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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Eagles take on Cal Friday night, then their final non-conference home game Monday Dec 22

Eagles are off to their best start in 28 years, look to keep it going vs. Pac-12 opponent Cal
http://goeags.com/sports/m-baskbl/2014-15/releases/14mbDec17Cal-LCState

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Historic Win for the Eagles at Indiana

http://vimeo.com/112947541

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

EWU Men's Basketball Air Force Team Building trip

The Eags took their strength and conditioning outside the box this weekend at the Bowl and Pitcher in Riverside State Park. An Air Force Sergeant and his team of 7 SERE men had the guys running on trails, climbing rocky hillsides, and using GPS to track down various checkpoints in the park.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gV3nnY2SKnE






Saturday, September 20, 2014

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Pre-season begins

The guys are back in Cheney for pre-season conditioning. Putting in the work for a great season ahead.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Predicting the Best Shooters for the 2014-15 College Basketball Season


Tyler Harvey listed as one of the nations top shooters going into the 2014-15 season

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2074925-predicting-the-best-shooters-for-the-2014-15-college-basketball-season

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Summer Basketball Camps

Make sure you check out http://www.ewubasketballcamps.com for info on our summer camps.

  • EWU High School Team Camps:
    • June 20-22
    • June 26-28
    • July 11-13
  • EWU Individual Camps:
    • July 21-24 - Development Camp (9am-3pm) - $125
      • Designed for campers ages 7-12
    • July 23-25 - Advanced Skills Camp (9am-3pm) - $100
      • Designed for campers ages 13-16
    • August 2nd - Shooting Academy (9am-3pm) - $50
      • Designed for campers grades 4-12


For all registration and general questions, please contact:

Craig Fortier
Eastern Washington Basketball

ewubasketballcamp@gmail.com

Friday, March 14, 2014

SEASON RECAP: Eagles Improve by Three Wins With Best Season in 10 Year


Senior-less Eastern falls a victory shy of a postseason berth, but the progress made has EWU eager for 2014-15 season
A near-miss left the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team only hungrier for its next opportunity.
Although  they came a victory shy of a Big Sky Conference Tournament berth, the Eagles finished with three more league wins and five more victories overall than a year ago. Eastern established eight school records in the 2013-14 season, including one league mark.
Eastern was 7-4 in its last 11 league games to help EWU finish 15-16 overall and 10-10 in the league. The 15 victories equals the most for the Eagles in 10 years since EWU finished 17-13 in the 2003-04 season. With 40 victories overall and 25 league wins in three seasons under head coach Jim Hayford, this is the best three-year stretch since 2005-08 when Eastern had 41 wins and the best in league play since 2001-04 when the Eagles won 30.

The best news of all is that the Eagles had no seniors on its 2013-14 roster, and the Eagles return highly-regarded sophomores Tyler Harvey and Venky Jois. Harvey was a first team All-Big Sky selection and earned second team honors on the National Association of Basketball Coaches All-District 6 team – EWU’s first player honored on that team since Rodney Stuckey in 2007. Jois earned honorable mention accolades for the second-straight year, as well as being the 2012-13 Freshman of the Year in the league. College Sports Madness named Jois (third team) and junior point guard Drew Brandon (second team) to its All-Big Sky Conference squad, and Jois earned first team All-BSC honors from College Hoops Daily.
“We were the youngest team, but starting next season you won’t hear me say that anymore,” said Hayford. “We have balanced classes, depth and experience. We are going to have upper classmen next year and will start juniors and seniors. We have the building finished and had the two premier underclassmen in the league this year.”
Eastern Washington ended the season with a 72-68 loss to Weber State in which the Eagles rallied from an 18-point second half deficit only to miss potential game-tying and game-winning shots in the final seconds. The Eagles finished in a head-to-head tie with Sacramento State for seventh, but were eliminated in the tiebreaker for the final berth in the league tourney because the two teams split their season series and the Hornets picked up a tie-breaking victory over Weber State.
“We were right there,” said Hayford. “Unfortunately our conference tournament is one where every team doesn’t qualify. I can’t judge this year’s team on not going to the postseason tournament, although our goal is to be a perennial playoff team. Last year a 10-10 record tied for fourth in the league, and in my first year we were at .500 (8-8) and hosted a first-round game. Go figure.”
  
Under Hayford, Eastern Has Best Three Seasons All-Time for Most 3-Pointers and Fewest Turnovers . . .
En route to leading the Big Sky in scoring with an average of 76.2 points per game, Eastern finished with the third-most 3-pointers made in school history (251). The top two marks – 283 in 2012 and 264 in 2013 – came in Hayford’s first two seasons at the helm. The previous record was 242 in 2011.
And the Eagles did it while averaging only 12.0 turnovers per game, ranking only behind the 11.8 the Eagles averaged in Hayford’s first season as EWU’s head coach. Again, Eastern’s top three seasons in school history have come under Hayford, having averaged 13.4 in 2013 (the previous record before 2012 was 13.5 in 2000). 
Harvey’s 109 3-Pointers Headlines List of School Records . . .
Harvey was the Big Sky’s leading scorer with a 21.8 average, and ranked in the top 13 nationally in four categories. Through games of March 9, his scoring average ranked eighth, and his combined ranking of 18th in 3-pointers per game (5th, 3.52) and 3-point shooting percentage (13th, 43.3) was third in NCAA Division I. He was also 10th in free throw percentage (89.7).
Harvey set the school’s single season record for 3-pointers made on Feb. 27 when he had seven against UNC, breaking the previous record of 103 set by Shannon Taylor in the 1998-99 season. He finished with 109 for the season, ranking second in Big Sky Conference history behind the league record of 124 (Stephen Sir, Northern Arizona, 2006-07).
Jois, the Big Sky Conference Freshman of the Year as a freshman, finished with averages of 13.4 points, 8.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.6 blocked shots per game while making 52.8 percent of his shots from the field. He established a new school record for career blocked shots, with a current total of 115.
Harvey’s perfect 20-of-20 free throw performance against Southern Utah on Jan. 23 was both a school and conference record, and his 20 free throws made was a school mark. He also had 10 3-pointers versus Northern Colorado to set a school record.
The other school records established included the career shooting percentage for Martin Seiferth (currently 64.4 percent to rank ahead of Ron Cox at .629 from 1974-77), and team records for free throws made (38) and attempted (49) versus Southern Utah on Jan. 23, 2014.
“I want to shine a light on all our players,” added Hayford. “I was proud of all of them.”
* The Eagles led the Big Sky Conference in scoring offense (76.1), 3-pointers made per game (8.1), rebounds (36.8), and blocked shots (4.3); were second in defensive field goal percentage (.446); and finished third in assists (13.45) and defensive 3-point field goal percentage (.345).

On All-Big Sky Performers Tyler Harvey and Venky Jois: “Tyler had an outstanding season. He was one of the top perimeter shooters not only in the Big Sky Conference, but in the whole country. It’s fitting for him to be recognized as a first team All-Big Sky player who led the Big Sky in scoring. We’re proud of him. And most importantly, Eagle fans are excited we have to more great seasons ahead with Tyler. I’m glad Venky was recognized as a sophomore too. To have two underclassmen recognized in the all-conference voting really bodes well for where our program is headed.”

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Eagles a Victory Away from Berth Thanks to 11 3-pointers and Defense in 77-69 Win

Highlights from EWU's win over ISU - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVOMgm6uEaQ

Eastern can now clinch a Big Sky Conference Tournament berth with a win Saturday when league champion and tourney host Weber State visits

For the Big Sky Conference leader in offense, defense is sometimes an afterthought.
But Eastern Washington University held Idaho State to 34 percent shooting from the field – including just 5-of-26 3-point attempts – and the Eagles bolstered their postseason hopes with a wire-to-wire 77-69 Big Sky Conference men's basketball victory Thursday (March 6) at Reese Court in Cheney, Wash.
A trio of players – sophomore Tyler Harvey, junior Parker Kelly and freshman Felix Von Hofe -- combined for 11 3-pointers for Eastern. Martin Seiferth added a double-double and Harvey and Kelly combined to make 6-of-6 free throws in the final 36 seconds to clinch the win.
“That was a great home win,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford, who team is on the cusp of a berth in the Big Sky Conference Tournament. “We defended our home court against a veteran Idaho State team that gave it all they had. Our game plan was solid and our guys executed it.”
Now 14-15 overall and 10-9 in the league, Eastern can wrap-up a postseason berth when they end the regular season against struggling Big Sky Conference regular season champion Weber State on Saturday (March 8) at 2:05 p.m. The final regular season game of the season for the Eagles will be carried live on ESPN 700-AM and www.watchbigsky.com. At halftime, the No. 30 jersey of Eagle legend Ron Cox will be retired.
Eastern is now in a three-way tie for fifth in the Big Sky at 10-9, but only three games separate first through seventh place in the standings – and four from first to ninth. The Eagles can finish anywhere from a fourth-place tie (fifth after tiebreakers) in the league to a tie for seventh (eighth after tiebreakers).
In the event of a loss to WSU, the Eagles won’t know if they’ve advanced to the seven-team Big Sky Conference Tournament until about five hours later, after the rest of the league games conclude. EWU can still advance with a 10-10 record, but would need a combination of help involving a Portland State win over Idaho State, a victory by Montana State over Sacramento State and a Northern Colorado loss at Southern Utah.
Idaho State was in a must-win and hope situation entering Thursday’s game, and is now eliminated at 8-11 in the league and 11-17 overall.
Despite falling at Portland State 66-59 on Thursday, Weber State still leads the league at 13-6 and is 16-11 overall. But WSU has lost four of its last six heading into Saturday’s game at EWU. The Wildcats have clinched at least a share of the league title, and have also wrapped up host status of the tournament taking place March 13-15.
Harvey, ranked 10th in NCAA Division I with a 21.8 scoring average, took over the role at point guard Thursday in place of Drew Brandon, who missed the last 1 1/2 games with a hand injury suffered against UNC. Although the hand is not broken, Brandon played only seven minutes against ISU.
Harvey made only 5-of-18 shots overall and 4-of-14 from the 3-point stripe, but finished with 22 points and a career-high 10 rebounds to finish with his first career double-double. He also tied his career highs with eight assists and four steals.
Kelly added 16 points, seven rebounds to equal a career high, and three assists, but he also did a great job on defense against ISU leading scorer Chris Hansen. He made only 4-of-17 shots in finishing with 11 points – five below his season average of 16.7.
Eastern lost the rebounding battle 43-41 and had twice as many turnovers as ISU (16 to eight). But EWU out-shot the Bengals 47 percent to 34 percent and had six more 3-point baskets.
“Their best offensive player (Hanson) was not able to get going because Parker played locked down on him,” said  Hayford. “It is rare that you play a team and they miss 48 shots. You look at the rebounding -- 43-41 -- and that is a lot of rebounds. So I guess we were playing pretty good defense to make them miss so many (shots).”
Seiferth closed the game with 14 points, 10 rebounds and three blocked shots. Venky Jois chipped in 12 points and seven rebounds, and neared career highs with six assists and six blocked shots.
“Our veterans stepped up,” praised Hayford. “This is a really solid team win, and I am really proud of our team. We advanced our program tonight.”
Also providing a boost was Von Hofe, who played 16 minutes off the bench. He hit a trio of 3-pointers and scored 11 points, eight in the first half.
“We recruited Felix to be a three-point-shooting specialist,” said Hayford. “He is a really good shooter. He has really come on, particularly in the second half of league. He may be a freshman, but he has a lot of international experience so being in a big game is something he looks forward to. Especially with Drew’s injury, we knew he was going to get looks.”
Eastern jumped out to a quick 16-4 lead as the Eagles made eight of its first 16 shots and ISU made only 1-of-11. After the Bengals cut the lead to six, Eastern ended the half on a 16-8 run to take a 37-23 lead at intermission. Von Hofe had two of EWU’s four 3-pointers in the run, and the freshman equaled his career high with eight points in the first half alone.
The Bengals cut the lead to five in the second half, but in a 24-second span Harvey hit a triple, Jois had a block and Harvey fed Seiferth for a dunk that regained a 48-38 lead with 13:03 to play. Eastern led by no less than eight the rest of the way.
“We had a great first half,” said Hayford. “Credit Idaho State because at halftime they came out knowing their season was on the line. We took their best punches. They would cut it we would come back. They cut it and we would come back.”
Eastern played three games in six days last week, starting with a disappointing 87-76 home loss to Portland State. But the Eagles came back three days later to knock-off then-second place Northern Colorado 80-66 on its home court, then lost to the new owner of second place, North Dakota, 69-67 on a rebound basket at the buzzer.
Harvey set the school’s single season record for 3-pointers made on Feb. 27 against UNC, giving him 104 for the season to eclipse the previous record of 103 set by Shannon Taylor in the 1998-99 season. Now with 109 after the ISU game, Harvey is second in Big Sky Conference history and 15 behind the league record of 124 (Stephen Sir, Northern Arizona, 2006-07).
Harvey entered this week ranked in the top 10 nationally in three categories, and his combined ranking of 12th in 3-pointers per game (6th, 3.62) and 3-point shooting percentage (6th, 45.3) is second in NCAA Division I. His 21.8 scoring average ranks 10th.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Berth on the Line When Eastern Hosts Idaho State & Weber State

Talk about coming down to the wire.
The postseason hopes of the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team most likely will come down to winning a pair of home games this week, as the Eagles host Idaho State on Thursday (March 6) at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time before concluding the regular season against Big Sky Conference leader Weber State on Saturday (March 8) at 2:05 p.m. Both games will be carried live on ESPN 700-AM and www.watchbigsky.com.
But even then, the Eagles may not know if they’ve advanced to the seven-team Big Sky Conference Tournament until about five hours later, after the rest of the league games conclude. Eastern enters the week in a three-way tie for seventh in the Big Sky at 9-9, but only three games separate second through 10th place in the standings. The Eagles can finish anywhere from second in the league to 10th.
Eastern played three games in six days last week, starting with a disappointing 87-76 home loss to Portland State. But the Eagles came back three days later to knock-off then-second place Northern Colorado 80-66 on its home court, then lost to the new owner of second place, North Dakota, 69-67 on a rebound basket at the buzzer.
“We need to defend our home court – if we had done that on Monday we’re sitting here at 10-8 and not 9-9,” said Hayford. “Who knows how it’s all going to finish up? There are going to be some crazy games in the Big Sky the rest of the season that will come down to the last second too. It’s all a part of being in a league race. We need to win our way in.”
Idaho State is also in a must-win and hope situation entering Thursday’s game, and is now 8-10 in the league and 11-16 overall. Weber State is leading the league at 13-5 and is 16-10 overall, but WSU has lost three of its last five games heading into Thursday’s game at Portland State. The Wildcats have clinched at least a share of the league title, and have also wrapped up host status of the tournament taking place March 13-15.
There are far too many potential ties and tiebreaker situations to even list the scenarios that exist. So while the Eagles control their own destiny to a top seven finish, there exists the possibility that as many as eight teams could finish 11-9 and one or two of them could be left out of the tournament because of tiebreakers.
“What you want is to have a team that knows that every game you play matters,” said Hayford of his senior-less team. “And we are headed into a weekend on our home court where every game does matter. We need fans to come out and cheer them on. Our destiny is in our own hands on our home court.”
Eastern has played its last 1 1/2 games without starting point guard Drew Brandon, who missed the UND game with a hand injury suffered against UNC. Although the hand is not broken, Brandon is questionable this week.
Sophomore Tyler Harvey had 31 points and seven 3-pointers to lead EWU to a season sweep over the Bears and hand UNC its first home loss in 14 outings this season. Against UND, sophomore Venky Jois and junior Martin Seiferth both contributed double-doubles as they combined for 35 points and 26 rebounds.
“We just played a team with seven seniors who have started a lot of games,” said Hayford of UND. “And we played it without our point guard and took it right down to the buzzer. I was proud of our team – they laid it all out there and gave it all they had.”
Harvey set the school’s single season record for 3-pointers made against UNC, giving him 104 for the season to eclipse the previous record of 103 set by Shannon Taylor in the 1998-99 season. Now with 105 after the UND game, Harvey is tied for second in Big Sky Conference history (Cory Schwab, Northern Arizona, 2000-01) and 19 behind the league record of 124 (Stephen Sir, Northern Arizona, 2006-07).
Harvey enters this week ranked in the top 10 nationally in three categories, and his combined ranking of 12th in 3-pointers per game (6th, 3.62) and 3-point shooting percentage (6th, 45.3) is second in NCAA Division I. His 21.8 scoring average ranks 10th.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

EWU Hits Vegas

On the way to Southern Utah the guys spent the day together hanging at the pool and on the strip. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Guards Drew Brandon & Tyler Harvey Honored for Big Numbers in Eagle Home Sweep

Eastern point guard has back-to-back outings of nine assists and only one turnover, while sharpshooter has 53 points with 12 3-pointers in double-digit wins over Sacramento State and Northern Arizona

After impressive victories by 13 and 19 points in a weekend home sweep, guards Drew Brandon and Tyler Harvey both received player of the week honors Monday (Feb. 17) for the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team.
Brandon was named by College Sports Madness as not only its Big Sky Conference Player of the Week, but its Mid-Major Player of the Week as well after a weekend highlighted by 18 assists with only two turnovers in 75 minutes of action.
Harvey was selected by the Big Sky Conference as its Player of the Week for the second time this season. Now ranking in the top 11 in NCAA Division I in three categories, Harvey scored 37 points in an 84-65 victory over previously second-place Northern Arizona, and had 16 one game earlier in an 85-72 win versus Sacramento State.
Brandon, a junior from Corona, Calif., and a transfer from Sierra College in California, also had 26 points, 13 rebounds and a pair of steals in the sweep, and made 14-of-15 free throws to help EWU ice wins. He is ranked 31st this week in NCAA Division I with an average of 5.6 assists per game to lead the league.
“Drew is playing complete games,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford. “He’s a defender, a rebounder, he runs our offense and he takes care of the ball. He is coming into his own.”
Harvey, a sophomore from Torrance, Calif., made 12-of-21 3-point shots last week and is now ranked fourth in the nation with an average of 3.76 per game. He is also ninth in 3-point field goal percentage (45.6 percent) and is 11th in scoring (21.6). With 94 3-pointers for the season, he is just nine from the school record of 103 and 30 from the Big Sky Conference record of 124.
“Tyler is being recognized for his great individual play that is leading to team success,” said Hayford. “I am very happy for him. He works hard and deserves the honor.”
Eastern has won four of its last five games and next plays at Southern Utah on Saturday (Feb. 22) followed by a home game next Monday (Feb. 24) versus Portland State. Both games start at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time and are carried live on ESPN 700-AM and www.watchbigsky.com.
 
 

More on Drew Brandon . . .

Ranking 31st in NCAA Division I in assists (5.6), he is among the league leaders in four categories. He has averages of 11.1 points (23rd), 6.9 rebounds (sixth), 5.6 assists (first) and an assist-to-turnover ratio of +2.3 (first) after his first 25 games in NCAA Division I. In league only statistics, he is leading in assists (5.6), assist-to-turnover ratio (+2.2) and is sixth in rebounding (7.0).
Brandon had 18 assists and just two turnovers in 75 total minutes in EWU’s home sweep over Sacramento State and Northern Arizona – including performances of nine assists and one turnover in each game. The transfer from Sierra College in California also had 26 points and 13 rebounds in the two games, and made 14-of-15 free throws.
He already has five double-doubles, including a near-miss of a triple-double with 15 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds versus Montana State in a 77-72 win. He had a double double-double during one homestand this season -- he had 11 points and 13 rebounds versus North Dakota on Jan. 30, then had 15 points and 12 assists in a 94-90 overtime victory over Northern Colorado on Feb. 1. His 12 assists were a career high, and rank as the fourth-most in school history (the record is 18). He followed that with his fifth double figure rebounding game with 10 at Montana State on Feb. 6, then had a career-high 19 points at Montana two nights later. He finished with 13 points, 14 rebounds and six assists versus Washington on Nov. 17 in just his second D-I game. He was the lone newcomer to EWU’s opening night starting lineup.
 

More on Tyler Harvey . . .

In NCAA Division I statistics through games of Feb. 16, Harvey is fourth in 3-pointers made per game (3.76), ninth in 3-point percentage (45.6 percent), 11th in scoring (21.6) and 25th in free throw percentage (.882). The combined shooting rankings of Harvey add up to 13, ranking him second nationally. The national leader is Ethan Wragge of Creighton with a total ranking of 12th (9th 3.32, 3rd 48.3).
Harvey continues to lead the Big Sky in scoring (21.6), ahead of North Dakota’s Troy Huff (19.6), Montana’s Kareem Jamar (19.6) and Weber State’s Davion Berry (19.1). He also leads in 3-pointers made per game (3.8) and free throw percentage (.882), and is fifth in 3-point field goal percentage (.456). In league only statistics, Harvey leads in scoring (23.4), 3-pointers made per game (3.9) and free throw percentage (.892).
Harvey hit nine 3-pointers en route to a 37-point outing in EWU’s 84-65 win over Northern Arizona on Feb. 15, to go along with performances of 36 and 38 he’s had since Jan. 23. Now with three of the top 17 performances in school history, only Rodney Stuckey (45, 38, 36, 36) and David Peed (44, 37, 37) have accomplished that feat in school history. Harvey made nine 3-pointers against NAU, coming one from the school record he tied on Feb. 1 in his 38-point effort versus Northern Colorado.
Now just nine 3-pointers from the school record of 103, Harvey is climbing the Big Sky list as well. His 94 are tied for eighth with two players, including current Portland Trailblazer Damian Lillard of Weber State (2012). Former BSC record holder Shannon Taylor from Eastern is third on the list with 103 in 1999, and the league record is 124 set by Stephen Sir of NAU in 2007.
Not only is he the Big Sky’s leading scorer, but Harvey has become a dead-eye free throw shooter for the Eagles. A year ago in early February, Harvey was barely seeing the court for the Eagles. But he earned playing time at the end of the season, and has scored in double figures in 31 of EWU’s last 33 games, with a streak of 23 snapped versus North Dakota on Jan. 30. The sophomore made only 43.5 percent of his free throws as a freshman, but this season is leading the Big Sky in games overall (.882) and leads in league play (.892). He has made 74-of-81 (.913) in his last nine outings, a 13-of-13 effort at Northern Arizona on Jan. 16, a Big Sky and EWU record 20-of-20 versus Southern Utah on Jan. 23, an 8-of-8 in a 38-point effort versus Northern Colorado on Feb. 1 and an 11-of-11 effort at Montana on Feb. 8.
Harvey has averaged 20.4 points per game in his last 33 games as an Eagle after averaging 1.3 points in his first 13 outings. In fact, his improvement by roughly 14 points per game ranks among the top 10 in the nation. A year ago in EWU’s last eight games, he scored 132 points (16.5 average) on 55 percent shooting from the field (52-of-94, including 20-of-44 3-point attempts). In the first 13 games he played in the 2012-13 season, Harvey scored just 17 points (by contrast, in the first 13 games this season he scored 261 with an average of 20.1 per game). In his freshman season, he played in 21 of EWU’s 31 games and averaged 14.0 minutes and 7.1 points per game. He currently has a 15.0 career scoring average in 46 games (29 as a starter).
 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Eagles finish the weekend sweep with 84-65 win over Northern Arizona

Tyler Harvey finishes one away from the school record with nine 3-pointers en route to a 37-point outburst for Eagles
 
Highlights -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOj-GOWsqg8&feature=youtu.be




It seemed the further away the Eagles shot the ball, the better they were.
Fueled by a season high 16 3-pointers – including nine by Tyler Harvey on his way to a 37-point outing – the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team completed a weekend sweep with an 84-65 victory over second-place Northern Arizona  Saturday (Feb. 15) at Reese Court in Cheney, Wash.
Eastern led the entire way for the second-straight game as the Eagles improved to 7-7 in the Big Sky Conference and 12-13 overall. In addition to a wire-to-wire 85-72 victory versus Sacramento State on Thursday (Feb. 13), the Eagles will move into at least sixth in the league standings, and perhaps as high as fifth, depending on the outcome of games later Saturday.
Junior Parker Kelly had four of the 3-pointers and finished with 12 points. Junior point guard Drew Brandon also finished with 12 points, and had nine assists, seven rebounds and two steals. Sophomore Venky Jois chipped in nine points and seven rebounds.
 “We needed to defend our home court this weekend, and we did that,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford. “It is a very gratifying feeling as a coach. What we are starting to see from our team is more consistency in the performance from each individual, and as we get that we are going to be more competitive in every game.”
Northern Arizona fell to 8-6 in the league and 11-14 overall. Earlier this season, the Eagles lost on the road to NAU (84-65) and Sac State (75-64).
Eastern will return to the road next Saturday (Feb. 22) to face Southern Utah before hosting Portland State the following Monday (Feb. 24). The Thunderbirds are 0-13 in the league thus far heading into Saturday’s home game with Idaho State.
The Eagles finished 16-of-30 from the 3-point line versus NAU, coming just two made treys from the record of 18 set against New Hope on Dec. 4, 2010. Eastern also had 16 treys in a 94-90 overtime win over Northern Colorado on Feb. 1.
“We recruit to shoot,” explained Hayford. “If players are three-point shooters, they want to come here. We let it fly and we are among the nation’s leaders in that.
“What we need to recognize is when they take away the three we need to balance that with attacking the rim,” he continued. “I think our guys are starting to find that balance. If they are going to let us shoot it, we’ll shoot it because we have some guys who are really good shooters.”
The 53 percent shooting night from the 3-point arc exceeded EWU’s shooting everywhere else on the court -- Eastern made only 11-of-28 (39 percent) from 2-point range, and was also only 14-of-23 (61 percent) from the free throw line.
Eastern also had a 41-33 rebounding advantage over the Lumberjacks and finished with just 12 turnovers. Brandon had a 9-to-1 assist to turnover ratio for the second-straight game.
“We really challenged our front line to take it at them, and we out-rebounded them by eight,” said Hayford. “We had a few more turnovers than I liked in the second half, but we have been keeping that number pretty low. We played a complete game, and that is why we are here.
“Drew this weekend had 18 assists and two turnovers,” he added. “When you are getting that kind of play from your point guard you are going to be hard to beat.”
 Harvey came one away from the individual record 3-point record he shares with Kevin Winford, who had 10 versus New Hope. Harvey made 10 treys on Feb. 1 versus Northern Colorado en route to a career high 38 points.
“They went to a box and one on Tyler, but Tyler just had another special day,” said Hayford. “He is an outstanding player, and I am really pleased with his performance.”
Eastern made 8-of-13 3-pointers in the first half and used a pair of big runs to open up an 18-point first-half lead. Harvey scored 16 of his points in the first half on 4-of-8 shooting from the 3-point arc.
Harvey hit a pair of early treys and the Eagles jumped out to a quick 11-1 lead. After NAU cut the margin to five, the Eagles went on a 21-6 run and opened a 32-14 lead with 5:21 to play. Harvey scored seven points in that run, and four different Eagles made 3-pointers.
Eastern made only 6-of-19 2-point shots and 3-of-11 free throws in the first half, otherwise, EWU’s 39-26 halftime lead would have been much larger. Northern Arizona’s Len Springs had all six of his school-record six blocked shots in first half.
Harvey hit a pair of 3-pointers to open the second half and the Eagles took a 46-26 lead. A 10-2 NAU run cut the lead to 12, but Harvey then hit three more treys to put the Eagles up 59-40.
Later, Kelly hit a trio of 3-pointers and the Eagles took a 70-51 lead with 8:22 remaining. The Eagles led by as many as 22 and no less than 16 the rest of the way.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Eastern Gets Season Sweep over Bobcats With 79-50 Road Rout

Eagles dominate in all facets in most complete game of the season to improve to 5-6 in the Big Sky

 


 

The Eagles were hoping for their first road win of the season, but a road rout was a bonus.
The Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team opened up an early double-digit lead and dominated in all facets of the game to win for the first time in 11 tries on an opponent home court with a 79-50 romp past Montana State Thursday (Feb. 6) at Worthington Arena in Bozeman, Mont.
“Somebody asked what happiness is, and tonight happiness is a road win,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford, whose team had its best defensive performance – by 12 points -- against a NCAA Division I opponent this season.
Big Sky scoring leader Tyler Harvey had 19 points, and career highs of eight assists and four steals to lead Eastern’s all-around team effort. Venky Jois had 15 points, six rebounds, four assists and a pair of steals, and Martin Seiferth finished with 12 points and nine boards. Parker Kelly came off the bench and chipped in 11 points and five rebounds.
All nine Eagles who played scored in the game and eight had at least one rebound. The only defensive performance this season that was better was holding Walla Walla to 44 points, and the previous best versus a DI opponent was 62 versus Montana in January. Eastern entered the game allowing a league-worst 76.8 points per game.
“We played a really complete game, especially on defense and on the boards,” praised Hayford. “We shared the ball very well on offense. They were really keying on Tyler and he was able to run offense that got other guys baskets off the pressure they were putting on him.
 “And he had only one turnover,” Hayford added. “He did a really good job of not forcing things. He did what he needed to do.”
Eastern had a 38-22 rebounding advantage, its best against a NCAA Division I opponent this season. The previous best was 12 against Boston back on Nov. 22. The Eagles had a rebounding advantage in only four of their last 16 games entering Thursday.
The Eagles also made 53 percent of their shots from the field, compared to only 39 percent for the Bobcats. Eastern, the second-best team in the Big Sky in 3-point shooting defense (.342), held MSU to 24 percent (4-of-17) from beyond the arc.
“We wanted to exert our will, and make it a game of our size over their speed,” explained Hayford. “We established Martin early in the first half with 10 points, and he played really big. We followed a game plan for 40 minutes.”
Eastern has now won two games in a row and is 5-6 in the Big Sky and 10-12 overall. Overall, the Eagles are 1-10 on opponent home courts, having not won on the road since beating Idaho State in Pocatello 87-73 on March 7, 2013. Eastern is 7-2 at home and 2-0 on neutral courts.
The Bobcats, who lost to Montana 70-66 in Bozeman on Monday, are now 5-6 in the league and 10-12 overall. Eastern is now a perfect 5-for-5 in football and men’s basketball games against the Bobcats and Grizzlies during the 2013-14 school year. Eastern has never won more than four of the six meetings in any previous season.
The Eagles remain on the road to face Montana on Saturday (Feb. 8) at Dahlberg Arena in Missoula. The game begins at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time and will be carried live on ESPN 700-AM and www.watchbigsky.com. The Grizzlies defeated Portland State 82-76 in overtime on Thursday in Missoula, and are now 11-9 overall and 6-5 in the league.
Earlier this season, the Eagles beat Montana 69-62 and Montana State 77-72 at home. Besides facing the Grizzlies on Monday, the Bobcats also had a road game last week.
“Maybe they were a little out of gas, but we’ll take it,” Hayford said. “At the end of the year you have 20 Big Sky games, and it doesn’t matter where you win them and if you win them by one or 30. And here we are at 5-6.”
Led by Harvey’s early assists and steals -- and Seiferth’s 10 points -- the Eagles opened a 17-6 lead just nine minutes into the game. Eastern continued to pour it on, and led 36-18 just before halftime on a 3-pointer by Harvey.
After leading 36-20 at intermission, Kelly hit a pair of 3-pointers in an 8-2 run to start the second half and open a 22-point lead. The advantage ballooned to 27 with a 10-2 run later in the half. The Eagles took their biggest lead of the game at 29 with 1:01 left on a 3-pointer by reserve Felix Von Hofe.
“Our players didn’t let any drama enter the game,” added Hayford. “They came out and beat them in the first half and beat them in the second half.”

Monday, February 3, 2014

Tyler Harvey Has EWU’s Sixth-Best Scoring Output in Overtime Victory

After scoring just seven on Thursday night, sophomore guard nets 38 with a school-record 10 3-pointers in Eastern’s 94-90 win over Northern Colorado

Highlights - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4J6hmMWY8QY

Tyler Harvey is back. And so are the winning ways for the Eagles.
Sophomore guard Tyler Harvey rebounded from his lowest scoring output of the year by making a school-record 10 3-pointers and totaling 38 points as the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team defeated Northern Colorado 94-90 in overtime Saturday (Feb. 1) at Reese Court in Cheney, Wash.
“Our guys stepped up and took victory out of the jaws of defeat instead of snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford. “That is something we need to keep learning, so today was an important step for our program.”
Harvey made a 3-pointer that helped send the game into overtime, then made his record-tying 10th trey to open the extra period and give EWU the lead for good. He tied the record of 10 by Kevin Winford against New Hope on Dec. 4, 2010, and his 38 points equaled current Detroit Piston Rodney Stuckey for the sixth-most in school history.
Harvey finished 10-of-15 from the 3-point stripe after going just 1-of-8 from the line and finishing just seven points in his last outing against North Dakota.
“To go 10-of-15 after going 1-of-8 on Thursday night shows that Tyler doesn’t lack any confidence,” explained Hayford. “He believes in his game, and he believes in his teammates. He understands when he has a great shot it is his role to take it. There are a lot of players that would have come off of Thursday night and said, ‘oh I am not going to shoot it’. He understands what his role is.”
The Eagles, who led by as many as 14 in the second half, made 55.2 percent of their 3-pointers in the game (16-of-29). Eastern came just two away from the record of 18 set against New Hope.
Overall, Eastern made 54.4 percent of its shots – its best shooting performance since Nov. 22 and its first 50 percent night since Nov. 29.
Four Eagles scored in double figures, including 15 points, a career-high 12 assists, seven rebounds and two steals by point guard Drew Brandon. The assists performance by the Big Sky leader was the fourth-most in school history, and his third of the season with at least 10.
“There was a lot of pressure on Drew, particularly down the stretch in the second half,” said Hayford. “(It was outstanding) for him to come away with 12 assists and then make clutch free throws. He had a clutch basket in overtime which takes great maturity and that is what this team needs.”
Junior Parker Kelly, who had scored just eight points in his last two games, came off the bench to score 17 points and grab six rebounds. Junior Martin Seiferth also came off the bench and had 10 points, six rebounds and three blocked shots. The Eagles finished with a season-high 30 bench points.
“I joked with Parker after the game and told him, ‘well that solves our bench production if we take you off the bench and you play like that,” said Hayford. “It just shows you his great character. Parker has been in a slump. He is a tough kid. He didn’t complain, and there wasn’t any conversation about it. He was just like, ‘if you call my number I’ll be ready.’
“I felt like Martin is giving us a defensive adjustment off the bench we didn’t have before,” he continued. “Maybe that is part of the chemistry we are figuring out.”
Eastern is now 4-6 in the Big Sky and 9-12 overall, while the Bears fell to 13-6 on the season and 7-3 in the league. Northern Colorado was swept this weekend after leading the league and entering ranked 13th in this week’s Mid-Major top 25 poll. They were picked to finish fourth in the Big Sky by both the coaches and media, just ahead of the Eagles.
Eastern now heads back on the road to face Montana State (Feb. 6) and Montana (Feb. 8). EWU’s next home game is Feb. 13 versus Sacramento State.
Seiferth and Venky Jois continued to inch closer to the career blocked shots record on Saturday. Each had three against the Bears, and Seiferth’s 98 blocks now rank second in school history, only one behind the school record of 99 (Paul Butorac 2004-07). Jois is right behind with 97.
The Eagles and Bears are the top scoring teams in the league, but combined for just 118 in their most recent outings. Eastern scored 61 points in a 73-61 loss to North Dakota on Thursday, while UNC was held to 57 in an 80-57 loss to Portland State that knocked the Bears out of first place in the league standings. Both EWU and UNC made less than 40 percent of their shots from the field (37.7 and 39.3 percent, respectively) after entering the game with combined averages of 150.1 points per outing (UNC 75.4, EWU 74.7).
The Bears jumped out to an early 18-6 lead as Eastern made only two of its first 10 shots. The Eagles managed to pull within three, then used an 11-0 run to take a 35-28 advantage. Four different Eagles hit 3-pointers in the run as Eastern ended the half by making 12 of its last 17 shots.
Eastern shot at a 52 percent clip in the first half, including 9-of-15 from the 3-point arc. Kelly had 11 of his points plus a pair of blocked shots in the first 20 minutes. Northern Colorado made 48 percent, but missed eight of its last 10 shots.
The Eagles remained hot after intermission, and Harvey’s eighth trey of the game gave EWU a 59-45 lead with 11:59 to play. But an 8-0 UNC run got the Bears back in the game, and eventually they took a pair of three-point leads.
After Harvey’s 3-pointer knotted the game at 81, he blocked a potential game-winning attempt by UNC’s Tate Unruh that send the game to overtime. He opened the extra period with a trey, then Brandon fed Jois for a dunk and a 5-point lead.
Brandon scored EWU’s next four points with a layup and a pair of free throws, then Harvey and Kelly each hit a pair in the final 28 seconds to wrap up the victory.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Harvey’s Big Sky Record Helps Eastern Past Southern Utah 90-83

Highlights from the game - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlva7QumOzo

Eagle guard makes 20-of-20 free throws and has the ninth-most points in EWU history in Eagle home victory

On a night Southern Utah had a season-best shooting percentage, Eastern Washington University’s Tyler Harvey trumped that with perfect shooting marksmanship.
The sophomore guard made a school and Big Sky Conference record 20-of-20 free throws and finished with a career-high 36 points as Eastern held off the Thunderbirds 90-83 Thursday (Jan. 23) at Reese Court in Cheney, Wash. The Eagles finished with school records of 38 free throws made and 49 attempts.
An 8-2 run to open the second half gave Eastern the lead for good, as the Eagles improved to 3-4 in the Big Sky and 8-10 overall with their sixth win in seven tries at home. Southern Utah, which entered the game making just 36 percent of its shots for the season, sank 54 percent in the loss, but fell to 1-15 overall and 0-7 on the season. The Thunderbirds haven’t won since defeating Arizona Christian 85-78 in their opener on Nov. 8.
“We are grateful for wins,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford. “This season we are 6-1 on our home court, and we are 0-9 when on the opponent’s court. I am glad we did what we had to do today, which is a growth step for us.”
The Eagles return to the road to play at Portland State in a “Dam Cup” game on Monday (Jan. 27). Eastern returns for a pair of home games at Reese Court versus North Dakota on Thursday, Jan. 30 and Northern Colorado on Saturday, Feb. 1.
Sophomore Venky Jois added 19 points and nine rebounds, freshman Ognjen Miljkovic had 13 points and seven boards in his first career start and junior Parker Kelly chipped in 12 points in the win. Point guard Drew Brandon, who was one of five Eagle starters to log at least 31 minutes, had five assists, six points and five rebounds.
But the night belonged to Harvey, who broke the previous school and conference record of 16-of-16 by set by Jason Lewis against Weber State on Jan. 27, 2001. The NCAA record is 24-of-24.
Harvey, the Big Sky’s second-leading scorer with a 20.3 average entering the game, finished with the ninth-most points in school history. He made 7-of-9 field goal attempts, including both of his 3-point attempts. He also had three assists, and his eight rebounds were one away from his career high.
“Our game plan was to put the ball in his hands because he is making plays,” said Hayford. “The defense kept fouling him, and Tyler kept making the free throws. It is where we need to be in every part of our program. He made a commitment to developing that area of his game. He went from a really poor free throw percentage last year to setting the Big Sky and school record tonight. I couldn’t be more pleased. He is a good player, he’s a great young man and he is only a sophomore.”
In addition, Harvey’s 20 charity shots broke the school record of 17 set by Matt Piper of Humboldt State on Dec. 28, 1982. His free throw attempts were one shy of Piper’s 21 in that game. The previous team record for made free throws was 34 set on two occasions and the old mark for attempts was 48 versus Sacramento State on Jan. 19, 1995.
Miljkovic, who missed the last six games with an ankle injury, scored 10 points in the second half for the Eagles.
“OG is still figuring out how everything flows together, but he is really skilled and he has a really good nose for the ball,” said Hayford. “I think he has the potential to be a really good player for Eastern, and I am glad he is back.”
The Eagles were hot early and scored 17 unanswered points to take an early 19-4 advantage. Harvey scored 10 points in the run, including a pair of 3-pointers as the Thunderbirds went scoreless for 6:04.
But SUU, which made just two of its first 10 shots, made 14 of its last 20 in the half to lead at intermission 39-38. The Thunderbirds had three 6-0 runs and one of 5-0 in out-scoring EWU 35-19 in the last 11:26 of the half.
Eastern sank 50 percent in the first half as Harvey scored 12 and Jois had 10, but the Thunderbirds converted on 53 percent of their shots. Seven different SUU players scored and 12 played in the half.
The Eagles scored eight of the first 10 points in the second half – including five by Miljkovic – to take the lead for good at 46-41. A trio of free throws by Harvey put Eastern up 56-47, then EWU went up by double figures.
“I said, ‘I am not interested in where we went wrong, I am more interested in what we are going to go do,’” said Hayford of his halftime speech to the team. “We just had too many people making too many mistakes whether it was defense, turnovers or a poor shot. I said ‘let’s go do this’, and I think the guys responded.”
Southern Utah managed to cut the lead to four at 68-64, but Eastern regained an eight-point advantage with a pair of baskets by Miljkovic and never led by less than five the rest of the way.
Portland State is coming off a road split last week, winning 68-64 at Sacramento State in overtime and falling at Northern Arizona 77-56. The Vikings are 7-8 overall and 2-4 in the league heading into Saturday’s home game against Southern Utah, and can return the “Dam Cup” to Portland with a victory over the Eagles.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Eags Sweep Montana and Montana State at Home!

Check out the highlights here:
Montana - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CF53-6vvZEw
Montana State - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cp4sDNYpM8w