No one should have to learn it like this, but Collin Sather, who said in high school “the most important thing to me is to be a coachable player,” is finding being a team member works both ways. The University of Idaho redshirt freshman wide receiver began experiencing stomach pains Jan. 17 and has been diagnosed with advanced kidney cancer. The UI football program and university administrators have rallied to support him.
Montana State had its all-time scoring leader on the floor, and a young Idaho didn’t. It made all the difference in a crucial two minutes in the second half of a game the Bobcats pulled away to win, 77-67.
The Vandals could also get immediate help from Satchel Escalante, a 6-0, 182-pound safety from Scottsdale Community College in Casa Grande. Arizona, and Siliweinusi “Vei” Tomasi, 6-1, 310, and a defensive lineman from Laney College in Oakland, California.
Washington State advanced to the second round of the NCAA volleyball tournament against Tennessee with a four-game win against a smaller but defensively tough Northern Arizona Friday in Bohler Gym in the opening round.
After Walla Walla University canceled its season and dropped out of a date with Idaho, the Vandals were able to fill the schedule vacancy on short notice with West Coast Baptist College, from Lancaster, California.
In the second half, however, the Cougars rediscovered the flow and rhythm that has characterized their wins so far this year. They pushed a five-point halftime edge to as much as 32 points, and they finished shooting a respectable 45 percent for the game, 27 of 60.
As a lead that had reached 31 points melted to 12 late in the second half, it highlighted what a different team Washington State is without Robert Franks on the floor. But the Cougars drew the line there and held off Cal Poly for an 84-70 win Monday, which put a spotlight, as well, on what coach Ernie Kent believes is a special defensive unit.
If Idaho did not exactly play down to Bethesda, it was certainly not pushed to lofty heights by the 0-5 Flames from the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference of the National Christian College Athletic Association. Nonetheless, the Vandals pretty much did what they were supposed to do against an overmatched opponent in picking up the season’s first win, 87-59, Sunday in Memorial Gym.
The Idaho Vandals are playing out the final game in a 4-6 season. But instead of finding themselves in a Big Sky Conference outpost in early winter, the Vandals on Saturday are in the sun, at a storied stadium and facing a nationally ranked SEC opponent.
In his senior year at the University of Idaho, where four years of a disciplined approach to the classroom and the football field should have paid off in a sunset cruise to graduation, Ed Hall could still benefit from the 30-hour day.