU), Othniel Spence (SFU).

Concordia Oxford Suites Classic (Nov. 16 & 17 at Portland): Obi Megwa (NNU, Most Valuable Player), Adonis Arms (NNU), Hunter Sweet (CU).

THIS WEEK'S GNAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Tyler Brimhall
Alaska Anchorage
G/F • 6-5 • Jr. • Logan, Utah

Brimhall posted a pair of solid performances to lead the Seawolves to a sweep of Central Washington and Northwest Nazarene, finishing with 43 points and 14 rebounds while shooting 57 percent from the field and 78 percent from three-point range. In Thursday’s 79-63 win over the Wildcats, Brimhall finished with 21 points, nine rebounds and four assists, shooting 7 of 14 from the field and 6 of 9 from three-point range. He then led the Seawolves with 22 points and five rebounds in Saturday’s 85-73 win over the Nighthawks. He connected on 5 of 7 from the field and 10 of 12 from the free throw line.

Also Nominated: Jarrett Gray (Concordia), Tyler Green (Montana State Billings), Adonis Arms (Northwest Nazarene), Jordan Kitchen (Saint Martin’s), Julian Roche (Simon Fraser), Darius Lubom (Western Oregon), Trevor Jasinsky (Western Washington).

AROUND THE GNAC
ALASKA
• The Nanooks saw their losing streak grow to six games with an 83-73 loss to Northwest Nazarene on Thursday and a 68-59 loss to Central Washington on Saturday.

• Junior guard Tymoryae Glover once again led Alaska with 37 points and 18 rebounds in the two home games. He was one of three UAF players to score 18 points against Northwest Nazarene to go with eight rebounds. Glover then came off the bench to lead all scorers with a double-double of 19 points and 10 rebounds against Central Washington. Glover enters the week averaging 11.3 points and 4.7 rebounds per game.

• Junior guard Spencer Sweet finished with 33 points in the two games and shot 58.3 percent from three-point range. He was one of the three with 18 points against Northwest Nazarene before adding 15 points against Central Washington, making 5 of 8 from the field and 3 of 5 from three-point range. Sweet is averaging 13 points per game and is fourth in the GNAC with a .873 free throw percentage (48-55).

• Junior forward Michael Kluting had the other 18-point performance against Northwest Nazarene, adding eight rebounds. Kluting is averaging 13.6 points per game and leads the GNAC with 8.7 rebounds per game.

• Alaska enters the week averaging 73.1 points and 32.9 rebounds per game. The Nanooks are third in the GNAC in three-point defense (.329).

• Alaska finishes the first half of the GNAC season on the road, playing at Western Washington on Thursday and at Western Washington on Saturday.

ALASKA ANCHORAGE
• Alaska Anchorage picked up a big home sweep, scoring a 79-63 win over Central Washington on Thursday before knocking off Northwest Nazarene on Saturday, 85-73.

• Junior guard/forward Tyler Brimhall was named the GNAC Men’s Basketball Player of the Week for a pair of consistent games, finishing with 43 points and 14 rebounds while shooting 57.1 percent from the field and 72.7 percent from three-point range. Brimhall opened the week by scoring 12 points with nine rebounds against CWU, making 7 of 14 from the field and 6 of 9 from three-point range. He then led all scorers with 22 points against Northwest Nazarene, going 5 of 7 from the field and 10 of 12 from the free throw line. Brimhall is fifth in the GNAC both scoring and rebounding with 16.8 points and 6.6 rebounds per game.

• Junior guard Jack Macdonald scored 41 points in the two games, making 12 of 24 from the field. Macdonald led the Seawolves with 23 points against Central Washington on 9 of 15 from the field to go with three rebounds and three assists. He then finished with 18 points against Northwest Nazarene with three rebounds and six assists. Macdonald is averaging 10.8 points per game.

• Junior guard Niko Bevens added double digits in both games, connecting for 14 against Central Washington and 19 points against Northwest Nazarene. He made 7 of 17 from three-point range per week as Bevens ranks second in the GNAC with 3.06 three-pointers made per game.

• Alaska Anchorage enters the week averaging 72.9 points and 32.4 rebounds per game. The Seawolves lead the GNAC and rank 21st in Division II with 17.3 assists per game. Alaska Anchorage also ranks second in the GNAC with a .739 free throw percentage and 3.81 blocked shots per game and is 26th in Division II with a 1.38 assist/turnover ratio.

• Alaska Anchorage is on the road this week, playing at Simon Fraser on Thursday and Alaska Anchorage on Saturday.

CENTRAL WASHINGTON
• For the third straight week, Central Washington split its games. The Wildcats took a 79-63 loss at Alaska Anchorage on Thursday before scoring a 68-59 win over Alaska on Saturday.

• Freshman forward Zellie Hudson led the Wildcats with 21 points and seven rebounds in the two games, making 7 of 9 from the field and 6 of 6 from the free throw line. After scoring just four points at Alaska Anchorage, Hudson led the Wildcats with 17 points and six rebounds against Alaska, connecting on 5 of 6 from the field and 6 of 6 from the free throw line. Hudson is averaging 6.6 points per game in 16 games, mostly in a reserve role.

• Sophomore Malcolm Cola also finished with 21 points and seven rebounds in the two games. He opened the week by scoring 12 points at Alaska Anchorage, making 5 of 10 from the field to go with three rebounds. Cola added nine points and four rebounds at Alaska. Cola is averaging 10.1 points per game and is tied for fifth in the GNAC with one blocked shot per game.

• Central Washington has five players averaging double-digit scoring. Junior guard Gamaun Boykin leads the way, averaging 13.6 points per game while junior guard Jeryn Lucas is averaging 11.6 points per game. Senior guard Malik Montoya is averaging 10.2 points per game and senior guard Jackson Price is tied with Cola at 10.1 points per contest.

• Central Washington leads the GNAC in scoring at 86.7 points per game. The Wildcats also lead the league with a .399 three-point percentage.

• The Wildcats are home for their next three games, hosting Western Oregon on Thursday and Concordia on Saturday.

CONCORDIA
• Concordia dropped a pair of home games last week, falling short in an 80-78 loss to Seattle Pacific on Thursday before losing 89-77 to Saint Martin’s on Saturday.

• Senior guard Jarrett Gray was the offensive prime mover once again, finishing with 41 points and 10 rebounds in the two games. He led all scorers against Seattle Pacific with 23 points, making 9 of 12 from the field and 4 of 5 from three-point range to go with six rebounds and three assists. Gray then led the Cavaliers with 18 points against Saint Martin’s on 6 of 11 from the field and 4 of 5 from outside. Gray is seventh in the GNAC in scoring, averaging 15.3 points per game. He also ranks second in the GNAC and 21st in Division II with a .896 free throw percentage (43-48).

• Senior guard Cody Starr contributed 29 points in the contests. He came off the bench to score 13 points against Seattle Pacific with four rebounds. Starr then added 16 points on 20 minutes against Saint Martin’s, adding six rebounds, five assists and two steals. Starr is averaging 9.7 points per game and is third in the GNAC with 4.06 assists per game.

• Junior forward Dakota Ayala scored 24 points in the two games, which included a 10 of 16 performance from the field. He scored 11 of his points against SPU and then finished with 13 points against SMU, making 5 of 8 from the field in both contests. Ayala is averaging 6.1 points per game in 16 games, including seven starts.

• Concordia enters the week averaging 75.6 points per game and 34.8 rebounds per game.

• Concordia closes the first half of the GNAC schedule on the road, playing at Northwest Nazarene on Thursday and at Central Washington on Saturday.

MONTANA STATE BILLINGS
• Montana State Billings took an overtime split on the road. The Yellowjackets prevailed in an 81-72 win at Western Washington on Thursday before falling on Saturday in a three-overtime classic at Simon Fraser, 112-107.

• It was MSUB’s first three-overtime game in the school’s GNAC history and just the second in program history. The first was a 51-48 win over Washington State on Dec. 14, 1981 (when the school was known as Eastern Montana College).  The Yellowjackets are now 7-6 in the GNAC era in overtime games.

• Junior guard Tyler Green led the Yellowjackets with 50 points in the two games. He scored 19 points at Western Washington to go with five rebounds and three assists, making 7 of 16 from the field and 5 of 10 from three-point range. Green then scored 31 at Simon Fraser on 8 of 19 from the field and 10 of 14 from the free throw line. He also had six assists and two steals. Green is fourth in the GNAC in scoring at 16.9 points per game. He leads the GNAC and ranks sixth in Division II with 3.75 three-pointers made per game and is 16th in Division II with a .472 three-point percentage.

• Senior guard/forward Zack Rollins dropped in 44 points in the two games. He opened with 15 points at Western Washington before finishing with 29 points and eight rebounds at Simon Fraser. He shot 9 of 21 from the field and 7 of 15 from three-point range on Burnaby Mountain. Rollins is sixth in the GNAC at 15.8 points per game.

• Freshman forward Brendan Howard added 21 points and eight rebounds in 35 bench minutes at Simon Fraser while junior forward Melvin Newbern, Jr., finished with 14 rebounds.

• Montana State Billings enters the week averaging 80.9 points and 36.2 rebounds per game. The Yellowjackets are third in the GNAC with 25.94 defensive rebounds per game.

• Montana State Billings is home for its next four games, hosting Saint Martin’s on Thursday and Seattle Pacific on Saturday.

NORTHWEST NAZARENE
• Northwest Nazarene split on its trip to Alaska last week, scoring an 83-73 win over Alaska on Thursday before taking an 85-73 loss at Alaska Anchorage on Saturday.

• Junior guard Adonis Arms led the Nighthawks’ offense once again with 49 points in the two games, making 56.7 percent from the field and 13 of 14 from the free throw line. Arms led all scorers with 23 points at Alaska on 9 of 13 from the field. He led NNU with 26 points, six rebounds and five assists at Alaska Anchorage on 8 of 17 from the field and 9 of 9 from the free throw line. Arms is the GNAC’s leading scorer, averaging 22 points per game, and leads the league with 2.29 steals per game. Arms also ranks 17th in the GNAC with a .609 field goal percentage.

• Freshman guard James Nelson finished with 28 points in the two games. Most of his production came at Alaska where he finished with a double-double of 20 points and 11 rebounds. Nelson is averaging 7.9 points per game in 14 games in a reserve role.

• Senior guard Obi Megwa also scored 28 games in the two road contests. He opened with 13 points and five rebounds at Alaska before adding 15 points at Alaska Anchorage on 5 of 11 from the field. Megwa is third in the GNAC in scoring at 17.9 points per game and is sixth with 3.29 assists per game.

• Northwest Nazarene enters the week fourth in the GNAC in scoring at 84.9 points per game and is second in rebounding at 38.3 per game. The Nighthawks lead the league and is 10th in Division II with a .502 field goal percentage and is 30th nationally with 28.43 defensive rebounds per game.

• The Nighthawks will host the Oregon schools this week, welcoming Concordia on Thursday and Northwest Nazarene on Saturday.

SAINT MARTIN’S
• Saint Martin’s moved into sole possession of first place in the GNAC with a weekend sweep. The Saints collected a 64-59 win at Western Oregon on Thursday and an 89-77 win at Concordia on Saturday.

• Senior guard/forward Jordan Kitchen led the Saints with 24 points, five steals and five blocks in the two games, shooting 60 percent from the field. Kitchen finished with 13 points, five rebounds, three steals and three blocks at Western Oregon on 5 of 9 from the field. He then scored 11 points at Concordia to go along with three rebounds, two steals and two blocks. Kitchen is averaging 7.1 points per game and is tied for fifth in the GNAC with one block per game.

• Senior guard EJ Boyce scored 29 points on the road trip. He did his most damage at Concordia, leading all scorers with 26 points on 8 of 18 from the field and five three-pointers. Boyce is averaging 12 points per game.

• Sophomore guard BJ Standley enters the week leading the GNAC and ranked 11th in Division II with a .915 free throw percentage (43-47). Standley went 4 of 5 from the stripe in last week’s games.

• Saint Martin’s enters the week averaging 81.1 points and 33.8 rebounds per game. The Saints lead the GNAC with 8.56 steals per game and 10.88 three-pointers made per game. Saint Martin’s .875 win percentage is tied for 11th in Division II.

• Saint Martin’s made the biggest move of any team in this week’s NABC Division II Coaches Poll, jumping seven spots to No. 16. The Saints also climbed two spots to No. 13 in the D2SIDA Media Poll.

• Saint Martin’s hosts conference travel partner Seattle Pacific on Tuesday before heading to Montana State Billings on Thursday.

SEATTLE PACIFIC
• Seattle Pacific split on its trip to Oregon last week, beating Concordia 80-78 on Thursday before falling at Western Oregon on Saturday, 73-71.

• Sophomore guard Harry Cavell scored 24 points in the two games to lead the Falcons, shooting 56.3 percent from the field. Cavell opened with a 15-point performance at Concordia, making 5 of 10 from the field. He then scored nine points on 4 of 6 from the field at Western Oregon. Cavell enters the week averaging 10.8 points per game.

• Junior guard Gavin Long added 22 points and nine rebounds in the contests. He scored eight points with five rebounds at Concordia before finishing with 14 points and four rebounds at Western Oregon, shooting 6 of 12 from the field. Long is ninth in the GNAC in scoring at 14.5 points per game and leads the league with a .520 three-point percentage (13-25).

• After not playing on Thursday night due to taking the Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), senior forward Sam Simpson led the Falcons with 16 points at Western Oregon, shooting 4 of 9 from the field, 3 of 7 from three-point range and 5 of 7 from the free throw line. Simpson is averaging 9.3 points per game.

• Seattle Pacific is averaging 81.6 points and is third in the GNAC with 36.8 rebounds per game. The Falcons are second in the GNAC and 11th in Division II with a .508 field goal percentage. Seattle Pacific is also 10th in Division II in fewest turnovers (160) and 17th in fewest fouls (226)

• The Falcons finishes up a four-game road trip this week, playing at Saint Martin’s on Tuesday and at Montana State Billings on Saturday.

SIMON FRASER
• Simon Fraser picked up a split close to home last week. The Clan took an 89-81 loss to Western Washington on Tuesday before scoring a 112-107, three-overtime win over Montana State Billings on Saturday.

• The three-overtime game was the first for Simon Fraser in the school’s GNAC history and just the fifth overtime contest for SFU since the 2010-11 season. It was the first three-overtime game for GNAC teams since Mar. 3, 2017 and the first in a conference game since Feb. 13, 2014.

• Sophomore center Julian Roche led Simon Fraser with 43 points and 19 rebounds in the two games, shooting 62.1 percent from the field. He finished with 25 points at Western Washington, making 12 of 17 from the field to go with six rebounds. Roche followed with a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds against MSUB. Roche is eighth in the GNAC in scoring with 14.8 points per game and fifth in rebounding at 6.6 per game. He is one of three GNAC players in the top-10 in both scoring and rebounding.

• Junior guard Michael Provenzano had 45 points and eight assists in the two games. He came up big against Montana State Billings with 32 points on 10 of 17 from the field, 4 of 6 from three-point range and 8 of 9 from the free throw line to go with four rebounds and six assists. Provenzano is averaging 10.8 points per game and leads the GNAC with 5.06 assists per game.

• Simon Fraser enters the week ranked second in the GNAC with 85.1 points per game and is fourth in the league with 36.6 rebounds per game. The Clan is second in the GNAC and 22nd in Division II with 17.1 assists per contest.

• The Clan closes out a three-game homestand this week, hosting Alaska Anchorage on Thursday and Alaska on Saturday.

WESTERN OREGON
• Western Oregon took a split against its fellow top-tier foes, dropping a 64-59 decision to Saint Martin’s on Thursday before scoring a 73-71 victory over Seattle Pacific on Saturday.

• Sophomore guard Darius Lubom led the Wolves with 26 points and 11 rebounds in the two games. Lubom finished with eight points and eight rebounds against Saint Martin’s. He then led all scorers in a reserve role with 18 points with three rebounds and two assists against Seattle Pacific. Lubom is averaging 9.9 points per game.

• Freshman forward Etan Collins scored 18 points and had 20 rebounds in the two games. Collins posted a double-double of 13 points and 13 rebounds against Saint Martin’s, making 5 of 9 from the field, and then finished with five points and seven rebounds against Seattle Pacific. Collins is averaging 7.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.

• Junior forward Riley Hawken finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds in the home games. His best effort came in a 14-point, six-rebound performance against Saint Martin’s. Hawken leads the Wolves in scoring at 13.2 points per game.

• Western Oregon enters the week averaging 79.1 points and 36.2 rebounds per game. The Wolves lead the GNAC in scoring defense (64.5 points allowed per game) and field goal defense (.412). The Wolves are third in Division II in turnover margin (6.6), seventh in turnovers per game (9.6) and 12th in fewest turnovers (164).

• Western Oregon hits the road for a pair this week, playing at Central Washington on Thursday and at Northwest Nazarene on Saturday.

WESTERN WASHINGTON
• Western Washington secured a home split last week, scoring an 89-81 victory over Simon Fraser on Tuesday before taking an 81-72 overtime loss to Montana State Billings on Thursday.

• Junior forward Trevor Jasinsky led the Vikings with 44 points and 19 rebounds in the two games, shooting 44.9 percent from the field and 50 percent from three-point range. Jasinsky scored 20 points against Simon Fraser to go with six rebounds and three assists. He went 5 of 5 from the free throw line. Jasinsky then led all scorers with a double-double of 24 points and 13 rebounds on 9 of 18 from the field. Jasinsky is second in the GNAC with 19.4 points per game and fourth with 7.4 rebounds per game. Ranked third in the league and 24th in Division II with a .892 free throw percentage, Jasinsky is also 13th in Division II with 99 free throws made.

• Junior guard Leif Anderson finished with 30 points and 10 assists in the two games. He scored 15 points against Simon Fraser as he went 5 of 8 from three-point range to go with five assists. Anderson posted the same 15-point, five-assist line against MSUB, going 5 of 10 from the field and 4 of 6 from outside. Anderson is averaging 8.2 points per game.

• Junior guard Tucker Eenigenburg scored 21 points on 6 of 9 from the field and 7 of 7 from the free throw line against Simon Fraser. Sophomore forward Luke Lovelady added a 14-point effort against MSUB on 4 of 6 from the field and 6 of 6 from the free throw line.

• Western Washington enters the week third in the GNAC with 85 points per game and leads the GNAC with 39.4 rebounds per game. The Vikings also lead the league and rank eighth in Division II in free throw percentage (.790). Western also leads the GNAC and is 19th in Division II with 4.6 blocks per game.

• Western Washington closes a four-game homestand with games against Alaska on Thursday and Alaska Anchorage on Saturday.

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