yote notes - edition 15
COMING UP: at Northwest Christian, Friday, 7:30 p.m. (PT); at Corban, Saturday, 7:30 p.m. (PT)
LAST WEEK: vs. Evergreen (W 73-44), vs. No. 11 Northwest (L 68-53)
LIVE STATS/LIVE VIDEO: Both weekend games will feature Live Stats and Live Video online for fans unable to make the trip to the Willamette Valley. Friday night at Northwest Christian, Live Stats can be viewed online at http://nwcu.edu/athletics/livestats/xlive.htm?live=true, with the Live Video feed viewed online at http://gobeacons.com/sports/2011/9/9/GEN_0909112340.aspx. Saturday at Corban, Live Stats can be accessed at http://sidearmstats.com/corban/mbball/index.htm, with the Live Video feed available at http://gowarriorsgo.nmtvsports.com/.
YOTES END HOME LOSING STREAK: After losing five consecutive home games and four-straight Cascade Conference games to open up the league season, The C of I put a complete game together on their own hardwood Friday night, routing Evergreen, 73-44. A 65-percent shooting clip in the first half helped the team race to a big halftime advantage and cruised to the win. Unfortunately, a loss the next night to Northwest clinched the first losing season ever in the J.A. Albertson Activities Center for a C of I basketball team and their first home losing season since the 1978-79 campaign.
DEFENSIVE EFFORT NETS BURGERS: The Coyotes used 40-minutes of stellar defense to limit Evergreen to their lowest scoring output of the season – nearly 25 points below their nightly average. It marked the fewest points a Coyote opponent has scored in a CCC counter since a 73-35 victory over Warner Pacific during the 2003-04 season. For fans in attendance, it also marked the first Wendy’s “Under 55” Night, as ticket stubs from Friday’s game are good for one free Single burger at any Treasure Valley Wendy’s Restaurant – through Thursday.
DONALDSON HAS BIG WEEKEND: Gaining experience during his freshman season, fans could see the potential in Coyote guard Sydney Donaldson (Coventry, England / Charis Prep). The rookie stepped up his game this past weekend, scoring nine points and adding six rebounds in the win over Evergreen, then pouring in a career-high 20 points against nationally-ranked Northwest. Donaldson hit 50-percent of his field goal attempts on the weekend, while adding a team-high eight assists and four steals.
PETERSON PERFECT VS. EVERGREEN: A long-standing school record nearly fell by the wayside on Friday night, as guard Zach Peterson (Boise, Idaho / North Idaho CC) was a perfect 7-of-7 from the field, leading the Yotes with 17 points in the win against Evergreen. The junior was just one made field goal away from tying Mark Montgomery’s record for field goal percentage in a game (8-for-8), set during the 1983-84 season. Peterson hit 3-of-3 shots from long range and currently leads the Yotes in three-point percentage (.400).
INJURY UPDATE: Leading scorer, Matt Ballenger (Nampa, Idaho / U. of Colorado) missed both weekend games, trying to battle back from turf toe. He was joined on the bench Saturday night vs. Northwest by guards Devan Telken (Caldwell, Idaho / Vallivue HS) and Ben Van Lith (Eagle, Idaho / Coll. of Southern Idaho) – as Telken injured a knee and Van Lith injured an ankle midway through the first half. All three players are game-time decisions for the Coyotes this weekend in Oregon.
PLAYOFF PUSH IN CCC – INCLUDING THE YOTES: Three teams in the CCC have clinched playoff berths in the eight-team CCC postseason tournament – Northwest, Oregon Tech, and Warner Pacific, while the Yotes are battling for a spot in the event. The C of I is in a virtual tie with Northwest Christian for the eighth and final playoff berth – two games back of Concordia and Corban, with five games remaining. A win Friday vs. NCU would give the Yotes the inside track at the postseason spot (thanks to The C of I’s better record vs. CCC teams with a .500 or better record). The Yotes have advanced to the playoffs 29 of the past 30 seasons and every year since 1997-98.
ABOUT NORTHWEST CHRISTIAN: The final road trip of the CCC regular-season starts Friday inside the Morse Event Center at Northwest Christian, as the Yotes look to avenge a tough 64-61 loss to the Beacons (10-14, 3-9 CCC) in Caldwell. Since picking up the road win over the Coyotes, NCU has lost 4-of-5 games – the lone win, a home victory over Evergreen. The game is expected to be played at a snail’s pace, featuring the two lowest scoring teams in the league – as NCU averages just 66 points per game and hits 29-percent from outside the arc. The C of I will have to stop Jordan Buhler (11.1 pgg, 6.0 rpg) – who was limited in the first meeting due to an ankle injury. Guards Brian Hampton (10.8 ppg, 2.3 rpg) and Travis Pacos (8.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg) are tough match-ups – with Pacos scoring a game-high 22 points in Caldwell. It is the 14th all-time meeting between the teams, with the Yotes holding a 9-4 series edge.
ABOUT CORBAN: The Yotes close out the road portion of the CCC slate Saturday at Corban – squaring off against a Warriors (13-11, 5-7) club riding a two-game win streak. Justin Sherwood’s bunch averages 71 points a night and likes to shoot the three – averaging over 22 three-point attempts per night, while holding a plus-five rebound edge on their opponents. A pair of All-CCC candidates lead the Warriors – guard Jordan Carter (16.0 ppg, 4.9 rpg) and forward Erik Cronrath (15.8 ppg, 4.9 rpg), while shooting guard Jake Mauermann (6.9 ppg, 3.1 rpg) has had some of his biggest games of his career against The C of I. It is the 70th meeting all-time between the teams, with the Yotes holding a 44-25 series edge – though Corban is one of two CCC teams that head coach Rod Jensen has yet to defeat.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: As a team, the Yotes rank second in the CCC in scoring defense (64.6) and defensive field goal percentage (.406), ranking No. 3 in blocked shots per game (3.2). The team is No. 5 in turnover margin (+1.4), No. 7 in free throw percentage (.667) and steals per game (8.1), No. 8 in scoring margin (+0.3), field goal percentage (.440), rebound margin (-1.0), assists per game (13.0), and three-pointers made per game (5.5), No. 9 in three-point percentage (.292), and No. 10 in scoring average (64.9) and rebounds per game (33.8). Individually, three Coyotes are in the Top-10 in the CCC stats, as Matt Ballenger ranks No. 2 in steals per game (2.4), and No. 5 in both three-pointers made per game (2.3) and scoring average (17.0), with Krispin Banks (Dallas, Texas / Salt Lake CC) No. 5 in field goal percentage (.593) and Sydney Donaldson No. 8 in steals per game (1.7).
CCC LEADERS: Scoring Average – Eric Thompson (SOU) 20.0, Adam Herman (CU) 19.6, Bobby Hunter (OIT) 19.6, Marice Tolliver (ESC) 18.6, Matt Ballenger (C of I ) 17.0; Rebound Average – Stephen Harris (WP) 8.1, Thompson 7.7, Herman 7.7, Ervin Felder (EOU) 7.5, Michael Greene (NU) 7.4; Assists Average – Dane Johnson (WP) 6.0, William Sharp (WP) 4.9, Tolliver 4.6, Rich Skillman (NU) 4.4, Gage Aker (CU) 4.3.
RECORD BOOK: Matt Ballenger ranks among the career Top-10 in four different categories – No. 3 in three-point attempts (562), No. 4 in three-pointers made (183) and field goal attempts (1,038), and No. 7 in steals (157). He is also No. 12 in points scored (1,134) – needing 60 points to crack the all-time Top-10, and No. 13 in field goals made (407).
CONFERENCE/NATIONAL POLLS: In the latest CCC weekly poll, Oregon Tech continued to lead the 10-team conference, followed by Warner Pacific, Northwest, Southern Oregon, Eastern Oregon, and Concordia. OIT, thanks to a road loss at Concordia, fell one spot to No. 2 in the NAIA Top-25 poll, with Warner Pacific at No. 10, Northwest at No. 11, and both SOU and EOU receiving votes. The CCC and NAIA polls will be released each Monday for the remainder of the regular-season.
GAME RECAP – C OF I 73, EVERGREEN 44: Zach Peterson went a perfect 7-of-7 from the field, including three three-pointers, helping The C of I end a five-game home losing streak, stopping The Evergreen State College, 73-44, inside the J.A. Albertson Activities Center. The C of I put the game out of reach early - hitting 65-percent of their first half field goals, including 5-of-7 from outside the arc. Peterson had seven quick points as the Yotes opened an 11-3 lead, then held the Geoducks without a made field goal for a six minute stretch, using the 17-1 run to take a 46-21 lead to the locker room. The Coyotes extended the margin to 58-24 early in the second half before emptying their bench. Peterson was one made field goal off the school record for buckets made without a miss - as Mark Montgomery hit 8-of-8 field goals for the Coyotes during the 1982-83 season. Rodney Delgardo (Seattle, Wash. / Spokane CC) had 15 points in the win, with Ben Van Lith adding 10 points and nine rebounds. Jason Brown (Hagerman, Idaho / Whatcom CC) scored nine points off the bench for the Yotes, with Bryden Benke (Caldwell, Idaho / Vallivue HS) tying a career-high with nine rebounds. Evergreen, which lost for the 14th-straight time, got 17 points from Mike DeRosier - hitting 5-of-8 from outside the arc. The Geoducks made just 29-percent of the field goals on the night, while being outboarded 43-26.
GAME RECAP – NORTHWEST 68, C OF I 53: Northwest University used a 26-4 run spanning both halves to pull into a three-way tie atop the CCC, defeating The C of I, 68-53, inside the J.A. Albertson Activities Center. The No. 11 ranked Eagles erased a nine-point first half deficit to complete a season sweep of the Yotes. The Coyotes controlled the first 10 minutes of the game, as a Sydney Donaldson converted a three-point play with 10:20 left in the period, giving The C of I a 21-12 lead. However, NU turned the tide with defensive pressure over the next 15 minutes - forcing seven Coyote turnovers and limiting the hosts to 1-of-12 shooting from the field. Back-to-back treys from Rich Skillman and Ryan Dornik gave the Eagles their first lead at 25-23, part of a 12-0 run, with a Skillman triple at the horn pushing the lead to 32-25. Northwest held the Yotes without a field goal for the first six minutes of the second half, as two Michael Greene baskets and an Ahmaad Cook fast break basket extended the lead to 38-25. A Duncan Koga (Caldwell, Idaho / Caldwell HS) jumper got the Coyotes within 40-31, but three's by Cook and Dornik put the game away for NU. Cook and Jordan Call each scored 13 points in the win, with Skillman and Dornik each tallying 12. The Eagles sealed the win by hitting 16-of-19 free throws in the second half, while holding a 36-26 rebound edge. Donaldson scored a career-high 20 points in the loss for the Coyotes, with Rodney Delgardo scoring 10.
ABOUT THE COACH: Rod Jensen is in his second season as head men's basketball coach at The C of I, recording a record of 21-33 as Coyote head coach. A year ago, his first Coyote team, which had just two returning starters, rallied from a tough start to win 9-of-12 games midway through the season and finish in a tie for fourth in the CCC standings. Jensen came to The C of I after five seasons at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where he served as associate head coach for the last four years. Jensen has earned notoriety as a defensive coach, especially during his 19 years as a coach at Boise State University. From 1983-95, he was the top assistant to head coach, Bobby Dye, helping the Broncos rank among the Top-15 in the NCAA Division I in scoring defense for four-straight seasons, winning Big Sky regular-season championships in 1988 and 1989, along with Big Sky Tournament titles in 1988, 1993, and 1994. BSU teams advanced to the National Invitational Tournament in 1987 and 1991, and the NCAA National Tournament in 1988, 1993, and 1994. In 1995, Jensen became the head coach at Boise State - compiling a 109-93 overall record in seven seasons at the helm - recording the fourth-most wins in BSU history. During his tenure, the Broncos ranked among the NCAA Top-25 in scoring defense in 1998 and 1999, while winning the 1999 Big West East Division Championship. Jensen headed east in 2002, becoming an assistant coach for Pete Gillen at the University of Virginia, where he helped the Cavaliers to NIT appearances in 2003 and 2004 - leading the Atlantic Coast Conference in defensive field goal percentage. In 2005, he headed south to UNC-Greensboro, working for Mike Dement, where during his tenure, every player who exhausted their eligibility, graduated. A graduate of the University of Redlands in California, Jensen began his coaching career at his alma mater in 1980, serving as an assistant for two years, before spending one season at Penn State.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: For more information on The C of I men’s basketball program, head to the official homepage of the Coyotes, http://www.collegeofidaho.edu/mensbasketball.