by Zachary Knecht
Featured Image: Photo by Weber State Athletics
Weber State Eastern Washington Recap
The Weber State Wildcats fall short of spoiling Eastern Washington’s undefeated conference record, falling to the Eagles 75-71. On the road, the ‘Cats gave the Big Sky’s top team a run for their money, showing they can compete with anyone anywhere.
The loss puts Weber State back at .500 at 11-11, staying at #3 in the Big Sky at 6-3; Eastern Washington’s magical run continues to 10-0 in the conference and 16-7 on the year.
Dillon Jones and Steven Verplancken Jr. were the main beneficiaries of Weber State’s offense in Saturday night’s contest. The duo combined for 34 points and were a vital factor in their second-half offensive explosion. Though they saw success in shooting from the field (12-25), they struggled to convert from beyond the three-point line (3-12).
Junior Ballard was a solid scoring option from off the bench. He shot three of five from deep on his way to a 12-point night. Despite being on the floor for only 20 minutes, the senior guard made his presence known in the team’s toughest obstacle.
Angelo Allegri was the story of the night for the Eagles. The man couldn’t miss, hitting ten of his 12 attempts from the field, including a ridiculous six of eight from three. His 28 points propelled Eastern Washington to a victory and Big Sky Player of the Week.
The only fault in Weber State’s game Saturday was their rebounding. In their recent performances, the Wildcats have done a great job of winning this battle or at least keeping it close, but they were utterly dominated in the paint against Eastern Washington. The Eagles rebounded the ball 36 times to a meager 22 for Weber State.
Part of this was because of Eastern Washington’s success limiting Jones. The star forward, averaging nearly 11 rebounds on the season, was held to seven. Jones has been the reason Weber State has kept up with teams in this category, and his – and the team’s – drought in boards was a large reason for their demise.
Other than rebounding, the Wildcats played a solid two halves of basketball. They shot well from the field and free-throw line, didn’t turn the ball over much and passed the ball well, but the Eagles did the same. It was nearly an even matchup against the conference’s top dog, and the ‘Cats deserve all the credit for the competition. This is a team that fell flat to start the season and climbed out of the hole to become a contender in the Big Sky. Hopefully, the second half of this season will treat them just as well.
What’s to Come
Weber State will stay on the road, dueling against the Idaho State Bengals Saturday to kick off the second half of conference play.
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|Weber State Starters||PTS||REB||AST||FG||3PT||MIN|
|Dillon Jones, F||18||7||4||6-13||1-5||37|
|Steven Verplancken Jr., G||16||3||2||6-12||2-7||38|
|Dyson Koehler, F||9||1||1||4-5||1-1||26|
|Alex Tew, C||7||3||1||3-4||0-0||23|
|KJ Cunningham, G||5||3||2||2-5||1-4||25|
|Junior Ballard, G||12||0||1||3-6||3-5||20|
|Zahir Porter, G||4||3||1||1-5||1-2||15|
|Daniel Rouzan, F||0||1||0||0-1||0-0||10|
|Louie Jordan, F||0||0||0||0-0||0-0||1|
|Handje Tamba, C||0||0||0||0-0||0-0||5|
|Eastern Washington Starters||PTS||REB||AST||FG||3PT||MIN|
|Angelo Allegri, F||28||5||3||10-12||6-8||36|
|Steele, Venters, G||12||4||2||3-13||2-10||35|
|Tyreese Davis, G||6||8||3||3-5||0-1||30|
|Ethan Price, F||5||2||1||2-9||0-0||26|
|Casey Jones, F||2||1||1||1-1||0-6||22|
|Cedric Coward, F||11||11||4||5-6||1-2||29|
|Dane Erikstrup, F||6||4||0||2-6||2-4||14|
|Deon Stroud, G||4||0||0||2-2||0-0||6|
|Ellis Magnuson, G||0||0||0||0-0||0-0||2|