Western Washington Gets Nod In GNAC Men's Hoop Poll
Jeffrey Parker is one of three returning starters for the Vikings.
Jeffrey Parker is one of three returning starters for the Vikings.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Great Northwest Coaches Poll 2013-14 Records Pts 
 1. Western Washington (7) 20-8, 13-5, 2nd 78
 2. Alaska Anchorage (1) 17-13, 10-8, 4th-T 69
 3. Seattle Pacific (2) 26-6, 15-3, 1st 68
 4. Western Oregon 18-12, 10-8, 4th-T 60
 5. Montana State Billings 12-15, 8-10, 6th-T 41
 6. Central Washington 12-14, 8-10, 6th-T 39
 7. Alaska 18-10, 12-6, 3rd 38
 8. Northwest Nazarene 7-19, 5-13, 9th 21
 9. Simon Fraser 10-16,3-15, 10th 18
     Saint Martin's 9-17, 6-12, 8th 18
(Note: First-place votes in parentheses. Points awarded on a 9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis).

PORTLAND, Ore. –  Since 2009, Western Washington has won three Great Northwest Athletic Conference regular-season men’s basketball titles.

But, it has been almost a decade since the league’s coaches have anointed the Vikings as the favorite in the coaches’ pre-season poll.

Until now.

Western Washington, which hasn’t finished first in the pre-season balloting since the 2005-06 season, graduated three of its top four scorers off a team that barely missed a NCAA West Regional playoff berth.

Coach Tony Dominguez’ team, however, received seven first-place votes and 78 ballot points to outdistance Alaska Anchorage and defending champion Seattle Pacific to claim the pre-season favorite’s role.

The Seawolves edged the Falcons 69-68 for second place though Rusty Osborne’s team received one fewer first-place vote than Ryan Looney’s squad.

Western Oregon finished a solid fourth in the balloting, followed by Montana State Billings, which edged Central Washington by two points for fifth place.  Those two teams tied for sixth a year ago.

Alaska and Northwest Nazarene earned No. 7 and No. 8 pre-season rankings and Simon Fraser and Saint Martin’s tied for ninth.

Western Washington doesn’t return any all-conference players from last year – they’re one of four teams in that situation - but they return three starters – led by forward Anye Turner - and Dominguez added some talented transfers including former Division I player Jaamon Echols from Texas A&M – Corpus Christie.

The Viking recruiting class also features JC standout Ricardo Maxwell, who redshirted last year; 2014 NWAACC Northern Region MVP Kyle Impero and center Mac Johnson, who was a NWAACC South Region all-star at Mt. Hood CC.

Only three returning players earned first or second team all-conference honors last year and two of them will play for Osborne – first team selection Travis Thompson and second teamer Brian McGill.

Thompson was the GNAC’s second leading scorer in 2013-14 with a 21.3 average trailing only Mark McLaughlin of Central Washington who led Division II with a 27.1 average.

McGill, meanwhile, was among the GNAC leaders in scoring and assists ranking 11th (15.6) and second (5.9), respectively.

Seattle Pacific graduated its top two players including consensus All-American David Downs. 

The Falcons, who be bidding for their 11th consecutive NCAA post-season bid, have eight returning lettermen led by honorable mention all-conference guard Riley Stockton. 

They also added two players with Division I experience – Bryce Leavitt and Garrett Swanson who played their freshman seasons at Washington State and Idaho State before playing a year each at the JC level.

Western Oregon has the most returning starters (4) and all-conference players (9) of any team in the GNAC. 

Coach Brady Bergeson’s returnees include forward Andy Avgi, a two-time GNAC honorable mention selection.

Montana State Billings coach Jamie Stevens has just one returning starter – HM forward Austin Hudson – and CWU coach Greg Sparling, who begins his 20th season with 322 career wins, has three but none who scored in double figures a year ago.

Mick Durham, the former Montana State coach, also begins his 20th season, his fourth at Alaska .  He needs 15 more wins to join Sparling in the 300-win club.

Durham returns just one starter and will rely on a recruiting class that includes eight players from the JC ranks.

Dave Daniels will also rely on newcomers at Northwest Nazarene as forward Kevin Rima, an honorable mention GNAC selection is just one of three returnees.

Among Daniels’ recruiting class are five players who have played at the four-year level, three at Division I.

Simon Fraser’s James Blake returns two starters – GNAC second-team all-star Sango Niang and Justin Cole - and four lettermen.  Niang and Cole both previously played at Chaffey CC; in all he has four players from that school on his roster.

Back for second-year head coach Michael Ostlund at Saint Martin’s are three starters, led by forward Ryan Rogers.


Head Coach
:  Tony Dominguez, WWU ‘94 (51-11, 2 years)
:  Greg Meier,  David Shephard, Atiavo Jude
2013-14 Record
:  20-8
: 13-5, 2nd
Returning Letter Winners
: 5
Returning Starters (3)
: Jeffrey Parker (F, 6-6, So., 11.9 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 57-132 3-pointers); Anye Turner (F, 6-7, Sr., 8.5 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 2.2 apg, 1.2 spg, 41 blocks); Joey Schreiber (F, 6-7, So., 10.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 26-64 3-pointers)
Other Returnees
: Colby Mitchell (F, 6-7, Sr., 4.9 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 16 blocks); Mark Hopkins (G, 6-3, Sr., 1.1 ppg, 0.6 rpg)
: Blake Bowen (C, 6-9, Jr., Vancouver, WA – Clark CC); Jaamon Echols (G, 6-0, Jr., Seattle, WA – Texas A&M Corpus Christie & Odessa College); Kyle Impero (G, 6-4, Jr., Everson, WA – Whatcom CC); Mac Johnson (C, 6-8, Jr., Spokane, WA – Mt. Hood CC); Ricardo Maxwell (G, 5-10, Jr., Cincinnati, OH – Edmonds CC); Austin O’Keefe (F, 6-4, Jr., Everett, WA – Bellevue CC); Chris Tanis (F, 6-7, Jr., Bellingham, WA – Whatcom CC)

Team Outlook

After barely missing the NCAA regionals a year, Western Washington looks primed to make a run at its third Elite Eight appearance in the past four years.

Three starters are among five returning letter winners for third-year coach Tony Dominguez including Jeffrey Parker (6-6, So., Richmond, CA – Salesian), who averaged 11.9 points and led the Vikings in three-pointers making 57 of 132. 

Also returning is forward Anye Turner (6-7, Sr., Olympia, WA – Black Hills), who averaged 8.5 points and ranked third in the GNAC in blocks with 41 and sixth in rebounds (7.5), and forward Joey Schreiber (6-7, So., Renton, WA – Eastside Catholic), who contributed 10.7 points per contest.

Just two other players return – forward Colby Mitchell (6-7, Sr., Chugiak, AK), who averaged 4.9 points and 3.7 rebounds, and Mark Hopkins (6-3, Sr., San Antonio, TX), who played in just nine games.

However, Dominguez added three talented transfers and also has available guard Ricardo Maxwell (5-10, Jr., Cincinnati, OH), who redshirted last year after averaging 20.6 points two years ago and earning first team NWAACC all-star honors at Edmonds CC. 

One of the newcomers is Jaamon Echols (6-0, Jr., Seattle, WA – Rainier Beach) who averaged 3.1 points per game during the 2010-11 season at Texas A&M – Corpus Christie. 

Last year Echols averaged 11.3 points at Odessa College in Texas.

Other newcomers include guard Kyle Impero (6-4, Jr., Everson, WA – Nooksack Valley) who averaged 28.3 points per game and was the NWAACC Northern Region MVP last season at Whatcom CC, and forward Mac Johnson (6-8,  Jr., Spokane, WA – Gonzaga Prep), who was a first team Southern Region pick and co-Defensive Player of the Year at Mount Hood after averaging 19.6 points and 10.6 rebounds.

Head Coach
:  Rusty Osborne, Texas ‘88 (192-106, 10 years)Assistants:   Cameron Turner
Grad Assistant:
  Tim Mollerstrom
2013-14 Record
: 17-13
: 10-8, 4th-T
Returning Letter Winners
: 6
Returning Starters (3)
:  Travis Thompson (G, 6-1, Sr., 21.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 109-259 3-pointers, 3.2 apg, 1.2 spg, 1st team GNAC); Brian McGill (G, 6-2, Jr., 15.6 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 24-50 3-pointers, 5.9 apg, 2nd team GNAC); Brad Mears (F-C, 6-9. Sr., 4.4 ppg, 2.9 rpg)
Other Returnees
: Christian Leckband (F, 6-7, Jr., 4.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 19-57 3-pointers); Boomer Blossom (G, 6-2, Sr., 2.4 ppg, 1.7 rpg, 14-34 3-pointers); Jacob Craft (F, 6-7, So., 1.9 ppg, 0.6 rpg)
Dom Hunter (G, 6-0, Jr., Tacoma, WA – Eastern Arizona); Derrick Fain (G, 6-4, Sr., Dallas, TX – The Master’s); Travis Parrish (G/F, 6-3, So., West Bountiful, UT – Utah State); Kevin Bowman (G, 6-2, Jr., Phoenix, AZ – Scottsdale CC)

Team Outlook

Travis Thompson (6-1, Sr., Anchorage, AK – Dimond) had a spectacular junior season, finishing second in the conference in scoring (21.3), free throw percentage (89.2) and three-pointers made (109).

Thompson, who earned first team all-league honors, goes into his senior season ranking 40th in GNAC history in career scoring with 1,197 points.

He’s not the only returning all-conference performer for coach Rusty Osborne, who has won 192 games in 10 seasons.

Also back is point guard Brian McGill (6-2, Jr., Clackamas, OR – Western Oregon), who finished second last season in the GNAC in assists (5.9) and ranked 11th in scoring averaging 15.6 points per game in earning second team accolades

Thompson and McGill are joined by four other returning players, including 6-9 senior center/forward  Brad Mears (South Jordan, UT), who started 17 games and averaged 4.4 points and 2.9 rebounds.

Also back are forwards Christian Leckband (6-7, Jr., Nome, AK) and Jacob Craft (6-7, So., Sandy, UT) and guard Boomer Blossom (6-2, Sr., Soldotna, AK).  That group combined to contribute  8.8 points per game led by Leckband who netted 4.5 points and 2.9 rebounds per contest.

Two four-year transfers and two JC standouts are among the newcomers for Osborne.

Guard Derrick Fain (6-4, Sr., Dallas, TX) played two seasons at NAIA member The Master’s (Calif), averaging 12.2 points and making 60 of 157 three-pointers a year ago.

Guard/forward Travis Parrish (6-3, So., West Bountiful, UT) transferred from Utah State where he played linebacker for the school’s football team the past two seasons.

JC transfers include guard Dom Hunter (6-0, Jr., Tacoma, WA - Decatur), who averaged 18 points and earned second team all-region honors at Eastern Arizona and guard Kevin Bowman (6-2, Jr., Phoenix, AZ - Pinnacle).  Bowman netted 17.2 points per game last season at Scottsdale JC.

Head Coach
:  Ryan Looney, Eastern Oregon ‘98 (118-34, 5 years; Overall, 213-89, 10 years)
:  Grant Leep, Chris Filios, George Parker, Scott Moe
2013-14 Record
:  26-6
: 15-3, 1st
Returning Letter Winners
:  8 (7 from 2013-14)
Returning Starter (3)
:   Riley Stockton (G, 6-4, Sr., 8.1 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 25-83 3-pointers, 3.9 apg, 1.4 spg, HM GNAC); Cory Hutsen (C, 6-8, Sr., 10.8 ppg, 3.2 rpg); Matt Borton (F, 6-4, Sr., 7.6 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 36-84 3-pointers)
Other Returnees
:   Mitch Penner (F, 6-5, Jr., 8.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 15-49 3-pointers, 12 blocks); Brendan Carroll (G, 6-4, Jr., 5.1 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 20-54 3-pointers); Joe Rasmussen (C, 6-8, So., 1.5 ppg, 0.9 rpg); Will Parker (PG, 5-10, So., 0.5 ppg, 04 rpg); Shawn Reid (F, 6-4, Sr., 2.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg in 2012-13)
: Bryce Leavitt (G, 6-4, Jr., Kennewick, WA – North Idaho); Garrett Swanson (F, 6-7, Jr., Spokane, WA – Casper JC)

Team Outlook

Seattle Pacific will be looking to extend its string of 10 consecutive NCAA post-season appearances, the longest in Division II.

Last year the Falcons won both the GNAC regular-season and tournament titles, finishing with a 26-6 overall record and earning a No. 2 seed in the West Regional.

SPU graduated its top two scorers including All-American guard David Downs, but the Falcons next six top scorers all return including starters Riley Stockton (6-4, Sr., Spokane, WA – Ferris), Cory Hutsen (6-8, Sr., Sammamish, WA – Skyline) and Matt Borton (6-5, Sr., Yakima, WA – West Valley).

Stockton averaged 8.1 points and a team-high 5.8 rebounds in earning honorable mention all-league honors.   He also led SPU in steals with 44 and ranked second to Downs in assists with 150.

Hutsen was the team’s No. 3 scorer netting 10.8 points per game and also averaging 3.2 rebounds.  Borton  is the team’s top returning three-point shooter after making 36 of 84.  He averaged 7.6 points and 5.3 rebounds.

Five other lettermen are back including Shawn Reid  (6-4, Sr., Post Falls, ID) who averaged 2.6 points for SPU’s 2012-13 team.  

Other returnees from Ryan Looney’s 2013-14 club are Mitch Penner (6-5, Jr., Seattle, WA – Kennedy), Brendan Carroll (6-4, Jr., Brisbane, Australia), Joe Rasmussen (6-8, So., Mercer Island, WA) and Will Parker (5-10, So., Sammamish, WA). 

Penner and Carroll were the biggest contributors last year among that group, averaging 8.8 and 5.1 points, respectively.

Two former Division I players will bolster SPU’s eight returning letter winners.

Guard Bryce Leavitt played 20 games at Washington State in 2012-13 before averaging 12.7 points and seven rebounds last year at North Idaho.

Forward Garrett Swanson played in 19 games at Idaho State in 2011-12 before transferring to Casper, Wyo., JC where he netted 9.6 points and 6.0 rebounds last season.

WESTERN OREGON WOLVES  (Projected Rank: #4)

Head Coach:  Brady Bergeson, Chapman ’00 (46-38, 3 years)
:  Benjamin Kaufman, Kyle Long, Josh Reber
2013-14 Record
:  18-12
: 10-8, 4th-T
Returning Letter Winners
:  9
Returning Starters (4)
:   Andy Avgi (F, 6-6, Jr., 13.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 1.0 spg,  12 blocks, HM GNAC); Marwan Sarhan (F, 6-8, Sr., 11.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 17 blocks); Devon Alexander (G, 6-1, Jr., 9.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 40-123 3-pointers, 2.9 apg, 2.1 spg); Jordan Wiley (G, 6-6, Jr., 8.7 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 47-126 3-pointers)
Other Returnees
: Jordan Schriber (G/F, 6-6, Jr., 2.3 ppg, 2.1 rpg); Dezmond Dupree-Turner (G, 6-2, Jr., 1.2 ppg, 0.8 rpg); Connor Thompson (C, 6-8, So., 0.0 ppg, 1.0 rpg in 2 games); Adam Hastings (F, 6-6, Sr., 6.4 ppg, 4.7 rpg); Lewis Thomas (F, 6-8, Sr., 6.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg,  27 blocks)
:  Julian Nichols (G, 6-2, Jr., Upland, CA – Chaffey JC); Kelvin Okundaye (G, 6-2, Sr., Leoerrach, Germany (U. of Manheim)

Team Outlook

Coach Brady Bergeson returns four starters and nine letter winners, both league bests, after leading the Wolves to a 18-12 record and a fourth-place GNAC finish a year ago.

Among the returning starters are forward Andy Avgi (6-6, Jr., Woodburn, OR), an honorable mention, all-league selection, and guard Devon Alexander (6-1, Jr., Fontana, CA – Summit), who led the conference in steals, averaging 2.1.

Alexander also averaged 9.7 points, a team-best 2.9 assists and 3.3 rebounds while connecting on 40 of 123 three-pointers.

Avgi was the team’s No. 2 scorer, ranking 20th in the GNAC with a 13.1 points, and the team’s top rebounder, ranking 13th in the conference (5.7).

Also back from last year’s starting unit are forward Marwan Sarhan (6-8, Sr., Alexandria, Egypt) and guard Jordan Wiley (6-6, Jr., McKenzie River, OR).

Sarhan netted 11.6 points and 4.6 rebounds and rejected 17 shots.  Wiley was the team’s top three-pointer shooter, making 47 of 126, No. 3 assist producer with 45 and No. 5 scorer averaging 8.7 points per game.

Also back are forwards Adam Hastings (6-6, Sr., Corvallis, OR – Linn Benton) and Lewis Thomas (F, 6-8, Sr., Perth, Australia), guard/forward Jordan Schriber (6-6, Jr., Tillamook, OR), guard Dezmond Dupree-Turner (6-2, Jr., Spanaway Lake, WA) and center Connor Thompson (6-8, So., Roseburg, OR - Glide).

Hastings started 17 of 30 games and average 6.4 points and 4.7 rebounds.  Thomas added 6.3 points and 3.7 rebounds and blocked a team-best 27 shots.

Schriber played in all 30 games, averaging 2.3 points.  Dupree-Turner scored 22 points in 18 contests and Thompson made two appearances. 

Among the newcomers for WOU is Julian Nichols (6-2, Jr., Upland, CA), who averaged 8.6 points, 4.6 rebounds and 5.5 assists in earning second-team all-conference honors at Chaffey CC.

Head Coach
:  Jamie Stevens, MSU Billings ’99 (46-41, 3 years)
:  Brad Schmit
Grad Assistant:
Darren Nye
2013-14 Record
:  12-15
: 8-10, 6th-T
Returning Letter Winners
: 5
Returning Starters (1)
:  Austin Hudson (F, 6-7, Sr., 14.3 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 26 blocks, HM GNAC)
Other Returnees
:  Marc Matthews (G, 6-2, So.,  7.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 28-77 3-pointers); Tyler Nelson (F, 6-7, Sr., 3.2 ppg, 3.3 rpg); Jace Anderson (G, 5-10, So., 1.7 ppg, 0.3 rpg); Luke Adams (F, 6-7, So., 1.0 ppg, 0.6 rpg)
: Antoine Hosley (G, 6-0, Sr., Portland, OR – Utah Valley); Gary Gordon (G, 6-3, Jr., Philadelphia, PA – Northwest, Wyo. JC); Momir Gataric (G/F, 6-5, Jr., Sunnyvale, CA – West Valley College); Emmanuel Johnson (F, 6-7, Jr., San Antonio, TX – Frank Phillips JC)

Team Outlook

Forward Austin Hudson (6-7, Sr., Salt Lake City,  UT), who was the conference’s 16th ranked scorer (14.3) and seventh best rebounder (7.5), is the lone returning starter for the Yellowjackets who earned the sixth and final seed in the conference playoffs.

Hudson earned honorable mention all-league honors.

Four other lettermen also return led by guard Marc Matthews (6-2, So., Sierra Vista, AZ – Buena), who averaged 7.5 points and 3.3 rebounds and made 28 treys.

Also back are forwards Tyler Nelson (6-7, Sr., Roosevelt, UT) and Luke Adams (6-7, So., Anchorage, AK - Dimond) and guard Jace Anderson (5-10, So., Whitewater, MT).

Nelson scored 80 points and had 83 rebounds in 25 contests, while Anderson and Adams, contributed 36 and eight points, respectively, in limited playing time.

Four transfers including Antoine Hosley (6-0, Sr., Portland, OR) from Utah Valley State who averaged 6.1 points in 28 games for the Division I school, will bolster the team.

Also among the newcomers for coach Jamie Stevens is Momir Gataric (6-5, Jr., Sunnyvale, CA) who earned all-conference junior college honors at West Valley (Calif.), averaging 19.2 points and 6.6 rebounds.

Another transfer is guard Gary Gordon (6-3, Jr., Philadelphia, PA) from Northwest (Wyo.) where he averaged 13.2 points and 5.2 rebounds.

Also available this winter will be forward Emmanuel Johnson (6-7, Jr., San Antonio, TX) who averaged eight points and five rebounds at Frank Phillips Junior College.

Head Coach
:  Greg Sparling, Central Washington '93 (322-211, 19 years)
Drew Harris, Jared Johnson
2013-14 Record
:  12-14
: 8-10, 6th-T
Returning Letter Winners
: 7 (6 from 2013-14)
Returning Starters (3)
:  Marc Rodgers (G, 6-1, So., 4.0 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 2.6 apg); Joey Roppo (G, 6-2, Jr., 3.8 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 17-57 3-pointers); Dom Williams (G, 5-11, Sr., 9.1 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 1.1 spg in 2012-13)
Other Returnees
:  Jordan Russell (G, 5-9, Jr., 9.2 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 31-93 3-pointers, 2.4 apg); Jalen Peake (G, 6-3, So., 4.9 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 24-68 3-pointers); Julian Vaughn (F, 6-4, Sr., 3.3 ppg, 3.1 rpg); Terry Dawn (G, 6-4, So., 1.9 ppg, 1.3 rpg)
: Gary Jacobs (G, 6-2, Jr., Las Vegas, NV – Pierce College); Joseph Stroud (F, 6-8, Jr., Seattle, WA – Highline CC); A.J. Maxwell (G, 5-9, Jr., Spanaway, WA – Centralia CC); Devin Matthews (G, 6-2, Jr., Las Vegas, NV – Pierce College); Caleb Dressler (F/C, 6-10, Fr., Vancouver, WA – University of Hawaii).

Team Outlook

The Wildcats graduated their top three scorers including Mark McLaughlin, who led Division II in scoring averaging 27.1 points per game.

Still seven lettermen do return, including 2012-13 starter Dom Williams (5-11, Sr., Tacoma, WA – Curtis), who averaged 9.1 points per game before sitting out last season.

Back from last year’s starting five for head coach Greg Sparling are guards Marc Rodgers (6-1, So., Los Angeles, CA - Cathedral) and Joey Roppo (6-2, Jr., Monroe, WA).

Rodgers averaged four points and 2.7 assists, while Roppo netted 3.8 points per game.

The top two returning scorers for the Wildcats came off the bench last year – guards Jordan Russell (5-9, Jr., Tacoma, WA - Lincoln) and Jalen Peake (6-3, So., Yakima, WA – West Valley)

Russell averaged 9.2 points and 2.4 assists; Peake contributed 4.9 points.

Also back are Julian Vaughn (6-4, Sr., Tacoma, WA – Curtis), who averaged 3.3 points and 3.1 rebounds, and Terry Dawn (6-4, So., Arlington, WA) who scored 44 points in 23 contests.

Three JC all-stars and a Division I redshirt will strength the Wildcats.

Guards Gary Jacobs (6-2, Jr., Las Vegas – Sierra Vista) and Devin Matthews (6-2, Jr., Las Vegas, NV – Durango) each earned first team NWAACC West Region all-conference honors at Pierce.

Jacobs scored 12.4 points and had 3.8 assists per game, while Matthews contributed 9.3 points and 7.7 assists per game at Pierce.

Joseph Stroud (6-8, Jr., Seattle, WA – Rainier Beach) earned second team West Region honors at Highline CC, averaging 12.2 points and 6.9 rebounds.

Caleb Dressler (6-10, Fr., Vancouver, WA - Evergreen), who is a former Greater St. Helens Most Valuable Player,  joins the Wildcats after redshirting at the University of Hawaii.

ALASKA NANOOKS  (Projected Rank: #7)
Head Coach
:  Mick Durham, Montana State ’79 (39-45, 3 years; Overall, 285-258, 19 years)
: Bobby Howard
2013-14 Record
:  18-10
: 12-6, 3rd
Returning Letter Winners
: 5
Returning Starters (1)
:  Joe Slocum (G, 6-3, Sr., 10.4 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 35-94 3-pointers, 4.1 apg, 2.1 spg)
Other Returnees
: Rashaad Allen (G, 6-1, Sr., 2.5 ppg,  0.8 rpg); John Renfro (F, 6-7, Jr., 1.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg); Cody Pierson (G, 6-1, Jr., 0.8 ppg, 0.7 rpg); Anthony Reese (G, 5-11, Sr., 2.5 ppg, 1.4 rpg),
Alex Duncan (G, 6-1, Jr., Boise, ID – Whatcom CC); Ruben Silvas (G, 6-3, Jr., Tucson, AZ – Tohono O’odham CC); Ashton Edwards (G, 6-1, Jr., Compton, CA – Long Beach CC); Kyle Tomlinson (F, 6-4, Jr., Mesa, AZ – Mesa CC); Adam Griffin (G, 6-1, Jr., Pacific Palisades, CA – Santa Monica); Eric Fongue (F, 6-6, Sr., Zurich, Switzerland – Whatcom CC); Almir Hadzisehovic (C, 6-8, Jr., Belgrade, Serbia  - Ohlone College); Isaac LaDines (C, 6-8, Jr., Arlington, WA – Skagit Valley)

Team Outlook

The Nanooks return just one starter – guard Joe Slocum (6-3, Sr., San Francisco, CA) - from last year’s team that finished third and advanced to the semifinals of the GNAC tournament before losing to Western Washington.

Slocum averaged 10.4 points and ranked second in the conference in steals, averaging two per game.

Four other players are back, but none averaged more than 2 ½ points per game for coach Mick Durham, who has 285 wins in 19 seasons as a head coach.

Guard Rashaad Allen (6-1, Sr., Fairfield, CA) had the most playing time of the group averaging 2.5 points and 11.2 minutes for UAF.  Anthony Reese (5-11, Sr., Everson, WA – Nooksack Valley) also averaged 2.5 points in 23 contests.

John Renfro (6-7, Jr., Fairbanks, AK – Southern Utah) and Cody Pierson (6-1, Jr., Twin Bridges, MT) each scored 21 in 14 and 25 games, respectively.

Durham added eight JC transfers including three who earned all-conference honors.

Ashton Edwards (6-1, Jr., Compton, CA) was a first team selection at Long Beach City averaging 19.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists.

Two of the recruits were NWAACC second team selections at Whatcom CC – guard Alex Duncan (6-1, Jr., Boise, ID) where he averaged 11.7 points, 6.6 rebounds and 4.6 assists, and Eric Fongue (6-6, Sr., Zurich, Switzerland) who averaged 11.4 points and 5.7 rebounds.

Three others averaged in double figures at the JC level – guard Ruben Silvas (6-3, Jr., Tucson, AZ), guard Adam Griffin (6-1, Jr., Pacific Palisades, CA) and center Almir Hadzisehovic (6-8, Jr., Belgrade, Serbia).

Silvas averaged 11.6 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.1 steals at Tohono O’odham in Arizona.  Griffin chipped in with 10.4 points and 2.7 assists at Santa Monica CC and Hadzisehovic scored 10.1 per game at Ohlone College.

NW NAZARENE CRUSADERS (Projected Rank: #8)
Head Coach:
  Dave Daniels, Colorado Christian ‘95 (32-46, 3 years; Overall, 112-141, 9 years)
  Rye Oleson, Kyle Joseph
2013-14 Record:
  5-13, 9th
Returning Letter Winners:
Returning Starters (2):
Kevin Rima (F, 6-7, Sr., 14.8 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 31 blocks, HM GNAC); Matyas Hering (G, 6-3, Sr., 6.1 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 28-84 3-pointers, 2.0 apg)
Other Returnees:
  Pol Olivier (G, 6-2, So., 3.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 15-43 3-pointers)
:  Mike Wright (G, 6-1, Jr., Burlington, Ont – University of Waterloo); Bouna N’Diaye (G, 6-6, So., Bergen, Norway – Barry); Erik Kinney (F, 6-4, Jr., Sacramento, CA – Cal State Bakersfield); Parris Massey (F, 6-7, Jr., Boston, Mass. – UMass Lowell); Aubrey Ball (G, 6-3, Sr., Carrollton, TX – Central Arkansas); Todd Helgeson (F, 6-8, Jr., Kaysville, UT – Utah State Eastern JC)

Team Outlook

Forward Kevin Rima (6-6, Sr., Fairbanks, AK – Hutchinson) is one of three returning players this winter for fourth-year Northwest Nazarene head coach Dave Daniels.

Rima earned honorable mention GNAC honors last winter averaging 14.8 points.  He led the Crusaders and ranked fourth in the GNAC in both  rebounding (7.7) and blocked shots (31).  His scoring average ranked 14th in the conference.

The only other returning players are Matyas Hering (6-3, Sr., Prague, Czech Republic) and Pol Olivier (6-2, So., Tarragona, Spain).

Hering started 17 games and averaged 6.1 points and two assists, while Olivier averaged 3.3 points and had 41 rebounds and 39 assists in 26 games.

Daniels, however, had an outstanding recruiting year adding three Division I players.  Also available are a pair of redshirts from last season.

Guard Mike Wright (6-1, Jr., Burlington, Ontario), who averaged 15.2 points at the University of Waterloo in 2011-12, redshirted at NNU last season and has two years of eligibility remaining.

Bouna N’Diaye (6-6, So., Bergen, Norway) is also available after redshirting.  He previously played one season at Division II Barry, scoring 26 points in 14 games.

Division I transfers include forward Erik Kinney (6-4, Jr., Sacramento, CA) from Cal State Bakersfield, forward Parris Massey (6-7, Jr., Boston, MA) from UMass – Lowell and guard Aubrey Ball (6-3, Sr., Carrollton, TX) from Central Arkansas.

Kinney played in 55 games and had 166 points and  154 rebounds in two seasons at Bakersfield.  Massey has career totals of 116 points and 143 rebounds in 67 games at UMass Lowell and Ball averaged 5.4 points in 28 games at Central Arkansas.

SIMON FRASER CLAN  (Projected Rank: #9)
Head Coach
:  James Blake, Victoria ’00 (27-75, 4 years)
: Matt McKay
Director of Basketball Operations:
Ryan Tanabe
2013-14 Record
:  10-16
: 3-15, 10th
Returning Letter Winners
:  4
Returning Starter (2)
:   Sango Niang (G, 6-0, Sr., 16.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 41-101 3-pointers, 5.6 apg, 1.1 spg, 2nd team GNAC); Justin Cole (G, 6-4, Sr., 13.0 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 51-133 3-pointers, 1.5 spg)
Other Returnees
:   Gibran Sewani (F, 6-7, So., 3.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg); Daniel Deflorimonte (G, 6-0, Sr., 5.8 ppg, 2.1 rpg in 10 games in 2011-12)
: Roderick Evans-Taylor (G/F, 6-5, Jr., Uplands, CA – Chaffey CC); Michael Harper (G/F, 6-4, Jr., Melbourne, Australia – U. of Hawaii); Alex Klocek (G, 6-4, Jr., Coquitlam, BC – Brandon Univ.); Pape Seck (F, 6-10, Jr., Dakar, Senegal – Chaffey CC); Hidde Vos (G, 6-4, So., Barendrecht, Netherlands – Cal State-Fullerton); Adam Westfall (G, 6-5, So., Gresham, OR – Chemeketa)

Team Outlook

Guards Sango Niang (6-0, Sr., Paris, France) and Justin Cole (6-4, Sr., Los Angeles, CA) are back this season to lead Simon Fraser. 

Niang was the GNAC’s seventh leading scorer last season when he led the Clan in scoring (16.3) and assists (5.6).  His assist average ranked third in the conference.

Cole averaged 13.0 points per game and was the team’s top three-pointer shooter, making 51 of 133.

Two other veteran players also return – forward Gibran Sewani (6-7, So., Torrance, CA – South Torrance) and guard Daniel Deflorimonte (6-5, Jr., Toronto, ON – St. Joseph’s).

Sewani scored 20 points in six games a year ago, while Deflorimonte scored 62 points in 13 games during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.

Both Niang and Cole played at Chaffey Community College in California before joining the Clan.

Coach James Blake has added two more players from that school this year – guard/forward Roderick Evans-Taylor (6-5, Jr., Uplands, CA) and forward Pape Seek (6-10, Jr., Dakar, Senegal).  Evans-Taylor averaged 7.2 points for Chaffey last season.

Other newcomers this winter for SFU include guard/forward Michael Harper (6-4, Jr., Melbourne, Australia), who scored 12 points in 21 seasons at the University of Hawaii and  guard Alex Klocek (6-4, Jr., Coquitlam, BC) who previously played at the University of Brandon.

Guard Hidde Vos (6-4, So., Baremdrecht, Netherlands) joins the Clan after redshirting at Cal State Fullerton.  Guard Adam Westfall (6-5, So., Gresham, OR) averaged 10 points per game at Chemeketa where he earned academic all-conference honors.

SAINT MARTIN’S SAINTS  (Projected Rank: 9th)
Head Coach
:  Michael Ostlund, Weber State ‘91 (9-17, 1 year)
:  Joseph Petschl, Amethe Gueye
2013-14 Record
:  9-17
: 6-12, 8th
Returning Letter Winners
:  7
Returning Starters (3)
:   Ryan Rogers (F, 6-4, Sr., 13.5 ppg, 5.9 rpg, 34-86 3-pointers); Riley Carel (G, 6-2, Sr., 9.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 22-91 3-pointers, 3.4 apg, 1.6 spg); Tyler Copp (G, 6-2, So., 6.0 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 34-94 3-pointers, 2.0 apg)
Other Returnees
: Isaac Bianchini (G, 6-0, So., 6.4 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 48-121 3-pointers); Will Bond (G, 6-4, Sr., 5.4 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 16-53 3-pointers); Lucas Shannon (F, 6-8, Jr., 5.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 22 blocks); Tyler Idowu (F, 6-5, Sr., 3.2 ppg, 2.8)
: Victor Ieronymides (F, 6-6, Fr., Cypress, TX – Fordham); Ryan Hintze (F, 6-6, Jr., Payson, AZ – Mesa CC)

Team Outlook

Forward Ryan Rogers (6-4, Sr., Auburn, WA – Auburn-Riverside) is one of three starters and seven letter winners back this winter for second-year head coach Michael Ostlund.

Last year Rogers ranked 18th in scoring (13.5) and 11th in rebounding (5.9) in the GNAC. 

Also back for the Saints are guards Riley Carel (6-2, Sr., Enumclaw, WA) and Tyler Copp (6-2, So., Camas, WA).  Carel averaged 9.2 points, 4.0 rebounds.  He also averaged 3.4 assists and 1.6 steals.

Copp contributed six points per game and had 52 assists.

Four other lettermen are back led by guard Isaac Bianchini (6-0, So., Sedro Woolley, WA) who averaged 6.4 points.  Most of his points came from the three-point line where he made 48 of 121.  He was just 5-of-21 inside the arc.

Guard Will Bond (6-4, Sr., Troutdale, OR – Portland’s Central Catholic) and forwards Lucas Shannon (6-8, Jr., Sammamish, WA - Skyline) and forward Tyler Idowu (6-5, Sr., Oakland, CA - Rodriguez) also return for another season.

Bond averaged 5.4 points, while Shannon netted five points per game and Idowu contributed 35 points in 11 games,

The newcomers include Ryan Hintze (6-6, Jr., Payson, AZ) who played 31 games at Mesa CC and five freshmen.

One of the freshman – Victor Ieronymides (6-6, Fr., Cypress, TX – Oak Hill Academy) redshirted one year at Division I Fordham.

Another freshman is Brent Counts (6-9, Salem, OR – Blanchet) who is the grandson of former Olympian and NBA player Mel Counts.