Men's Basketball: Final Exams Take Center Stage
Seattle Pacific's Cory Hutsen needs 15 more points to join the 1,000-point club.
Seattle Pacific's Cory Hutsen needs 15 more points to join the 1,000-point club.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

PORTLAND, Ore. -  With final exams taking center stage, it's a light week for Great Northwest Athletic Conference basketball teams this week.

Only four games which match GNAC teams against Division II schools are on the schedule, all in the Alaska Anchorage Seawolf Jamboree.

Undefeated BYU-Hawaii (6-0) invades the Alaska Airline Center Friday to  take on the Alaska Nanooks (2-5) at 6 p.m. 

The second tournament game will match Humboldt State (3-4) and Alaska Anchorage (3-5) at 8 p.m.

The teams switch opponents Saturday with Humboldt playing Alaska at 5 p.m. and BYU-Hawaii facing Alaska Anchorage at 7 p.m.

BYU-Hawaii already has two wins against GNAC teams this year defeating both Central Washington and Seattle Pacific in November at Laie, Hawaii.

The rest of this week’s schedule sends GNAC teams up against non-Division II squads.

On Thursday, Northwest Nazarene plays an exhibition at Boise State.  On Friday, Central Washington hosts Quest, B.C. and Seattle Pacific entertains Division III George Fox.

On Saturday Northwest Nazarene plays an exhibition at Idaho State and Western Oregon goes for its seventh win in a row against Camosun (B.C.) at Monmouth.

Following finals, a heavy week of games awaits most GNAC teams with two games scheduled on Monday, three on Tuesday, three on Wednesday, five on Thursday, three on Friday and five on Saturday.

Seven of the games will match GNAC teams against West Region opponents, including five with PacWest teams and two with CCAA opponents.

GNAC teams are currently 11-15 against the PacWest and 1-4 against the CCAA.

Western Oregon Ranked 4th in D2SIDA Region Poll

A six-game win streak has earned Western Oregon a No. 6 rank in this week’s D2SIDA West Regional men’s basketball poll.

PacWest teams – BYU-Hawaii (1st), Azusa Pacific (2nd) and Cal Baptist (3rd) - hold down the first three positions in the weekly regional poll. 

The poll is unofficial.   The NCAA official regional poll, which determines the playoff qualifiers will be held starting in mid-February.

Central Washington is the only other GNAC team ranked in the poll coming in at No. 9.  Simon Fraser (13th overall) and Seattle Pacific (14th) are among “others receiving votes.”

West Regional – 1. BYU-Hawaii (6-0); 2. Azusa Pacific (8-1); 3. Cal Baptist (6-1); 4. Western Oregon (7-2); 5. Cal Poly Pomona (5-2); 6. Point Loma (5-1); 7. Chico State (5-2) and Sonoma State (4-1); 9. Central Washington (5-2); 10. Chaminade (3-4).

Vikings, Clan Set GNAC Scoring Record

Simon Fraser and Western Washington combined for a GNAC record 240 points as the Clan outscored the Vikings 122-118 Saturday in their conference opener at Burnaby.

The old GNAC record was 234 points in a 125-109 Central Washington win over Saint Martin’s on March 5, 2005.

There were some huge individual performances in the contest.   Jaamon Echols led WWU with 31 points and Anye Turner had 27 points and 20 rebounds, his second career 20-rebound game and just the 14th in GNAC history.  Ricardo Maxwell had 23 points.

Sango Niang led the Clan with 29 points and seven assists and Justin Cole had 20.

Niang currently ranks 17th in Division II in scoring (23.4), third in assists (7.4) and fourth in steals (3.25) though he had none in Saturday’s game.

Turner had three blocks and ranks fifth in Division II averaging 3.5.  Joseph Stroud of Central Washington ranks seventh nationally in blocks, averaging 2.86.

In team categories, Simon Fraser ranks first in scoring (126.1), three-pointers made (15.1), assists (22.5), steals (18.8) and turnover margin (13.0).

Western Washington ranks fourth in blocks (6.5) and 10th in rebounding (11.4) and scoring (92.8) and Western Oregon ranks eighth in free throw percentage (79.0).

GNAC Men’s Basketball Player  of the Week

Dom Williams, Central Washington (G, 5-11, Sr., Tacoma, WA – Curtis & Tacoma CC) scored 50 points and also had 10 assists and just one turnover in wins over Montana State Billings and defending GNAC champion Seattle Pacific. He had a career-high 31 points and five assists in a 88-79 win over MSUB Thursday, connecting on 11 of 20 shots, including 5-of-7 three-pointers. Williams then added 19 points and five assists in a 73-67 victory against SPU Saturday, converting on 4-of-7 three-point shots.  The win snapped a four-game CWU losing streak to the Falcons.  For the week, Williams made 18-of-37 shots (48.6 percent), including 9-of-14 three-pointers.  He also converted on 5-of-6 foul shots.

Team Notes

Alaska: Ashton Edwards scored 21 of his 32 points in single-digit losses at Western Oregon and Saint Martin’s, from beyond the arc, making 7-of-17 three-pointers.  Almir Hadzisehovic netted 22 points and Ruben Silvas had 21 points and a team-high 14 rebounds.

Alaska Anchorage: Brian McGill had team-highs of 36 points and 10 assists and Kalidou Diouf had 32 points and 12 rebounds as the Seawolves split two road contests.  UAA shot .846 from the foul line (33-of-39) as McGill made 10-of-11 and Diouf was a perfect 6-of-6.  Derrick Fain converted on 6-of-7.

Central Washington: Dom Williams accounted for 31.1 percent of the Wildcats’ points (50-of-161) in wins over MSU Billings and Seattle Pacific and contributed to least 20 more (with 10 assists).  The Wildcats, who outscored their opponents 54-21 from the arc, also got 28 points from Gary Jacobs. 

Montana State Billings: Austin Hudson scored 30 points and had 12 rebounds in road losses at Central Washington and Northwest Nazarene.  The Yellowjackets were also led by Antoine Hosley with 28 points,

Northwest Nazarene:  Kevin Rima scored 25 points and also had 15 rebounds as the Crusaders split their first two conference games.  Mike Wright had 21 points, making 5-of-11 three-pointers,  and a team-best six assists.

Saint Martin’s:  Freshman Trey Ingram led the Saints with  32 points, connecting on 6-of-10 three-point shots, as the Saints split two games, losing in overtime to Alaska Anchorage before posting a three-point win over Alaska.  The Saints outshot their opponents .442 to .395 including .396 to .273 from the three-point line.

Seattle Pacific:  Cory Hutsen needs 15 more points to become the 59th member of the GNAC 1000-Point Club.  Hutsen scored 37 points in two games last week to increase his career total to 985.  He currently ranks 62nd in GNAC history.  Matt Borton had 32 points and 19 rebounds as the Falcons split two contests.

Simon Fraser:  The Clan scored 71 first-half points in a defeating Western Washington for the first time since the 1997-98 season.  The Vikings had won the last 12 meetings with SFU, nine since SFU became a NCAA member.  Sango Niang led Simon Fraser with 29 points and seven assists.  Justin Cole scored 20 points and Roderick Evans-Taylor had 18.

Western Oregon: The Wolves dominated the backboards in running their win streak to six with home wins over Alaska and  Alaska Anchorage.  WOU had a 71-54 rebounding advantage and also outshot their two opponents .483 to .445.  Andy Avgi had 38 points, while Julian Nichols and Jordan Wiley netted 23 and 20 points each.  Nichols also had 11 assists.  Lewis Thomas had a near triple-double against Alaska finishing with nine points, nine assists and nine rebounds.

Western Washington:  Anye Turner had 27 points and 20 rebounds in a 122-118 road loss at Simon Fraser.  It’s the 14th 20-rebound game in GNAC history and Turner has had two of the last three.  In two games, including a 57-point win Quest, B.C., Turner had 35 points and 32 rebounds.  Three other players – Ricardo Maxwell (38), Jeffrey Parker (37) and Jaamon Echols (36) – scored more points.