A GRIP ON SPORTS
Numbers are a key aspect of any sport. From batting average to touchdowns scored, players are evaluated based on their numbers. It's serious business. But numbers can also be fun. And can lead to some odd occurrences. Such an odd occurrence occurred last night (and just a second ago, when I typed words with back-to-back "r"s in them, only the third time I've done that in my career). Read on.
• Kim and I attended Gonzaga's 97-62 shellacking of Idaho at the McCarthey Athletic Center last night, a game highlighted by Jazmine Redmon's career-high 11 assists. A pretty impressive number made even more so considering the junior from Mead High played just 23 minutes. But here's where the odd part comes in. This morning I open Greg Lee's story of Mead's 75-53 Greater Spokane League win over Ferris last night and what do I see in the third paragraph? "Senior point guard Jade Redmon was at the top of Mead’s giving tree as she dished out 10 assists ..." Two sisters, playing in games starting a half-hour apart and they combine for 21 assists? There is no way Jazmine (at left in picture) knew her little sister had posted 10 earlier in the night, is there? And then went out and put up one more? I know sisters can be competitive – after all, I grew up with two – but that begs believability. It just had to be a happy coincidence (though I guess not-so-happy of you happen to root for Idaho or Ferris), didn't it? I don't know about Jade (at right in picture), but Jazmine's 11 assists, while crucial in the Zags' easy win, were not her only contributions. Even more impressive was her defense, as she not only disrupted the Vandal offense out front by dominating UI's guards, she also was active in her weak-side rotations, allowing the GU traps to be effective when Idaho changed how it attacked. All in all, it was one of Redmon's better games. And probably one of the better days for the sisters.
• Washington State: The Cougars are in Seattle for their annual game (a game usually accompanied by snow in the Puget Sound area) and Christian Caple is there. He spoke with Ken Bone yesterday, which led to this blog post. Christian also has a morning blog post as usual. ... Christian also has a feature in today's paper on Mike Ladd and how he's been dealing with fatherhood. ... One game Christian gave way-too-short shrift to in his morning post was UC Irvine's dominate win at USC last night. The Anteaters came within a point of proving they are the best Pac-12 team in Southern California this season, after losing to UCLA earlier this season in overtime. ... Steve Kelley notes it's going to be a great sports weekend in Seattle, though he forgets tonight's Cougar basketball game.
• Gonzaga: Chris Derrick was in McCarthey last night as well and he filed this story on GU's dominant win over the Vandals. He also put up this blog post last night. ... Jim Meehan looked back at the easy win over Campbell yesterday. ... The Zag men return to the court late this month to entertain Baylor. BYU is headed to Waco where it will play the Bears tonight.
• EWU: It hasn't been a good start to the basketball season for Eastern Washington. And the beginning of Big Sky Conference play couldn't have been much worse. The Eagles fell behind early and never made a serious run, losing at home to Weber State 74-53. Jim Allen has the story. Jesse Tinsley has these photos. ... We also found a couple stories from Utah. ... Portland State began conference play with an easy win over visiting Idaho State.
• Idaho: No matter what conference the vagabond Boise State basketball team plays in, the Broncos know they have a rivalry game in Idaho. The two met last night in Boise, with BSU coming out on top. Josh Wright has a blog post, we have this story in the S-R and we found another piece in the Statesman. ... Utah State struggled but held on last night.
• Preps: As we said, Greg was at Mead's road win over Ferris, part of the GSL girls' roundup. The Ferris boys earned a tight win over the Panthers and that game leads the GSL boys roundup. We also have a roundup of both girls and boys play from around the area.
• Seahawks: Earlier in the week, it was assumed the 49ers were going to take the biggest injury hit this week, losing defensive tackle Justin Smith. But the Hawks found out yesterday they are taking a hit up front on defense as well, with tackle Jason Jones placed on the injured list. Not good for either team. ... The 49ers have struggled to contain Marshawn Lynch, while the two teams' young quarterbacks also cause defenses trouble. ... There are a lot of similarities between the teams and their coaching philosophies.
• Mariners: The trade for Kendrys Morales intertwines a player with an organization he already had some history with. It was also a long time in the making. ... After the changes at the end of last season and through the winter, look for Michael Saunders to see more time in right field. ... And, as we said at the top of this post, there are rankings and numbers for everything (pictured). Even things that shouldn't ever be ranked.
• The final Friday before Christmas. I bet the stores will be crowded. Not sure if I'm going to venture out into the mob, but I presume I'll remember something I need today and make a trek. Until later ...