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Earlywine resolves “personal matter,” returns to bench

No one at Eastern Washington University is talking publicly about the “personal matter” that prevented Kirk Earlywine, the Eagles’ second-year head men’s basketball coach, from attending Monday night’s 57-48 road to Boise State University in Boise.

 

 

But EWU athletic director Bill Chaves said Earlywine has “resolved his personal issue,” and would rejoin the team in Phoenix, Ariz., late Tuesday evening and coach in Friday night’s Big Sky Conference matchup against Northern Arizona that tips off at 6:05 in Flagstaff, Ariz.

 

 

Chaves and Earlywine both refused to comment further on the matter when reached by phone. But Earlywine, who watched Monday night’s game via a Boise State webcast and spent some time in his office in Cheney on Tuesday, said he expected to fly into Phoenix late Tuesday evening and conduct Wednesday and Thursday practice sessions with his team, which flew directly from Boise to Phoenix on Tuesday.

 

 

Earlywine did comment, however, on the difficulty of having to watch his team play over the internet, instead of from the bench. “It was hard to sit and watch my team last night,” he admitted, “but I was really encouraged. It’s almost comical to say that when you only score 48 points, shoot 30 percent from the field and miss as many free throws as we did. But I thought our physical effort last night was terrific, and that’s encouraging. “If we defend that hard and rebound like that against Big Sky opponents, we’re going to be O.K. Of course, we’ve got to find a way to make that happen night in and night out. And we can’t shoot 30 percent and miss throws, too.”


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