Feb. 11, 2014
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - Working on a six-game victory string, the nationally ranked Western Washington University men's basketball team closes out a stretch of three road contests this week, traveling to Montana State University Billings on Thursday (7:30 p.m.) and to No.15 rated and conference-leading Seattle Pacific University on Saturday (7:30 p.m.) for a pair of Great Northwest Athletic Conference contests.
The Vikings, who moved back into the National Basketball Coaches Association/NCAA Division II Top 25 Poll this week at No. 24, are 16-4 overall and second in the GNAC standings at 10-2, one-half game behind leader Seattle Pacific (11-2, 20-4). Last week, they prevailed 84-83 at Simon Fraser. During their recent win streak, four of the triumphs have been by seven or fewer points.
The playing status of WWU starting forward Anye Turner, a junior, is indefinite after he dislocated the big toe on his right foot during the first half of the Simon Fraser game. Turner is averaging 10.0 points and 8.2 rebounds and has blocked 31 shots.
The Vikings may get a boost this week as freshman forward Joey Schreiber could return to action after missing seven games with facial fractures suffered in an 82-69 home win over Simon Fraser on Jan. 11.
Schreiber underwent surgery and has been fitted with a protective mask. He made 11 starts in his first 13 games, averaging 12.0 points.
Prior to its latest string of six victories, WWU lost four of six games after opening the season with eight wins.
Three of WWU's four losses this season have been to teams currently ranked among the top 25 nationally. They were to No.4 Tarleton State (19-1), No. 15 Seattle Pacific and No.17 Cal State San Bernardino (17-3).
WWU's biggest win of the season came at home on Nov. 30 over No.1 Metro State (20-1). MSUB, which has lost five of its last six games, is 9-12 overall and 5-8 in GNAC action.
SPU is 20-4 overall and atop the GNAC at 11-2. The Falcons, who host Simon Fraser on Thursday, are working on a nine-game winning streak and are 9-1 at home.
WWU's 76-60 loss to SPU at Bellingham on Jan. 15 snapped the Vikings' school-record 36-game home court victory string.
NCAA II AND GNAC STATS: WWU ranks fourth nationally among NCAA II schools in blocked shots per game at 5.9 and is sixth in total blocks with 118. The Vikings are seventh in 3-point field-goal percentage defense at 28.9 and 17th in scoring offense (86.8). WWU tops the GNAC in 3-point percentage defense (28.9), field-goal percentage defense (43.5), blocks (5.9), rebounding margin (6.5) and offensive rebounds (13.7). The Vikings are second in scoring offense (86.8).
WOODWORTH: Senior guard Richard Woodworth, who scored a career-high 33 points in the victory at Simon Fraser, is averaging 16.9 points per game and is shooting a team-best 44.8 percent (30-of-67) from 3-point range and 85.0 percent (91-of-107) at the free throw line. He became the 24th Viking to reach 1,000 points in a career while scoring 24 against Alaska Anchorage on Jan. 2. His current total of 1,133 ranks 17th and he is 17th in assists at 305.
Woodworth scored 30 points, 24 in the second half, versus Cal State San Bernardino on Dec. 21, and he had 28 at Central Washington on Jan. 23
BRAGG: Senior center Austin Bragg ranks among the top five in the GNAC in five categories. He leads in rebounds at 9.2 per game, is second in blocks at 1.9 and offensive rebounds at 3.2, and fifth in field-goal percentage at 58.7 (121-of-206) and scoring at 17.1.
On Feb. 1 in a home victory over Alaska Anchorage, Bragg had just the second triple-double in school history and only the third in GNAC history, finishing with 13 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists. He tops the GNAC in double-doubles this season with nine after leading the conference last year with eight.
Bragg has earned conference POW honors twice this season and three times during his two-year career at WWU after transferring from Clark CC. His first POW honor this season was when he had 20 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks in a win over nationally No.1-ranked Metro State on Nov. 30, and his second award came after the Vikings swept a two-game home stand with Alaska Fairbanks and Alaska Anchorage.
Bragg has shot 50 percent or better from the floor 19 times this season. In WWU's win over Simon Fraser on Jan. 11, Bragg had 30 points and 17 rebounds, both career highs.
TURNER: Junior forward Anye Turner ranks second among GNAC leaders in blocks at 1.9 per game, third in rebounds at 8.2, sixth in field-goal shooting at 57.6 (76-of-132) and eighth in steals at 1.4.
On the season, he is averaging 10.0 points and has had four double-doubles.
Turner grabbed 20 rebounds in a win over Thompson Rivers on Dec. 17, tying the most by a WWU player since 2003 and five short of the school record.
Feb. 13 (Thu.) at Montana State Billings* (Billings, MT - 7:30 p.m.) Feb. 15 (Sat.) at Seattle Pacific*# (Seattle, WA - 7:30 p.m.) Feb. 20 (Thu.) NORTHWEST NAZARENE*# (Carver Gym - 7 p.m.) Feb. 22 (Sat.) CENTRAL WASHINGTON*#@ (Carver Gym - 7 p.m.) Feb. 27 (Thu.) at Saint Martin's*# (Lacey, WA - 7 p.m.) March 1 (Sat.) at Western Oregon* (Monmouth, OR - 3 p.m.)
*Great Northwest Athletic Conference contest @televised on ROOT Sports (Comcast Channel 30, DirecTV: Channel 687, Dish Network: Channel 426) #broadcast on KBAI Radio (930 AM) and on internet at wwuvikings.com %broadcast on KPUG Radio (1170 AM) and on internet at wwuvikings.com
MONTANA STATE BILLINGS: The Yellowjackets are 9-12 overall and 5-8 in GNAC play, losing five of their last six games after an 8-7 start. They have made three consecutive GNAC tournament appearances, winning the title in 2012. The top returnee for coach Jamie Stevens (3rd year, 43-38) is 5-11 senior guard Kalob Hatcher (12.5 ppg, 7.2 apg, .404 3-pt. Pct. - 21-of-52), an honorable mention GNAC all-star who leads the conference and ranks sixth nationally in assists. Also back is 6-2 senior guard Devon Wallace (7.4 ppg). Three talented transfers are 6-6 senior forward Jonathan Mesghna (14.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg) from NCAA I Maine, 6-7 junior forward Austin Hudson (13.7 ppg, 7.0 rpg, .605 FG Pct.) from Central Wyoming and 6-7 junior forward Connor Donaldson (9.2 ppg) from Everett CC where he was a NWAACC Northern Region all-star. WWU holds a 17-3 series advantage, winning 84-71 at Bellingham on Jan. 18.
SEATTLE PACIFIC: The Falcons, who have made nine straight NCAA tournament appearances, the longest current string of any Division II school, are ranked No.15 nationally, 20-4 overall (Feb. 13 host Simon Fraser) and 11-2 in GNAC action. They lead the GNAC in field goal shooting (51.0 percent, 9th nationally) and 3-point accuracy (43.0, 4th nationally). SPU is led by Pre-season GNAC Player of the Year and first-team GNAC all-star 6-2 senior guard David Downs (18.9 ppg, 4.9 apg, 51.6 FG Pct., 86.7 FT Pct., 48.8 3-pt. Pct., 61-of-125, 8th nationally), GNAC Defensive Player of the Year 6-4 junior guard Riley Stockton (7.8 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 3.8 apg, 1.3 spg), and second-team GNAC all-star 6-8 senior forward Patrick Simon (17.2 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 52.2 3-pt. Pct., 60-of-115, 2nd nationally). Two other solid returnees are 6-8 junior center Cory Hutsen (11.5 ppg, 52.6 FG Pct.) and 6-5 sophomore forward Mitch Penner (9.6 ppg, 56.9 FG Pct.). A top newcomer for coach Ryan Looney (5th year, 112-32; 10th overall, 207-87) is 6-5 junior forward Matt Borton (7.3 ppg, 4.9 rpg), a transfer from NCAA I Idaho. Last year, SPU finished 27-4, won the GNAC Tournament title and reached the West Regional final for the second straight season where it again lost to WWU. WWU trails 78-51 in the series, but has won six of the last eight meetings. SPU won 76-60 at Bellingham on Jan. 15, snapping the Vikings' school-record 36-game home court winning streak. SPU was the preseason favorite of the GNAC coaches and ranked No.1 nationally in The Sporting News pre-season ranking and No.3 in the Division II Bulletin pre-season rating.
SCHREIBER EXPECTED TO RETURN: Redshirt freshman forward Joey Schreiber, who has been out of action since mid-January, is expected to return sometime in the next two weeks. He has been fitted with a protective mask after undergoing surgery for facial fractures suffered in an 82-69 win over Simon Fraser on Jan. 11. Schreiber was injured just 23 seconds into the second half of that contest, catching an inadvertent elbow from a SFU player while going for a rebound. He sustained fractures to the eye socket and sinus area on the right side of his face. The 6-foot-7, 200-pound Schreiber had started 11 of WWU's 13 games up to that time. He was averaging 12.0 points a game, shooting 50.5 percent (55-of-109) from the field, including 40.4 percent (19-of-47) from 3-point range. Schreiber has had eight double-figure scoring games with a high of 23 points in a 67-66 win over Western Oregon on Dec. 5.
FREE THROW FOLLIES: WWU is shooting 68.0 percent at the free-throw line this season, the only team in the GNAC under 70 percent. But the Vikings have had some exceptional games at the charity stripe, hitting 87.0 percent (20-of-23) at Northwest Nazarene, 81.3 percent (26-of-32) against Thompson Rivers, 79.5 percent (35-of-44) at Alaska Anchorage, 78.1 percent (25-of-32) vs. Tarleton State and 77.1 percent (27-of-35) vs. Montana State Billings.
NABC TOP 25 POLL: After a three-week absence, WWU returned to the NABC/NCAA II Top 25 Poll on Tuesday at No.24. On Jan. 21, WWU fell out of the ranking for the first time since Jan. 10, 2012. That snapped a school-record streak of 31national poll appearances.
SEASON HIGHLIGHTS TO DATE:
Nov. 19 - Tied school record with 19-point, second-half comeback in 80-74 win over BYU Hawaii.
Nov. 30 - Defeated nationally No.1-ranked Metro State, 72-69, a program first over a top-ranked opponent.
Dec. 5 - Woodworth hit two free throws with 1.9 seconds remaining as WWU began GNAC play with a 67-66 win over Western Oregon
Dec. 14 - School record set for combined points with 228 in 140-88 win over Multnomah. WWU fell one short of school record for most points in a game (141-52 vs. Northwest on Feb. 3, 1989, and just shy of mark for best field-goal percentage (66.7, 58-87), set on Jan. 3, 1989 (69.8 vs. Grace IN)
Dec. 17 - Turner grabbed 20 rebounds, most by a Viking player since 2003, and five shy of the school record in 99-74 victory over Thompson Rivers BC.
Jan. 2 - Woodworth reaches 1,000-point mark in career scoring with 24 points and Bragg had game highs of 25 points and 12 rebounds in 104-89 win at Alaska Anchorage.
Jan. 11 - Bragg and Turner combined for 52 points, 32 rebounds and five blocked shots in 82-69 win over Simon Fraser.
Jan. 30 - WWU defeats Alaska Fairbanks, 53-51, the fewest points by the Vikings in a win since a 53-47 victory over Lewis-Clark State on Feb. 22, 1983, and a 47-43 triumph over Montana Tech on Jan. 2, 1981.
Feb. 1 - Bragg posted just the second triple-double (13 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists) in school history and WWU made 16-of-27 3-pointers (59.3 percent) in a 99-76 win over Alaska Anchorage.
Feb. 8 - Woodworth scored a career-high 33 points in a 84-83 win at Simon Fraser.
ROOT SPORTS: Three WWU home games are being televised live on ROOT Sports (Comcast Channel 30) this season. They include Seattle Pacific on Jan. 15, Alaska Anchorage on Feb. 1 and versus Central Washington on Feb. 22. ROOT Sports is the home of the Seattle Mariners, Seattle Seahawks and Portland Timbers, among numerous other professional and collegiate sports teams in the Pacific Northwest. Its scope covers Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and Alaska, and the ROOT SPORTS regional networks combine to reach nine million homes across 18 states.
THREE-DOT NOTES: WWU's 53 points scored against Alaska Fairbanks (53-51) on Jan. 20 were the fewest by the Vikings in a win since a 53-47 victory over Lewis-Clark State on Feb. 22, 1983; and a 47-43 triumph over Montana Tech on Jan. 2, 1981... WWU is 12-1 at home this season, and has won 39 of its last 40 games at Carver Gym. The Vikings had a school-record 36-game home win streak snapped by Seattle Pacific, 76-60, on Jan. 15. Their biggest win at Carver Gym this season was 72-69 over then No.1-ranked Metro State CO on Nov. 30 ... WWU was named the GNAC Team of the Week for Nov. 24-30 with a 72-69 win over top-ranked Metro State, and Jan. 26-Feb. 1 for a home sweep of Alaska Fairbanks and Alaska Anchorage.
UNMATCHED SUCCESS: WWU won the NCAA II national championship in 2012 and reached the national semifinals in 2013, posting back-to-back 31-win seasons. The Vikings have captured the last two regular-season GNAC titles, winning 33 of 36 conference games during that span. Last season, they won their first 24 games overall and finished 17-1 in league play, the best record in GNAC history.
SEEK THIRD STRAIGHT WEST REGIONAL TITLE: WWU is looking to become the first team since 1994 to win three straight West Regional titles, Cal State Bakersfield completing a five-year string that season. The only other team to win three consecutive West Region championships was UC Riverside from 1973 to 1975.
PRE-SEASON ACCOLADES: Bragg and Woodworth were pre-season GNAC all-conference picks ... WWU ranked ninth in The Sporting News Pre-season NCAA II Top 10, No.10 in the NABC Pre-season Top 25 and No.17 in the Division II Bulletin Pre-season Top 25 ... The Vikings were picked third in the GNAC Pre-season Coaches Poll, behind Seattle Pacific and Alaska Anchorage. They were not the pre-season choice in either of the last two seasons, but went on to win the national championship in 2012 and reach the national semifinals in 2013.
COACH DOMINGUEZ: Tony Dominguez (2nd year, 47-7, 87.0 percent) directed the Vikings to a 31-3 record in 2012-13, GNAC regular-season and West Regional titles, and the NCAA II national semifinals. He became the first rookie coach in NCAA II history to win his first 24 games. Dominguez was a finalist for Clarence "Big House" Gaines National Coach of the Year honors and shared the GNAC Coach of the Year award. Previously, he was an associate head coach for two seasons and an assistant 17 years overall, all at WWU. During that stretch, the Vikings posted a 317-165 (.658) record, making six regional appearances and winning five conference championships. WWU took the NCAA II national crown in 2012, winning a school record 31 games, and reached the national semifinals in 2001.
RADIO BROADCASTS: Selected WWU games are being broadcast this season on KBAI Radio (930 AM) and KPUG Radio (1170 AM) with Doug Lange handling the play-by-play and Mark Scholten providing the color commentary. They also can be heard on the internet at www.wwuvikings.com.
ON THE WEB: All Viking home games are being video streamed live and are available free at http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/wwu.portal#. For up-to-date statistics, box scores of every game, records, stories, etc., see the WWU Athletic web page at www.wwuvikings.com. Up-to-date league standings and statistics can be found on the Great Northwest Athletic Conference web page at www.gnacsports.com.
PROBABLE WWU STARTERS & TOP RESERVES:
G Richard Woodworth, 6-3, ***Sr., Bellevue, WA/Newport G Robert Harris Jr., 5-10, Sr., TR, Kent, WA/Rainier Beach/ Eastern Arizona CC/Idaho C Austin Bragg, 6-9, *Sr., Longview, WA/Mark Morris/Clark CC F Anye Turner, 6-7, *Jr., Tumwater, WA/Black Hills/South Puget SoundCC F Jeffrey Parker, 6-6, R-Fr., Richmond, CA/Salesian
F Colby Mitchell, 6-7, Jr., JC, Chugiak, AK/Chugiak/Mount Hood CC G Dana Abe, 6-4, R-Fr., Seattle, WA/O'Dea G Alfred Davis, 6-0, *Sr., Tacoma, WA/Lincoln/Pierce CC F Robert Oliver, 6-4, *Jr., Federal Way, WA/Decatur F Joey Schreiber, 6-7, R-Fr., Renton, WA/Eastside Catholic G Mark Hopkins, 6-3, Jr., JC, San Antonio, TX/Randolph/Temple JC/ Schreiner G Dane Thorpe, 6-4, ***Sr., Bellingham, WA/Sehome C Jordan Mosby-Barker, 6-9, Jr., JC, Portland, OR/Parkrose/Clackamas CC *letters
RECENT GAME SUMMARY:
Feb. 8 - WWU 84, Simon Fraser 83 at Burnaby, B.C.
Woodworth scored a career-high 33 points and had a pair of key assists late in the contest, leading WWU to an 84-83 victory over Simon Fraser in a GNAC game at West Gym. Bragg had 16 points for WWU and Parker added 14. SFU fell to 9-11 overall and remained at the bottom of the GNAC at 2-10 with its 10th loss in 13 games. Guard Sango Niang led five Clan players in double figures with 20 points. SFU had a 73-70 lead with under three minutes left, but Bragg was fouled, and a technical foul on the SFU bench gave the Vikings four free throws. Woodworth hit the first two, then Bragg made one of two, tying the score at 73-73. On the next two WWU possessions, Woodworth fed Oliver for a reverse layin off a backdoor cut, then set up Bragg for a dunk off a pick-and-roll screen, putting the Vikings up for good, 77-73, with 1:15 to go. SFU did have two late chances to tie. With WWU up 81-78, Niang hit a driving bank shot and was fouled with 15 seconds left. He missed the free throw for the potential tie. Parker then hit 1-of-2 free throws at the other end. Niang then drove to the basket, but Bragg stepped in to draw a charging foul with five seconds left. Woodworth made two free throws to seal the victory before Niang hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the final margin. Woodworth was 8-of-18 from the field, including 4-of-8 on 3-pointers, and a perfect 13-of-13 on free throws, hitting six in the final minute. The game was tightly contested, with 13 ties and 18 lead changes, and no leads of more than seven points. SFU held a 43-41 advantage at halftime. Justin Cole had 18 points for the Clan. Taylor Dunn added 16, 13 in the first half. Ibrahim Appiah had 14 and David Gebru 13. Appiah had a game-high nine rebounds, and Niang had a game-best eight assists. The Vikings had a 34-30 advantage on the boards, with Mitchell grabbing a team-high eight.
Great Northwest Athletic Conference
2013-14 Men's Basketball Report Week 13 (Feb. 11, 2014)
Conference All W L W L H A N Seattle Pacific 11 2 20 4 9-1 5-3 6-0 Western Washington 10 2 16 4 12-1 4-1 0-2 Alaska Fairbanks 8 5 13 8 9-1 3-5 1-2 Central Washington 7 5 11 9 7-2 3-4 1-3 Western Oregon 6 7 13 10 9-4 2-5 2-1 Alaska Anchorage 6 7 13 11 8-7 3-3 2-1 MSU Billings 5 8 9 12 5-6 3-5 1-1 Saint Martin's 5 8 8 13 4-4 4-7 0-2 Northwest Nazarene 3 9 5 15 4-7 1-7 0-1 Simon Fraser 2 10 9 11 7-6 2-5 0-0
Region Records - Western Washington 13-3, Seattle Pacific 16-4, Alaska Fairbanks 11-8, Central Washington 9-7, Alaska Anchorage 9-8, Western Oregon 9-10, Saint Martin's 6-13, MSU Billings 6-11, Simon Fraser 5-11, Northwest Nazarene 3-13. Note: Region records include games against CCAA and PacWest teams and games versus non-West Region teams that count as regional contests under the NCAA "contiguous" state rule. Region records are one of the main criteria the NCAA uses in ranking teams in the regional poll.
Final Exhibition Records (Versus D1): Western Washington 2-0 (0-0); Western Oregon 1-0 (0-0); Seattle Pacific 1-1 (0-1); Alaska Fairbanks 1-1 (1-1); Saint Martin's 1-2 (0-2); Northwest Nazarene 0-2 (0-1); Alaska Anchorage 0-2 (0-1); Central Washington 0-2 (0-2); Simon Fraser 0-2 (0-2); MSU Billings 0-3 (0-1). Totals 6-15 (0-10). Note: Exhibition records do not include Alumni games.
LAST WEEK: Thursday - Seattle Pacific 88 at Alaska Anchorage 76; MSU Billings 74 at Alaska Fairbanks 88; Central Washington 59 at Western Oregon 71; Northwest Nazarene 73 at Saint Martin's 80 (ot). Saturday - Montana State Billings 75 at Alaska Anchorage 62; Seattle Pacific 67 at Alaska Fairbanks 56; Central Washington 77 at Saint Martin's 73; Western Washington 84 at Simon Fraser 83. (All games begin at 7 p.m. except where noted).
THIS WEEK: Monday - Northwest Nazarene 54 at Western Oregon 68. Thursday - Alaska Anchorage at Central Washington; Alaska Fairbanks at Northwest Nazarene; Western Washington at MSU Billings, 7:30 p.m.; Simon Fraser at Seattle Pacific, 7:30 p.m. Saturday - Alaska Anchorage at Northwest Nazarene; Alaska Fairbanks at Central Washington; Simon Fraser at MSU Billings, 7:30 p.m.; Western Oregon at Saint Martin's; Western Washington at Seattle Pacific, 7:30 p.m.
NCAA NATIONAL STATISTICS (Top 30; Through Feb. 9): Team: Scoring -17. Western Washington 86.9; 23. Alaska Anchorage 85.8. Scoring Defense - 17. Seattle Pacific 65.3; 21. Alaska Fairbanks 66.0. Scoring Margin - 16. Seattle Pacific 13.0. Field Goal PCT. - 9. Seattle Pacific 51.0; 26. Western Washington 49.4. Three-Pointers - 3. Alaska Anchorage 12.2; 11. Northwest Nazarene 10.1. Three-Point PCT. - 4. Seattle Pacific 43.0. Three-Point PCT. Defense - 7. Western Washington 28.9. Free Throw PCT. - 2. Alaska Anchorage 80.0; 22. Central Washington 76.0. Rebounds - 25. Western Washington 6.6. Assists - 17. Alaska Anchorage 17.8. Assist/TO Ratio - 1. Alaska Anchorage 2.11; 8. Seattle Pacific 1.61; 18. MSU Billings 1.43. Steals - 8. Western Oregon 9.5. Blocked Shots - 4. Western Washington 5.9. Fewest Turnovers - 1. Alaska Anchorage 8.4; 2. Seattle Pacific 9.0; 26. Alaska Fairbanks 10.7; 30. MSU Billings 10.9. Turnover Margin - 13. Alaska Fairbanks 4.6; 21. Alaska Anchorage 3.9. Fewest Fouls - 8. Alaska Fairbanks 15.1; 12. Seattle Pacific 15.8; 22. Northwest Nazarene 16.4. Individuals: Scoring - 1. Mark McLaughlin, CWU, 27.5; 18. Travis Thompson, UAA, 21.3. Field Goal PCT. - 6. Andrew Kelly, UAF, 67.5; 16. JB Pillard, CWU, 63.4. Three-Point FGs - 7. Travis Thompson, UAA, 3.58; 11. Kyle Fossman, UAA, 3.21. Three-Point PCT. - 2. Patrick Simon, SPU, 52.2; 8. David Downs, SPU, 48.8. Free Throw PCT. - 10. Travis Thompson, UAA, 90.1; 29. Evan Coulter, SMU, 88.0. Assists - 6. Kalob Hatcher, MSUB, 7.2; 19. Brian McGill, UAA, 6.0. Blocked Shots - 25. Kevin Davis, CWU, 2.33. Assist/TO Ratio - 5. Riley Stockton, SPU, 3.50; 22. Kalob Hatcher, MSUB, 2.90; 27. Kyle Fossman, UAA, 2.77. Double-Doubles - 21. Austin Bragg, WWU, 9.
DOUBLE DOUBLES (Through Feb. 10): 9 - Austin Bragg, WWU. 7 - JB Pillard, CWU. 6 - Ibrahim Appiah, SFU; Austin Hudson, MSUB. 5 -Teancum Stafford, UAA; Kevin Davis, CWU. 4 - Andrew Kelly, UAF; Anye Turner, WWU. 2 - Kevin Rima, NNU; Brian McGill, UAA; Mark McLaughlin, CWU; Kalob Hatcher, MSUB; Ryan Rogers, SMU; Matt Borton, SPU; Jonathan Mesghna, MSUB; Andy Avgi, WOU. 1 - Six with.
30-POINT GAMES (Through Feb. 10): 7 - Mark McLaughlin, CWU. 4 - Travis Thompson, UAA. 3 - Patrick Simon, SPU. 2 - Richard Woodworth, WWU; 1 - Austin Bragg, WWU, David Downs, SPU; Evan Coulter, SMU; Michael Loomis, NNU; Kevin Rima, NNU.
20-POINT GAMES (5 or more; Through Feb. 10): 16 - Mark McLaughlin, CWU. 15 - Travis Thompson, UAA. 12 - David Downs, SPU. 8 - Richard Woodworth, WWU. 7 - Brian McGill, UAA. 6 - Kyle Fossman, UAA; Ryan Rogers, SMU; Austin Hudson, MSUB; Austin Bragg, WWU. 5 - Patrick Simon, SPU; Evan Coulter, SMU.
10-REBOUND GAMES (4 or more; Through Feb. 10): 10 - Austin Bragg, WWU. 8 - JB Pillard, CWU; Teancum Stafford, UAA. 6 - Kevin Davis, CWU; Ibrahim Appiah, SFU; Anye Turner, WWU; Austin Hudson, MSUB. 5 - Andrew Kelly, UAF. 4 - Kevin Rima, NNU.
ALL-TOURNAMENT: CCA Division II Tipoff Classic (Nov. 8-10 at Anaheim) - *David Downs, SPU (MVP). *MVP was selected, but no all-tournament team chosen. UAA AT&T Jamboree (Nov. 15-16) - Travis Thompson, UAA (MVP); Kyle Fossman, UAA; Ronnie Baker, UAF; Brian McGill, UAA; Teancum Stanford, UAA. SPU Sodexo Tipoff (Nov. 15-16) - David Downs, SPU; Patrick Simon, SPU; Mark McLaughlin, CWU. UAF GCI Alaska Invitational (Nov. 21-23) - Ronnie Baker, UAF; Andrew Kelly, UAF. CWU GNAC/Pac West Challenge (Nov. 22-23) - David Downs, SPU (MVP), Mark McLaughlin, CWU; Patrick Simon, SPU. Carrs/Safeway Great Alaska Shootout (Nov. 27-30) - Travis Thompson, UAA. WOU Capital City Classic (Nov. 27-30) - Rodney Webster, WOU (MVP); Marwan Sarhan, WOU. Mac Martin Chico State (Nov. 29-30) - Patrick Simon, SPU; David Downs, SPU.
POLLS: NABC (Feb. 4) - 19. Seattle Pacific; 31. Western Washington. (Note: The first of three NCAA West Regional polls will be released Wednesday, Feb. 19. Qualifiers for the regional will be revealed on ncaa.com Sunday, Mar. 9 at 7:30 p.m. Pacific. The women's field will be unveiled at 7 p.m. Pacific).
ALL-REGION: CoSIDA Academic - David Downs, SPU (Accounting, Sr., 3.80, Kirkland, WA); Teancum Stafford, UAA (Psychology, Jr., 4.00, Auburn, WA); Riley Stockton, SPU (Business Administration, Jr., 3.87, Spokane, WA).
GNAC RED LION PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Austin Hudson, MSU Billings (F, 6-7, Jr., Salt Lake City, UT - Central Wyoming) scored 47 points and had 32 rebounds as the Yellowjackets split two games, earning their first win at Anchorage since Jan. 29, 1998 ... Hudson scored 24 points and had 22 rebounds, including a GNAC record 13 offensive caroms, in a 88-74 loss Thursday at Alaska Fairbanks. He then led MSUB to a 75-62 win against Alaska Anchorage scoring 23 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. In the two games, Hudson made 20 of 32 shots (62.5 percent) and also had four assists, four steals and two blocks. Half of his 32 rebounds came off the offensive glass. His 22 rebounds at UAF equal the second highest individual single-game total in GNAC history.
HONORABLE MENTION: Mitch Penner, Seattle Pacific (F, 6-5, So., Seattle, WA - Kennedy) came off the bench to lead the Falcons with 38 points as SPU ran its win streak to nine games with a pair of victories in Alaska. Penner missed just six shots, two from inside the arc (9-of-11), two from beyond the arc (4-of-6) and two from the foul line (8-of-10), He also had nine rebounds and a pair of assists ... Richard Woodworth, Western Washington (G, 6-3, Sr., Bellevue, WA - Newport) scored 33 points and also had four rebounds, four assists and five steals in a one-point road win at Simon Fraser. Woodworth was perfect from the foul line (13-of-13) and also made 4-of-8 three-pointers ... Mario Donaldson, Northwest Nazarene (G, Sr., Rockton, IL) scored 22 points and had seven rebounds and four steals in a 80-73 overtime loss at Saint Martin's. He added 12 more points and seven more rebounds in Monday's contest at Western Oregon.
MORE MENTIONABLES: Evan Coulter, Saint Martin's (G, 5-10, Sr., Mount Vernon, WA - Whatcom CC) scored 48 points and had nine rebounds, five assists and four steals as the Saints split two nail-bitters, winning in overtime against Northwest Nazarene (80-73) before dropping a four-point decision to Central Washington (77-73) ... Andy Avgi, Western Oregon (F, 6-6, So., Woodburn, OR) led the Wolves to a 12-point win over Central Washington scoring 18 points and also contributing six rebounds and three steals. Avgi also had a double-double (12 points, 11 rebounds), his second of the year, in Monday's win over NNU.
FROM THE RECORD BOOK: Patrick Simon of Seattle Pacific, who ranks second in Division II in three-point percentage this winter (52.2), also ranks second in GNAC history in career three-point percentage shooting 48.5 percent (126-260). Joel Ryman of Northwest Nazarene is the career leader shooting 48.6 (136-of-280) ... MSUB's Hudson eclipsed the old GNAC record for offensive rebounds of 12 set by Stanley Ratcliff of Western Oregon vs. Northwest Nazarene on Jan. 7, 2006. Hudson's 22 total rebounds equaled the second most in GNAC history. Blake Poole of Saint Martin's had 24 versus Western Oregon on Jan. 11, 2011 (in a ROOT Sports televised contest) and 22 against the Wolves on Jan. 31, 2009.
GNAC GAMES ON ROOT SPORTS: Eight regular-season GNAC games, including six men's contests were scheduled to be televised this winter on ROOT SPORTS. There is no game this week. The next ROOT SPORTS game will be Saturday, Feb. 22 when Western Washington hosts Central Washington. Brad Adam will do the play-by-play alongside Dave Harshman, who will handle the color commentary. (DirecTV channel 687 and Dish Network channel 426).
GNAC GAMES ON ROOT TV SCHEDULE (Talent): MEN: Wednesday, Jan. 15 - Seattle Pacific 76 at Western Washington 60 (Adam, Harshman). Thursday, Jan. 23 - Alaska Fairbanks 64 at Saint Martin's 47 (Adam, Harshman). Saturday, Feb. 1 - Alaska Anchorage 76 at Western Washington 99 (Adam, Harshman). Saturday, Feb. 8 - Northwest Nazarene at Western Oregon, postponed (Akamian, Harshman). Saturday, Feb. 22 - Central Washington at Western Washington, 7 p.m. (Adam, Harshman). Wednesday, Feb. 26 - Simon Fraser at Western Oregon, 7 p.m. (Akamian, Harshman). WOMEN: Saturday, Jan. 11 - MSU Billings 57 at Seattle Pacific 63 (Akamian, Harshman). Saturday, Mar. 1 - Simon Fraser at Western Washington, 3 p.m. (Adam, Harshman).
Alaska Anchorage: Kyle Fossman scored 34 points and also had nine assists in a pair of home losses. Brian McGill added 25 points and Travis Thompson had 22 points and 11 rebounds. UAA shot just 29.2 percent from the arc, making 19 of 65.
Alaska Fairbanks: Stefan Tica shot 70 percent from the floor (14-of-20) including 66.7 percent (6-of-9) on treys, as the Nanooks split two home games. Tica had 38 points. Andrew Kelly added 31 points on 13-of-19 shooting and also led UAF with 12 rebounds and six assists. Saturday's home loss to Seattle Pacific snapped UAF's 11-game home win streak.
Central Washington: Marc McLaughlin scored 41 points and had nine rebounds as the Wildcats split two road games. McLaughlin, who had made 25 of 45 three-pointers in his previous eight games, took just three shots from the arc, making one. CWU also got 31 points from Jordan Russell and 25 points and 24 rebounds from JB Pillard.
Montana State Billings: In addition to winning at Anchorage for the first time since 1998 (see Player of the Week notes), MSUB completed its first season series sweep of Alaska Anchorage since 1986-87 with Saturday's 75-62 win. In addition to Hudson (47 points, 32 rebounds), MSUB was led on the trip by Devon Wallace (26 points, 10 assists), Jonathan Mesghna (25 points, 12 rebounds), Marc Matthews (23 points) and Kalob Hatcher (15 points, 18 assists, 10 rebounds).
Northwest Nazarene: Mario Donaldson had 34 points, 14 rebounds and six steals in the Crusaders' extended trip (Thursday through Monday due so snow in the Monmouth area). Grayson Moore chipped in with 26 points and Kevin Rima had 19 points and 24 rebounds.
Saint Martin's: Evan Coulter and Ryan Rogers combined for 93 points in the Saints' two contests. Coulter had 48 on 15-of-27 shooting (2-of-6 three-pointers) from the floor and 16-of-18 from the foul line. Rogers pumped in 45 points and also had a team-high 17 rebounds. He made 5-of-9 three-pointers, but was just 8-of-25 inside the arc.
Seattle Pacific: The Falcons earned a sweep in Alaska for the second year in a row as four players averaged in double figures, including Mitch Penner (19.0), Patrick Simon (16.5), David Downs (13.0) and Matt Borton (12.5) ... Borton led SPU in rebounds (17) and Downs led in assists (11). The Falcons, who secured their fifth straight 20-win season for the first time in school history, outshot its two opponents 49.1 percent (52-of-106) to 39.5 (47-of-119) and outrebounded them 74-53.
Simon Fraser: The Clan shot 50 percent from the floor (30-of-60) in a one-point home loss to Western Washington (84-83). Sango Niang led SFU with 20 points, eight assists and four steals and also ranked second on the team to Ibrahim Appiah (9 rebounds) with seven caroms.
Western Oregon: Andy Avgi had 30 points and Rodney Webster had 21 leading the Wolves to two home wins. The Wolves shot just 37.9 percent from the floor (47-of-124) including 26.8 percent (11-of-41) on treys, but held their opponents to percentages of 36.4 percent (40-of-110) and 31.1 (14-of-45) and also forced nearly twice as many turnovers (33-17).
Western Washington: The Vikings extended their win streak to six games as Richard Woodworth, who has made his last 16 foul shots, had 33 points and five steals in an 84-83 win. The Vikings also were led by Austin Bragg with 16 points and Jeffrey Parker with 14 in the victory.
GNAC SPLITS 28 GAMES WITH PACWEST: GNAC teams posted a 54-34 record (.614) in the non-conference portion of their schedule. That percentage ranks just ninth during the 13-year history of the conference and is the second lowest since the 2006-07 season. GNAC teams finished 29-28 against Division II non-conference opponents, including 24-25 in regional contests. The GNAC split 28 games with the PacWest (14-14), lost six of nine games against the CCAA and posted a 7-5 record in games that count as regional contests under the NCAA "contiguous" state rule.
GNAC (14) vs. PacWest (14): Simon Fraser 3-0, Alaska Anchorage 2-0, Western Washington 2-0, Seattle Pacific 2-1, Alaska Fairbanks 2-2, MSU Billings 1-1, Central Washington 1-2, Western Oregon 1-2, Northwest Nazarene 0-3, Saint Martin's 0-3.
GNAC (3) vs. CCAA (6): Seattle Pacific 2-1, Western Oregon 1-1, Alaska Anchorage 0-1, Saint Martin's 0-1, Simon Fraser 0-1, Western Washington 0-1.
PacWest (14) vs. GNAC (14): Dixie State 4-0, Cal Baptist 3-0, Azusa Pacific 2-0, Chaminade 2-0, Point Loma Nazarene 1-0, Hawaii Pacific 1-1, Hawaii Hilo 1-1, Academy of Art 0-2, Fresno Pacific 0-2, Notre Dame de Namur 0-2, BYU-Hawaii 0-3, Holy Names 0-3.
CCAA (6) vs. GNAC (3): CSU San Bernardino 1-0, Chico State 1-0, Cal State Stanislaus 1-0, Cal State L.A. 1-0, CSU Dominguez Hills 2-1, Cal Poly Pomona 0-1, San Francisco State 0-1.
PREVIOUS RED LION PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Week of Nov. 3-10 - David Downs, Seattle Pacific (G, 6-2, 195, Sr., Kirkland, WA - Bellevue Christian) was selected the MVP in the CCA (Conference Commissioners Association) Division II Tipoff Classic as he led the Falcons to a 3-0 record. Downs averaged 25 points, shooting 62.1 percent from the field (18-29) and 76.5 percent from the arc (13-17). He also made 26 of 29 free throws (89.7 percent). In addition he led SPU with 11 assists and also had seven rebounds.
Week of Nov. 11-17 - Mark McLaughlin, Central Washington (G, 6-6, Sr., Bothell, WA - Inglemoor) scored 60 points in a pair of contests, including 42 in a 95-90 win over Colorado Christian to earn all-tournament honors in the SPU Sodexo Tipoff tournament. That equaled the ninth highest point total in GNAC history and was the most since John Allen of Western Washington and Parrish West of Alaska Fairbanks had 43-point games in January, 2011. McLaughlin made 17 field goals against CCU, one off the GNAC single-game record of 18 by Gerrit Eades of Saint Martin's against Alaska Anchorage in 2002.
Week of Nov. 18-24 - Ronnie Baker, Alaska Fairbanks (G, 6-3, Sr., Vallejo, CA - Diablo Valley) scored 59 points and also had 16 rebounds, 12 assists and four steals in leading the Nanooks to three wins and the tournament title in the GCI Alaska Invitational at Fairbanks. Baker, who was named to the all-tournament team, scored a career-high 29 points in Saturday's 83-72 win over Fresno Pacific. For the tournament, Baker shot 54.1 percent from the floor (20-37), 53.8 percent from the three-point line (7-13) and 80 percent from the foul line (12-15).
Week of Nov. 25-Dec.1: Austin Bragg, Western Washington (C, 6-9, Sr., Longview, WA - Clark CC) scored 20 points and also had 13 rebounds and five blocked shots to lead the Vikings to a 72-69 win over No. 1 ranked Metro State. Bragg hit a driving layup with 11.8 seconds to give WWU, which extended its home court win streak to a school and GNAC-record 31 games, a four-point lead.
Week of Dec. 2-8: Brian McGill, Alaska Anchorage (G, 6-2, So., Clackamas, OR) scored 29 points and also had 10 assists to lead the Seawolves to a 96-76 win over Alaska Fairbanks Saturday at the Wells Fargo Sports Complex. McGill, a transfer from Western Oregon, made eight of 12 shots, including two of two three-pointers. He also converted on 11 of 12 foul shots. On the season, McGill ranks fifth in the GNAC in scoring (17.2) and second in assists (6.2).
Week of Dec. 9-15: Grayson Moore, Northwest Nazarene (G, 6-6, So., Logan, UT - Sheridan College) had back-to-back career highs in scoring 47 points as the Crusaders split two games. He scored 22 points and also had nine rebounds, three assists, three blocks and a steal in a 79-62 loss to College of Idaho Wednesday. Moore accounted for 35.5 percent of the Crusaders' points and 26.5 percent of its rebounds in the contest. He converted on six of 10 three-pointers as NNU cashed in on 11 of 27 overall. Moore followed that up with a 25-point, seven-rebound performance Saturday in an 88-82 win over Walla Walla. He made four of seven treys in that contest finishing the week with a 58.8 percentage from the arc (10 of 17) after beginning the week shooting just 21.6 percent on treys (8 of 37).
Week of Dec. 16-22: Rodney Webster, Western Oregon (G, 6-1, Sr., Hanford, CA - Hanford West & Fresno City CC) came off the bench to lead the Wolves in scoring (35), assists (9) and steals (5) as WOU ran its win streak to four games with a pair of victories, including a 84-76 regional counting-win over South Dakota Mines. Webster also had eight rebounds, the third most on the team, and shot 56 percent from the field (14-25) including three of four from beyond the three-point arc. He also had one of WOU's two blocks as the Wolves evened their regional record at 4-4.
Week of Dec. 30-Jan. 5: Riley Carel, Saint Martin's (G, 6-2, Jr., Enumclaw, WA) and Andrew Kelly, Alaska Fairbanks (F, 6-7, Sr., Gilbert, AZ - Chandler-Gilbert) ... Carel scored 29 points, including 17 in the Saints' 73-69 win over nationally 11th ranked Seattle Pacific as the Saints beat the Falcons for just the third time in the 13-year history of the conference. Carel also had career highs for assists (8) and steals (5) in the win, while also grabbing six rebounds and making seven of 12 shots. Kelly scored 26 points and also had 19 rebounds and three blocked shots in wins over Simon Fraser (67-58) and nationally 15th ranked Western Washington (65-61) as the Nanooks beat the Vikings at The Patty Center for the second year in a row.
Week of Jan. 6-12: Mark McLaughlin, Central Washington (G, 6-6, Sr., Bothell, WA - Inglemoor & Tacoma CC) scored 66 points, including 39 in a 106-103 double overtime win over Western Oregon. McLaughlin, who is averaging nearly 30 points per game (29.4) in five conference contests and 26.3 overall, made seven of nine three-pointers in the two contests, including a trey with 10 seconds left in the first overtime to force the second extra five-minute period against WOU. Overall, he connected on 17 of 34 shots and 25 of 26 foul shots, including 16 of 16 against the Wolves.
Week of Jan. 13-19: Patrick Simon, Seattle Pacific (F, 6-8, Sr., Ephrata, WA) scored 42 points, including 29 in a ROOT SPORTS regionally-televised game against Western Washington to lead the Falcons to a 76-60 win over the 19th ranked Vikings, halting WWU's GNAC and school-record home winning streak at 36 games. Simon shot 72.7 percent from the floor (16 of 22), missing just once (6 of 7) from the three-point line where he has the fourth best career percentage in GNAC history, converting 109 of 232 (47.0 percent). Simon also had 12 rebounds in two contests, including a game-high seven in a 73-49 win Saturday at Simon Fraser. He also contributed four steals to SPU's two victories, its first two wins this season on an opponent's home court.
Week of Jan. 20-26: Mark McLaughlin, Central Washington (G, 6-6, Sr., Bothell, WA - Inglemoor & Tacoma CC) and Travis Thompson, Alaska Anchorage (G, 6-1, Jr., Anchorage, AK) ... McLaughlin became just the second player in GNAC history to record back-to-back 40-point games scoring 83 points. He was efficient in producing 43 points in a 99-94 loss to Western Washington and 40 points in a 96-79 win against Simon Fraser, shooting 68.3 percent from the floor (28-of-41), including 5-of-9 three-pointers. McLaughlin, who leads Division II in scoring averaging 28.3 points per game, also made 22-of-26 free throws, extending his streak of foul shots made to 42 before missing late in Thursday's contest ... For the second straight week, Thompson scored 56 points in a pair of contests increasing his career total to 1,004 and becoming the 58th player in GNAC to reach 1,000. He had 29 points in a 92-58 win at Western Oregon and 27 in a 79-78 victory at Saint Martin's. In the latter game, he also drew a charge with seven seconds left to secure the win. Thompson, who had six rebounds, five assists and a team-high four steals, shot 59.3 percent from the floor (16-of-27), 52.6 percent from the arc (10-of-19) and 93.3 percent from the foul line (14-of-15).
Week of Jan. 27-Feb. 2: Austin Bragg, Western Washington (F, 6-9, Sr., Longview, WA - Clark CC) had 31 points, 26 rebounds and 13 assists and recorded the first triple-double in the GNAC in 10 years in leading the Vikings to wins over Alaska Fairbanks (53-51) and Alaska Anchorage (99-76). Bragg had one-third of WWU's points (18 of 53) and rebounds (14 of 42) in Thursday's win against the Nanooks before recording the third triple-double (13 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists) in GNAC history in Saturday's regionally televised win over Alaska Anchorage. In the two contests, Bragg made 12 of 20 field goal attempts and all five of his free throw attempts.
Three Vikings Named to NABC Honors Court
WWU Men’s Basketball earns the NABC Team Academic Excellence Award for team GPA over 3.0
Stafford Dominating Seattle's Crawsover Pro-Am
2016-17 GNAC Player of the Year is averaging 34.0 points per game
Vikings Add Pair of Transfers from Cerritos College
Tyler Payne and Micah Winn set to join WWU for 2017-18 season after standout careers at Cerritos College
Stafford to Play Professionally in Iceland
Feature story on Taylor Stafford in the Western Front
Parker and Stafford to Play for Bellingham Slam
WWU basketball standouts to play in 2017 Seattle Pro-Am League
2016-17 Men's Basketball Season in Review
The Vikings won the GNAC Regular-Season and Conference Tournament Title
Taylor Stafford To Play Professionally in Iceland
Stafford was the 2016-17 GNAC Player of the Year and a First Team All-American
Alumni Edge Slam in Back 2 Bellingham Battle
David Gage and Anye Turner combine for 60 points for the WWU Alumni squad
Alumni Men's Basketball Game Set for Saturday
Former WWU basketball players will take the court in an exhibition game vs. the Bellingham Slam
Men's Basketball Banquet To Celebrate Season
GNAC champion Vikings will hold 2016-17 banquet May 2 at Bellingham Golf & Country Club
WWU is 14th in Division II All-Sports Standings
WWU's men's and women's basketball programs gather points by advancing to the NCAA Tournament
Stafford Scores 12 Points in D2 All-Star Game
Taylor Stafford represents WWU in Reese's Division II All-Star Game
Watch Taylor Stafford in D2 All-Star Game
Stafford will play for the East squad in the Reese’s® Division II College All-Star game tonight in Sioux Falls, SD
Taylor Stafford Named First Team All-American
Stafford becomes third player in WWU men’s basketball history to earn first-team All-America status
Stafford & Parker Named NABC All-West Region
Stafford (1st team) and Parker (2nd team) earn All-West Region honors for the Vikings