Thu, 02/17/2011 - 08:24 — Raphielle Johnson
Two of the best players in the Pac-10 will be on display Thursday night, but the paths their respective teams have taken this season are a bit different. Arizona (21-4, 10-2) forward Derrick Williams has become a serious threat to run away with the Pac-10 Player of the Year award, an amazing statement to make considering the play of an Isaiah Thomas at Washington. Washington State's (17-8, 7-6) Klay Thompson has been outstanding as well, but with many postseason honors team success is weighed in the voting process which could have him behind Williams and Thomas in the pecking order.
Fri, 02/11/2011 - 18:51 — Raphielle Johnson
Outperformed, outworked and outclassed. That would sum up what happened to the Connecticut Huskies in the second half at Madison Square Garden, where the St. John's Red Storm built upon the momentum gained from a Malik Boothe buzzer-beater before halftime to win 89-72 in one of their best performances of the season. Just days after scoring 32 points in a losing effort at UCLA, Dwight Hardy once again lived up to his nickname ("Buckets") in scoring a new career-high 33 points and D.J.
Sun, 02/06/2011 - 07:53 — Raphielle Johnson
Heading into Saturday's action the Arizona Wildcats were already up by a game in the Pac-10 standings thanks to their win over Stanford combined with Washington's loss at Oregon State on Thursday night. With a golden opportunity to make themselves the clear favorite to win the regular season title at their fingertips as Washington lost at Oregon earlier in the day, the young Wildcats took a big step in that direction in Berkeley. It's just hard to imagine that anyone involved realized just how much effort would be needed to do so.
Fri, 02/04/2011 - 21:27 — Raphielle Johnson
The crazy nature of the Pac-10 is highlighted by this simple fact: Oregon State, a team who has lost to the likes of Seattle, Texas Southern and Utah Valley this season, is the lone conference team to own wins over both Arizona and Washington. The second of those Pac-10 victories came on Thursday night as the Beavers outscored Washington 36-24 in the second half of the 68-56 victory. Jared Cunningham scored a team-high 19 points and Calvin Haynes added 11 off the bench, but it was the foul and three-point lines that made the difference in Corvallis.
Thu, 02/03/2011 - 10:04 — Raphielle Johnson
Two of the best teams in the Southern Conference meet on Thursday night as defending champion Wofford (12-10, 9-2) hits the road to take on College of Charleston (15-7, 8-2). With neither team having the greatest of computer numbers (RPI: Wofford 147, Charleston 100; SOS: Wofford 166, Charleston 221) both fit the profile of teams who could scare an opponent despite the seed they could get in the NCAA Tournament (can't forget Chattanooga, who leads the North Division with a 9-2 record).
Fri, 01/28/2011 - 19:31 — Raphielle Johnson
Has the torch been passed in the West Coast Conference? While this is an unfair question overall when taking into consideration Gonzaga's decade of dominance, it certainly isn't in regards to this season. Mickey McConnell capped an outstanding performance with a tough shot with ten seconds remaining to give Saint Mary's the 73-71 victory in Spokane, dropping the Bulldogs to 3-3 in WCC play. McConnell finished with 27 points, six assists and four rebounds while backcourt partner Matthew Dellavedova added 15 points and five assists in their first victory at Gonzaga since 1995.
Fri, 01/21/2011 - 20:13 — Raphielle Johnson
One sequence, featuring Darnell Gant and Isaiah Thomas, summed up the second half for the Washington Huskies last night.
The series of events that would underline the Huskies' pulling away in an 85-68 victory began with Gant forcing a bad pass inside to Aziz N'Diaye, resulting in a turnover. But instead of sulking and lazily getting back on defense, Gant hustled to the other end and blocked a Kevin Parrom shot...which was then kept inbounds by a diving Thomas. Wait for one of the premier point guards in America to get back into play...give him the ball and watch him go to work.
Thu, 01/20/2011 - 10:03 — Raphielle Johnson
The game of the night on Thursday takes place in the Pacific Northwest as Arizona (15-3, 4-1) takes on Washington (13-4, 5-1) in Seattle. Before the season began these were the two teams many people expected to be atop the Pac-10 standings at season's end and thus far both have lived up to those expectations. Also on display will be two of the best players in the country, including a sophomore power forward that has proven to be near unstoppable for much of the season.
Fri, 01/14/2011 - 18:11 — Raphielle Johnson
Minnesota went into Thursday night's game against #8 Purdue in need of a victory and thanks to Blake Hoffarber and some solid late-game defense the mission was accomplished. Hoffarber's 26 points led the way offensively and the Golden Gophers managed to hold the Boilermakers without a field goal for the last nine minutes in a 70-67 victory in Minneapolis. JaJaun Johnson led all scorers with 29 points to go with 11 rebounds while Lewis Jackson added 15, but Purdue was unable to overcome the rough shooting night of E'Twaun Moore.
Thu, 01/13/2011 - 08:59 — Raphielle Johnson
If Minnesota (12-4, 1-3) is to entertain any thoughts of being a top five team in the Big Ten Thursday night is a game they must have. Visiting "The Barn" is #8 Purdue (15-1, 4-0), a team that's performed much better than some expected in the preseason when forward Robbie Hummel went down with a torn ACL. The two biggest reasons why Matt Painter's team is ranked in the Top 10 are seniors JaJuan Johnson (19.4 ppg, 8.3 rpg) and E'Twaun Moore (18.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg), two players who have played at an All-Big Ten level for much of the season to date.