We Think We Played This Team in Church League Ball One Year. Seriously, our Google machine is broken… can anyone explain what this is? Southwest Assemblies of God????
Left Coast Hoops. There were three really good games in the Pac-10 tonight.
- Washington 73, Arizona St. 70 (OT). UW got a big win over its nearest competitor for the Pac-10 crown behind Jon Brockman’s 21/11 and Quincy Pondexter’s 10/12. ASU came back from 13 down in the first half and appeared to have the momentum when the Sun Devils stole the ball from Justin Dentmon for a dunk to tie the game with 0:21 left. Once both James Harden and James Pendergraph fouled out in the extra period, however, it was clear ASU didn’t have enough to pull off the upset. ASU now sits in a three-way tie with Cal and UCLA in second place at 10-5 in the Pac-10.
- UCLA 76, Stanford 71. For much of this game, it appeared that the UCLA swoon of the past few weeks on the road would continue. Josh Shipp made sure that wasn’t going to happen, though, going for 24/7/4 assts to keep the Bruins alive for another regular season Pac-10 title should Washington falter. It’s clear that UCLA’s stalwart defense just isn’t what it used to be – Stanford hit 49% from the field and 50% from three in this one (can you believe the Bruins rank #254 nationally in FG% defense?).
- California 81, USC 78 (OT). USC went on a 14-4 run in the final six minutes to tie this game and send it to overtime, but Cal would not be denied its tenth Pac-10 win behind Patrick Christopher’s 29 pts. USC really is the classic bubble team – #47 RPI, 16-11 overall, 7-8 Pac-10, key wins over Cal, Arizona, Arizona St., and we’re not sure how this team is even on the bubble, but they are. The Trojans could really use a win over Stanford on Saturday.
The Rest of Your Thursday Night.
- Gonzaga 81, Santa Clara 73. Gonzaga got 29/9 from Josh Heytvelt to go to 13-0 in the WCC, one win away from another undefeated conference season. This was a tight game throughout, and SC’s fans cost the home team at least four pts with their decisions to throw debris on the court protesting foul calls down the stretch.
- Illinois 52, Minnesota 41. With six minutes to go, the score was 42-41; Minnesota never scored again. Another fugly Big Ten game. Minnesota needs wins, as they’ve now lost five of their last seven games. The Gophers get Wisconsin and Michigan at home in their final two.
- Butler 78, Youngstown St. 57. Butler rolled to its third straight Horizon League championship behind Matt Howard’s 25/10.
- Cincinnati 65, West Virginia 61. Bob Huggins visited his old stomping grounds tonight, but it was UC with the win in the battle of two Big East bubble teams. The computers love WVU this year for some reason, but both teams currently sit at 8-7 in the conference, and this win helped Cincy a lot more than it hurt WVU.
- Xavier 68, St. Joseph’s 54. After having lost three straight road games, XU got its mojo back behind 18/10 from Derrick Brown. The XU-Dayton game next Thursday night could be for all the A10 marbles.
- Wake Forest 85, NC State 78. Wake got back on track tonight with a tougher-than-expected home win over NC State. James Johnson answered the bell with 28/18 for the Deacs.
- Miami (FL) 62, Virginia 55. The Hurricanes struggled in this one but managed to hang on and have a good chance to get to 8-8 in the ACC with games at Georgia Tech and home against NC State remaining.
- Michigan 87, Purdue 78. Michigan ripped apart the Purdue defense to the tune of 63% shooting behind DeShawn Sims (29/5) and Manny Harris (27/8/4 assts), further contributing to the mess that is known as the middle of the Big Ten (five teams with eight wins).
- Washington St. 69, Arizona 53. Wazzu continued surging with another impressive win after beating UCLA over the weekend, but it’s probably too little, too late. Arizona is ok for now, but they’d do themselves well to get another Pac-10 win out of their last three to get to 9-9 in the conference.
- St. Mary’s 62, Pepperdine 49. Diamon Simpson put up another dub-dub (13/14) as SMC moved into a tie with Portland for second place in the WCC, which will come down to this weekend’s games for the seedings in next week’s WCC Tourney.
- Memphis 71, UAB 60. John Calipari’s Tigers continue to mow down Conference USA, winning its 55th straight conference game and 19th consecutive overall game in the process. Even more interestingly, Memphis held UAB’s best player, Robert Vaden, to 0-17 shooting. That’s ZERO FOR SEVENTEEN, which is John Starks-esque in level of bricklaying (see below).