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Archive for December 2007

Zag recap, and a ton more

Lots of analysis, quotes, stats and links if you click on extended entry below.

Batting leadoff, though, is the S-R’s John Blanchette, took a big-picture look at the Zags’ latest loss. He discusses GU’s defensive lapses, inconsistencies of several players and why Micah Downs played just 12 minutes. (Go to previous post for the S-R game story.)

Programming note: Blanchette visited with GU assistant and ex-Utah head coach Ray Giacoletti and will have a column in Monday’s S-R. GU takes on Giacoletti’s old team, Utah, at 5 p.m. Monday.

Onward for more (Warning: This will be a long post — longer for me since I’m on dial-up!)

Gonzaga drops to 9-4

Gonzaga dropped its second consecutive game, falling to Tennessee 82-72 Saturday at KeyArena.

Click on extended entry for an unedited game story.

A few notes: Robert Sacre made his first start. He played 10 minutes and didn’t score. In fact, two GU starters, Sacre and Micah Downs, didn’t score. A third, Jeremy Pargo, didn’t score until 6:30 remained in the second half.

Josh Heytvelt scored 12 points in 24 minutes and looked much more comfortable in his second game back from a stress fracture.

GU’s 18 turnovers were within one of its season high (19 vs. Texas Tech). The Zags stayed in it with 17 offensive rebounds, which led to a 19-11 edge in second-chance points, and by getting to the foul line, where they were 21 of 28.


A look back at WSU’s final nonconference game

COUGARS

We gave you most everything last night, so let’s get to the links without hesitation. Then we’ll give you a peek at the week ahead.

Thrilling, if ugly, GSL basketball game

Happy Holidays and welcome back to Greater Spokane League basketball following a week’s hiatus. I’m still on vacation, but took in the Central Valley-University doubleheader to compare teams that figured to finish one behind the other in the upper division of both boys and girls leagues.

CV’s boys won 71-70 on a free throw with one second left, but it was one of those ugly games where two teams in a hurry to get somewhere actually wind up going nowhere.

Chiefs open second half with win

CRANBROOK, British Columbia – The Spokane Chiefs were a give-and-take team in opening the second half of the Western Hockey League season on Friday night.

They gave little, and took a lot. Read on for highlights.

Easy first half for Cougars

In Washington State and North Carolina A&T, we see two teams that don’t mind a slow game. Still, it was the No. 4 Cougars who controlled the pace. With a halftime score of 33-12, that should be evident.

Eags wrap up non-conference schedule against Gauchos

Eastern Washington University’s men’s basketball team, which is currently riding a three-game winning streak, plays its final non-conference game of the season tonight against UC Santa Barbara.

You can read more on the Eagles here, and more on the Gauchos here.

And if you want to weigh in on the timing of this game — sandwiched, as it is, between last Saturday’s huge win over Portland State in the Big Sky opener for both teams and upcoming home games against conference foes Northern Arizona (Thursday) and Sacramento State (next Saturday) — feel free.

Snowy morning in the Palouse

COUGARS

The last day of basketball’s nonconference season dawned cold – and snow covered. I opened the door here in Pullman this morning and was greeted with a couple of fingers of snow.

Thank goodness I don’t have to go anywhere until this evening, when I have to travel up the hill for the North Carolina A&T game. For a link to my advance – and other links – clink on.

GU on the mend

Gonzaga isn’t completely healthy, but it is getting closer. Matt Bouldin (calf, ankle) is probably the biggest concern, but he’s expected to play against Tennessee on Saturday and forward Josh Heytvelt will have the benefit of eight days between the Oklahoma and Tennessee games.

For a look at tomorrow’s S-R article tonight, click below for an unedited Gonzaga notebook.

We’ll be back in the morning to post some of Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl’s thoughts and the GU-Tennessee preview before flying over to Seattle.

Eags’ Williams BSC ‘s player of the week

Eastern Washington’s senior forward Kellen Williams has been named the Big Sky Conference’s men’s basketball player of the week.

You can read more here, and stay tuned for a feature story on Williams that is scheduled to run in next week’s S-R.

Only a week until the Pac-10

COUGARS • UPDATED: 1:45 P.M.

Think about this. A week from today, the Pac-10 season starts. For everyone but the Cougars and the Huskies, of course, who kick off their conference season a week from Saturday. This weekend, everyone plays, from WSU hosting North Carolina A&T on Friday to Oregon State bringing in Montana State on Sunday. The best game? Probably Arizona traveling to No. 2 Memphis.

There is plenty to read this morning, so click on …

Blackwater toast of the tribe

Back in November, I made the hike up to Alberta for the first part of the Spokane Chiefs five-game swing through the Central Division.

The trip kicked off about six large cups of coffee and eight hours later, when we arrived in Standoff, Alberta. There, members of the Blood Tribe reservation held an event to honor one of their own - Judd Blackwater, the third Blood Tribe member to play in the Western Hockey League. Here’s the story that came out of that, which ran in today’s A section, on page 9.

EWU players await word on new coach

As the search for their next head coach stretches into late December — and quite possibly into next year — many of Eastern Washington’s returning football players are getting a bit anxious.

You can read the story that ran in this morning’s S-R here.

In addition, Dave Trimmer caught up with former Eagles’ basketball star and first-round NBA draft pick Rodney Stuckey and filed this story.

At least we’re not traveling from North Carolina

COUGARS

The day after Christmas has a name, doesn’t it? Something about boxes or something.

It should be called Snowplowing Day around here. Because that’s the only way to get around. Behind a snowplow.

Sorenson makes mark his way

Never thought I’d be blogging on Christmas Day, but the presents have been opened, only two items need to be exchanged and most of kids’ stuff that required assembly has been assembled.

So, we’ll post our feature story on GU third-year walk-on Andrew Sorenson, an impressive individual with an unfailingly positive attitude and outlook. Perhaps like everybody who comes across Sorenson, my mood was immediately better at the conclusion of an hour-long interview.

Below, more Sorenson notes that weren’t in the article. And here are the latest rankings — GU fell out of both polls.


Only one more day to buy that perfect gift

COUGARS

It’s Christmas Eve and, if you’re at work, my sympathies. You should be out shopping for that last-minute gift, just like everyone else in America. Me too. But I’m not sure what to get.

See the gift is Cougar-related. Read on for my question, and for links to Sunday’s blowout of Idaho State.

A good half for Low

COUGARS

WSU isn’t shooting exceptionally well - less than 50 percent. But Derrick Low is and that’s enough for a 34-20 halftime lead in Pocatello against Idaho State.

Low, who hasn’t been scoring much lately - his last double figure game was against Air Force in Spokane - hit 5 of 8 3-pointers in the opening half and has 16 points. His shooting has allowed the Cougars to overcome early foul trouble - Aron Baynes, Robbie Cowgill and Nik Koprivica all have two fouls - and still lead handily.

Eastern digs out upset win in Big Sky opener

Eastern opened the Big Sky Conference basketball season by upsetting Portland State Saturday night at Reese Court.

You can read an unedited version of the game story that will appear in Sunday’s S-R by clicking on the extended entry line below.

Harmeling out for a while

COUGARS

After spending most of my afternoon on the phone, I was able to confirm that Daven Harmeling broke his right thumb at practice Friday, and could be out somewhere around four weeks.

This won’t help with the Cougars nearing their toughest stretch of the season – opening the Pac-10 season early next month with games on the road against UW, USC and UCLA. Read on for the updated story.

WSU on the road Sunday - again

COUGARS

After perusing the web rather diligently and not being able to find WSU mentioned anywhere significant, I decided to switch gears, finish up my advance for tomorrow’s paper and then post it here.

So you get the first look at what will appear tomorrow in The Spokesman-Review. The game time is 1:05 in Spokane, and is available on the usual radio spots. Read on for the advance.

GSL Friday night basketball

Gonzaga Prep maybe mainly juniors and sophomores, but the boys are for real in Greater Spokane League basketball (they should be, I picked them eighth and low picks are a sure sign of a high finish).

The Bullpups scored more than 70 for the fourth time so far this season and are now 5-1 overall. But they’re still chasing Ferris and Shadle Park. See the complete story below.

EWU coaching search on hold?

I tried again to contact Eastern Washington athletics director Bill Chaves today and learned that he has, indeed, left town and is presumed by other athletic department staffers to be headed back to Texas, where he is still in the process of selling his home and moving his family to Cheney.

Chaves is not due back until Dec. 31, which would suggest he probably won’t announced the hiring of his new football coach until after the first of the year.

Read all about it

A sampling of articles from Thursday’s Gonzaga-Oklahoma game. Click below.

WSU-Citadel post-game video

Here’s post-game comments from Tony Bennett, Taylor Rochestie, Robbie Cowgill and Citadel coach Ed Conroy.

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Cougs reign in Seattle

My original post apparently didn’t go through, so I’m trying again.

Yes, the Cougs won. Here’s a link to my short gamer. Vince’s is on its way.

As is post-game video.

Cougs inconsistent in first half

The sixth-ranked Cougars opened the first half tonight looking like just that: sixth-ranked. Charging out to a 13-0 lead over The Citadel, the experienced Cougars were confident and deliberate.

As one might expect. The Bulldogs have just one senior and one junior on their team — the rest are freshmen (and one redshirt freshman).

But after a Citadel timeout six minutes into the game, the young guys surprised WSU with a 13-0 run of their own. They tied it up 13-13, and Tony Bennett had a little talk with his men.

What you can expect tonight

COUGARS

Being stuck in an airport does give me some time to write, which is what I decided to do this morni … I mean afternoon.

If you read on, you’ll find what I believe will happen tonight as WSU hosts The Citadel at Key Arena. You can see it on Fox Sports Northwest starting at 7:30.

Game-day reading

Before we get to notes/links below, you’ve probably noticed there is no dateline on the GU-OU preview. This is the one game I won’t be staffing during the ‘07-‘08 season.

Why? You’ll recall we went through layoffs and had budget issues a few months ago, about the time we were planning our GU travel. Numerous scenarios were discussed, but to make a long story short, this game (one-game trip, unranked foe) was the one we chose to hire a correspondent. Likewise, we’ll have a correspondent cover the upcoming WSU-Idaho State game in Pocatello.

I’ve already booked the rest of GU’s road trips.

Onward for notes, quotes and links.


Refreshed WSU to face Citadel

COUGARS

As I promised this morning, here is the unedited version of my advance for tomorrow.

We’ll be in Seattle for the game and will post in the morning as well as prior to the game.

Big Sky basketball race hard to predict

Eastern Washington and Portland State will kick off the Big Sky Conference men’s basketball season Saturday night at Reese Court.

First-year Eagles coach Kirk Earlywine admits to being a bit uncertain about what to expect during this year’s title race.

You can read an unedited version of the short Big Sky preview story that will appear in Thursday morning’s S-R — along with brief summaries on each of the league’s nine teams by clicking on the extended entry line below.

Long layoff almost over

COUGARS

In Day 10 of Cougar Basketball Held Hostage, the plucky Washington State men’s team travels to Seattle for a day of interviews, events and the like before finally being released tomorrow before the West Side public.

The Cougar Hardwood Classic, which will be televised by FSN if you can’t get to Seattle, ends a string of 11 days without a game for the seventh-ranked Cougars. It also is a chance for Seattle-area WSU fans to see the team live, and they seem to be turning out. The Cougars expect a crowd of more than 10,000.

Bears clamp down

The rich got richer with the return to full strength of Ferris’ roster, although the addition of DeAngelo Casto wasn’t needed, Central Valley won a key game on the road against LC and the contenders - Shadle Park and Gonzaga Prep kept pace with the Saxons in Tuesday GSL basketball.

See my story below:

Casto cleared to play

DeAngelo Casto is eligible to play basketball at Ferris.
Mike Colbrese of the WIAA ruled that Casto had demonstrated a hardship that was unique to him and worthy of eligibility beyond the argument of his attorney Ray Clary of his status as McKinney-Vento homeless student.
Casto could play tonight at East Valley. He has practiced with the Saxons all season but spent the first six games on the bench in street clothes. Click here for an early version of the story.

More on the CBL

Columbia Basin League schools did indeed opt to move up from 3A to 4A on Monday which throws the 3A classification on this side of the Cascades into a turmoil.

“It will effect us drastically,” said Mt. Spokane activities coordinator John Miller, currently attending a national conference. The Wildcats have said that if there is no viable 3A classification in eastern Washington, they too would opt up.

Eags win second straight by dumping Portland

Eastern Washington’s men’s basketball team is on its first winning streak of the season, thanks to Monday night’s 84-75 non-conference home win over Portland.

You can read an unedited version of the game story that will appear in Tueday morning’s S-R by clicking on the extended entry line below.

Gray sparks GU

Click below for an unedited Gonzaga-Northern Colorado game story.

Bouldin hurts ankle

A quick note or two before tip-off at the McCarthey Athletic Center.

Guard Matt Bouldin sprained his ankle, apparently on Friday, and didn’t participate in warmups. It’s doubtful he’ll play. It’s the same ankle he hurt early in the season. He played through that injury.

Bouldin was replaced by Larry Gurganious in the starting lineup.

L.A. story

Ronny Turiaf and the Lakers got the best of the Clippers and Dan Dickau and Richie Frahm on Sunday.

Dickau had 10 points, Frahm 5 and Turiaf zero, though he did attempt a 3-pointer in his two minutes of playing time. Dickau and Frahm each played 23 minutes. Game story here and box score here.

—Coaches can find trouble if they look past opponents, but we have some immunity here. Oklahoma, which faces GU on Thursday in Oklahoma City, had five players in double figures en route to a big win over Arkansas. Read more here.

GU entertains Northern Colorado tonight at 5. We’ll post the game story 60-90 minutes after the final buzzer.

EWU assistant Wade wants to lead Eagles

Longtime Eastern Washington University assistant Joe Wade has spoken to the school’s athletics director about his interest in becoming the Eagles next head football coach.

You can read an unedited version of the story the will appear in Monday morning’s S-R by clicking on the extended entry line below.

Look, it’s a partridge in that pear tree

COUGARS

Let’s see, what presents do we have for you less than 10 days before Christmas? Two turtle doves? No, we’ve got links to football stories – a West Side kid committed – and a fun little fantasy piece.

Plus the most in-depth story about Paul Wulff you’ll ever read.

Chiefs fall to Americans

This was definitely not part of the plan – not that losing ever is.

But it would be tough to argue that there was a game that the Spokane Chiefs wanted to win more than they did on Saturday night prior to their two-week holiday break.

Pretty quiet on the football front

COUGARS

Let’s get right to it on the final day of the last open football recruiting period of 2007 (though the dead period begins Monday, tomorrow is a quiet period, which means recruits can be on campus, but contact off is prohibited).

Top-ranked CdA girls win easily

Click the tab below to read by unedited story from the Coeur d’Alene/Lake City girls basketball game Friday.

Tigers take their cue

Lewis and Clark was ragged as expected, considering there are seven football players on the team and the Tigers were playing only their second basketball game of the season while others have played as many as six.

But the big game by junior post Sean Hoffman and that will-to-win carryover from football combined in Friday’s 61-51 win at North Central, which had gotten off to a surprising 3-1 start.

EWU’s McAndrews earns academic honor

Eastern Washington’s senior tight end Tom McAndrews has been selected to the FCS Athletics Directors Association Academic All-Star team that was announced today.

In addition, he is one of eight finalists for the organization’s $5,000 postgraduate scholarship award.

You can read more details here.

Coaches hit the road to meet with recruits

COUGARS • UPDATED: 12:15 P.M.

Good morning. A little snow fell overnight. The roads are a little slick. It’s on those slick highways the new WSU coaching staff is traveling today, recruiting.

They have today, tomorrow and Sunday. The dead period begins on the 17th. Not a lot of time to get a lot accomplished.

UPDATE: It’s official: Mike Levenseller is part of Wulff’s staff, though, just like everyone else, the role he will play will be announced later.

Chiefs trade Kuemper

The Spokane Chiefs have traded 17-year-old goaltender Darcy Kuemper to the Red Deer Rebels for a conditional draft pick in the 2009 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft.

Kuemper was the Chiefs third-round pick, 45th overall, in the 2005 draft and was on the Chiefs 50-player protected list. He is currently playing with the Saskatoon Blazers of the Saskatchewan AAA Midget Hockey League.

Seattle Times All-State

Lewis and Clark’s Alex Shaw has been named Seattle Times 4A Player of the Year and Mead’s Dan Spitz has joined him on its All-State football team (all-classifications).

Clippers sign Frahm

Former Zag Richie Frahm has signed with the L.A. Clippers where he’ll join another ex-GU standout, Dan Dickau.

More on Frahm here and more on Dickau’s big night (16 points, 4 3-pointers) in a loss last night here.

Changes a plenty in Pullman

COUGARS

Just a real quick post because I’m actually taking a day off – to spend in doctors’ offices. Anyhow, there are a couple links on the next page.

Kramer, Rosey and Baldwin interested in EWU job

Not that it means anything to Bill Chaves, the man conducting the search, but three coaches with past ties to Eastern Washington University have expressed an interest in returning to Cheney to take over the Eagles head coaching job.

You can read an unedited version of the story that will appear in Thursday morning’s S-R by clicking on the extended entry line below.

Krause honored by alma mater

Gonzaga director of basketball operations Jerry Krause will be honored by his alma mater, Wayne State, with an alumni achievement award this weekend.

Click here for more.

Also, ex-Zag Dan Dickau had a season-high 11 points as the Clippers beat the Nets.

Ferris tops Shadle in dandy

Ferris transition and ability to post its guards for easy baskets spelled the difference in Tuesday’s 71-66 victory over Shadle Park in an entertaining Greater Spokane League boys basketball showdown.

The Saxons built an early 8-point lead and led 41-29 in the first minute of the third quarter, before the Highlanders came back for a 58-57 advantage with 4:10 remaining.

Then Erick Cheadle made three free throws and Shadle missed a couple of ill-timed 3-point shots as Ferris ran off 9 straight points for the win.

While Ferris was getting inside, Shadle took 26 3-pointers and made 7.

Ulmer helps Austria to win

Spokane Chiefs import defenseman Stefan Ulmer and Team Austria are 2-0 at the IIHF Division IA U-20 World Championships after a 5-0 win over Norway on Monday and a 6-1 win over Poland in their opening game on Sunday.

Wulff’s departure draws varied reactions from players

Several of Eastern Washington returning football players reacted in a variety of ways on Tuesday to Paul Wulff’s decision to take over as Washington State’s next football coach.

You can read an unedited version of the story that will appear in Wednesday morning’s S-R by clicking on the extended entry line below.

The only meaningful comment included from EWU’s new athletic director Bill Chaves concerning the search for Wulff’s successor is that he won’t have any additional comments until a new coach is hired.

All-Idaho teams announced

Click the tab below to see the area players named to the All-Idaho (all-state) football teams.

Five EWU assistants will follow Wulff to Pullman

Sources have confirmed that five members of Paul Wulff’s Eastern Washington University football coaching staff — including both coordinators — will accompany him to Pullman when he takes over as Washington State’s new head coach.

Read more details here.

Tonight’s the night

Ferris and Shadle Park, who in the early going appear the clear top-two boys in Greater Spokane League basketball square off tonight.

Who will win? I’m sure you all have your thoughts out there - some have already been expressed. The matchups are intriguing, the teams so much alike.

Chiefs remain atop WHL poll

For the sixth time in as many weeks, the Spokane Chiefs are the Western Hockey League’s top-ranked team.

Receiving 17 of 18 first-place votes for 395 total points, the U.S. Division-leading Chiefs remained atop the WHL writer’s poll released Monday by the Western Major Junior Hockey Writer’s Association.

Read on for the rest of the release, a link and a quick note on this week’s schedule.

Big win over Bulldogs doesn’t mean much in polls

COUGARS

The newest basketball rankings are out, with WSU remaining in sixth in the ESPN/USA Today poll and moving up to seventh in the AP. In the AP rankings, UCLA is eighth, Oregon 16, Gonzaga 19 and Arizona 21. USC, Stanford and Cal all received votes.

Snow blankets the Palouse

COUGARS

Good morning. The sun has decided not to make an appearance here in Pullman, though the snow certainly has. Getting around won’t be easy today. Which probably adds another six days on the coaching search.

There is some basketball news, stories from last night’s game, and a couple of football stories to link to. Read on.

Post-game interviews with Cougars

Here’s my post-game video from WSU’s win over Portland State on Sunday. The Cougars didn’t think they played very well. But they won anyway. Tony Bennett and others talk here.

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Vandals push past Eastern

Eastern Washington’s men’s basketball team had trouble finding ways to score once again on Sunday, falling to Idaho 58-49 in a non-conference game played in Moscow.

You can read more about here.

More - and less - names and some thoughts

COUGARS • UPDATED 1:15 P.M.

The biggest news from yesterday in the ongoing coaching search includes the interview of one candidate – Paul Wulff – and the dropping of another – Mike Price.

Read on for news on both. And tonight’s basketball game.

GU improves to 8-2

Click below for an unedited Gonzaga-Cal State Northridge game story.

WSU interviews Paul Wulff

We learned Saturday morning that Eastern football coach Paul Wulff interviewed with Washington State on Friday night. Read the story here with updates sure to come.

Great game between LC-Mead

The expected girls powers in the Greater Spokane League put on an entertaining show Friday night. Two-time state champion Lewis and Clark held off host Mead 52-48 thanks a bunch to Oregon State-bound Brittany Kennedy, 17 points and a defensive masterpiece.

But the future is bright for the Panthers.
Sophomore Jazzy Redmon, who had her coming out at state last March, was hard to stop, leading Panthers rebounders, going coast-to-coast or hitting the 3-ball and scoring 23. She is one of three sophomores and a freshman in Mead’s lineup. In two games now, frosh Taylor Ingebritsen has scored in double figures, scoring 12 of her 14 in the second half.

My story follows:

Chiefs looking to get back to humble hockey

The concept behind the Spokane Chiefs success so far has been pretty simple – play humble hockey, see success on the ice.

It’s not only simple, it has worked.

Four from Sky on Camp All-America team

Eastern Washington
The Big Sky Conference put four players on the 2007 Walter Camp Football Championship Subdivision All-America team that was announced today, but none of them were from Eastern Washington.

You can read more details and find a link to the complete team here.

WSU moving forward with candidate interviews

COUGARS

Oklahoma co-offensive coordinator Kevin Sumlin interviewed in Pullman today and all indications are he impressed athletic director Jim Sterk and the group he met with.

Also, sources confirmed John L. Smith interviewed Thursday and is also a viable candidate. You can find out more about Sumlin and Smith here.

One week and mat turmoil

First week of Greater Spokane League wrestling is over and already there’s turmoil.
League favorites Central Valley and University were both dumped, the Bears by East Valley, 29-28, the Titans by Mead 35-29.
So - The Knights (2-0) have the early lead, along with Mt. Spokane. Mead, CV, U-Hi,Ferris, Rogers and Shadle Park are all 1-1
As I said in my pre-season preview - don’t be surprised if the league champion has a loss, if not more.

Chiefs hold on to No. 2 ranking in CHL poll

The Spokane Chiefs remain second in the Canadian Hockey League top ten rankings for week 11 of the 2007-08 season and have the highest rank of four WHL teams.

We witnessed women’s hoop history

Those of us who followed high school women’s basketball closely over the past decade or so were treated to an exceptional wealth of talent. We got spoiled even. It may have peaked last year when eight signed with Division I colleges, bringing to 14 the number currently playing beyond high school.

Dave Trimmer’s Women’s College notebook in The Spokesman-Review on Wednesday, addressed the phenomenon - and though there still are D-I athletes playing - wondered if it has peaked for the time being. Scoring in the GSL seems to be down this year.

Jayhawks pound road-weary Eags

It didn’t go well for Eastern Washington’s men’s basketball team in Lawrence, Kan., Thursday night as No. 3-ranked Kansas buried the Eags 85-47.

You can read the Associated Press game story that ran in the S-R here, or check out the story filed on EWU’s website here.

In addition …

WSU fans watching at Beasley

I did a video the other day on Zags fans camping out for Wednesday’s basketball game against WSU, so I decided to do a video on WSU fans watching the game at Beasley Coliseum. The university set up a giant screen in Beasley (where they were setting up for fall graduation) for the WSU fans who couldn’t make it to the Kennel — so, most of them.

It was dark, so sorry about the lighting.

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Washington State’s defense hold Zags down

It’s been a while since anyone has dominated Gonzaga defensively as well as Washington State did Wednesday night at the McCarthey Athletic Center.

Eleven years in fact. That’s the last time Gonzaga scored as few as the 47 it did in a 51-47 home defeat at the hands of the Cougars. Read on for the early game story.

Basketball thoughts

Lewis and Clark boys basketball doesn’t hit the court until everyone else’s fifth game of the Greater Spokane League season (minus byes) on Tuesday.

They and me may be late to the party because of that little business of winning a state football championship, but the Tigers girls face Mead tomorrow, 7:15 p.m., in an early season showdown between the two top league picks. The two-time defending champions already knocked off University.

Zags-Cougs series

The Gonzaga-Washington State game is on the books for at least one more year and both programs seem very much in favor of continuing the series. Next year’s game returns to Pullman.

Jerry Krause, director of basketball operations for GU, handles the Zags’ scheduling.

“My understanding is that he’s been in contact (with WSU),” Gonzaga A.D. Mike Roth said. “This is a great thing that you want to keep on the campuses. It’s a special atmosphere.”

Said WSU’s Tony Bennett: “It’s great preparation for our conferences. For the east side of the state, it’s very good. I would hope it would continue.”

For more ink on GU-WSU, click below.

Chiefs reap rewards, collect another victory

A sweet November has set the tone for a good start in December for the Spokane Chiefs.

Tuesday included two individual honors and two more points in the standings for the Western Hockey League’s top team.

Zags-Cougs advance

Click below for an unedited preview article on the Gonzaga-Washington State basketball game.

There’ll be some notes tacked on at the bottom.

Bowman, Tokarski earn awards

It was a sweet November for the Spokane Chiefs, and not surprisingly, the awards keep rolling in - this time for two Spokane players.

Dustin Tokarski was named the Canadian Hockey League’s Goaltender of the Week and sniper Drayson Bowman earned the Western Hockey League Player of the month award.

Read on for the releases.

“60 Minutes on line three”

COUGARS

One of the realities of working in a smaller media market is you’re not at the top of the list for call backs, especially from national organizations. That’s just the way it is – who would you answer if your assistant said “New York Times on line one, The Spokesman-Review on line two.” Not much of a choice, is it? – and you get used to it. But it slows the process some times.

That being said, here are some stories from around the West that might interest you.

Gonzaga students camp out for WSU game

Some of them started more than a week before this Wednesday’s basketball game - the anticipated match-up between No. 8 Washington State and No. 17 Gonzaga. I ventured out to McCarthey Athletic Center on Monday to see how these die-hard fans were doing.

Get the Flash Player to see this video.

Shock make roster moves

More signings and another departure for the AFL.

That sums up what’s gone on for the Spokane Shock in the past week. Read on for the releases.

Carroll headed back to title game

The Carroll College Fighting Saints football team is headed back to the NAIA championship game.

Read more about Carroll and former Coeur d’Alene High running back Gabe Le by clicking the tab below.

Hail the Tigers

Covering a state championship is always special and it’s been quite a year for the Greater Spokane League.
There were two 4A basketball titlists, a 4A softball winner, 4A and 3A cross country boys champions, first and second in 4A volleyball and now Lewis and Clark’s 4A state football title.

Let it snow, let it snow

COUGARS • UPDATE: 4:20 P.M.; 7:35 P.M.

How is your Sunday? Are you under about a half-foot of snow like us? Instead of shoveling the driveway, I’m telling Kim I have to post. At least for the next six hours – or until after the Hawks’ game ends, whichever comes first. The snow will have to wait. It’s going to rain Monday anyway, right? It will all disappear down the drain. (I really hope the guys clearing U.S. Highway 195 don’t have the same philosophy.)

Anyhow, here are the links from today. There’s not a lot. But there are a few. Then I’ve got some thoughts about the football I watched last night.

Bengals beat Vandals in overtime

Idaho State’s 71-69 OT defeat of Idaho was a thrilling game to watch. Both teams battled to the end, and the Vandals overcame a dismal first half to bring themselves back into the game.

Below is my game story, which is a few more sentences complete than the one that appears in the newspaper. This is because an 8 p.m. tip-off (30 minutes later than scheduled), an overtime-induced 10:20 p.m. ending and my 10:30 p.m. deadline makes for a shorter article. I also included some game notes.

Eastern fights to end in playoff loss

BOONE, N.C. – Eastern’s spectacular late-season run ended Saturday afternoon, but not without a fight. Here is my game story. Let us know your thoughts on the game.

Zags top UConn, 85-82

BOSTON _ In a back-and-forth second half, Gonzaga took the lead for good on David Pendergraft’s free throw with 2:04 left and went on to an 85-82 win over UConn on Saturday at the Hartford Hall of Fame Showcase.

Jeremy Pargo had 23 points, equaling his career high, and Matt Bouldin added 18 - 16 in the second half - as GU recovered from an early 10-point deficit.

UConn had a chance to tie, but A.J. Price’s 3-pointer was off line to the right.

We’ll have the game story up in about 90 minutes.

It’s even colder in Medicine Hat

Good morning hockey hounds. Just lounging around in Medicine Hat waiting for game time, so I thought I’d catch up with some notes and a link.

I’ve got a long trek home tomorrow, and believe me - I wish I could stay for the rest of the Central trip. But duty (prep sports and desk work) calls back home. Click below for the goods.

Morning sweep

Some links and notes with the UConn-GU game coming up this afternoon. Click below.

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Jim Allen (@srjimallen) Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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