As the UAA men’s basketball team headed into the 40th and final GCI Great Alaska Shootout on Wednesday, Nov. 23, the Seawolves did not deliver the tournament debut that they and head coach Rusty Osborne may have initially wished for.
“We played against the very good team of CSU Bakersfield and we played really bad, and you know, that [sometimes] happens with new players [because] they’re not only learning to trust each other, they’re learning to trust the coach and the system,” Osborne said.
Although almost equivalent when coming into the game, CSU with a 3-2 overall record and UAA with a 3-3 record, the Roadrunners were able to overcome to the season records to prevail over the Seawolves.
Although the Seawolves started out slow, the second half of their game proved to me more successful, unless compared to CSU Bakersfield. While UAA finished with a 25 percent and 32 percent shot rate in the first and second half, respectively, the Roadrunners outshot and outscored them significantly, with 41 percent and 44 percent, respectively.
While CSU came in averaging 11.5 points in field goals and 1.5 in 3-pointers, the Seawolves managed a meager 7.5 and 1, respectively. However, the one thing UAA reined over CSU in was free throws.
During the first half, CSU had 0 free throws while UAA had 2, managing a 50 percent average. During the second half, the Roadrunners made more free throws than the Seawolves, with 10 and 7, respectively, but UAA managed a 87.5 percent average.
With thirteen new members of the team, it was expected that it might take a bit of time for the Seawolves to get back on their feet, but of those newcomers, transfers Josiah Wood, D.J. Ursery and Jacob Lampkin made the biggest contributions on Tuesday evening.
Although accumulating the second lowest overall point average, at 30 percent, point guard Wood was able to make four field goals, one 3-pointer and one rebound with eleven, five and four attempts respectively.
Senior guard, 6’4″ Ursery, takes the title for the lowest overall average, however, managing to score the second most points on the team. With 35 total shot attempts, including 10 field goals, three 3-points, 4 free throws and 8 rebounds.
As for the third of the three top-scorers for the night, 6’9″ forward Lampkin managed a 50 percent field goal average and accumulated 6 points for the Seawolves. In addition, Lampkin attempted two rebounds, but made neither of them.
However, these accomplishments were only masked by the totals that several CSU Bakersfield players made.
The successful offense seen on the Roadrunner’s side was apparent from the very beginning. Only five minutes into the game, CSU was already up by 6 points, at 8-2.
That lead continued for about ten minutes until the Seawolves got a slight glimpse of a potential tie with 5 minutes left in the half, where they were just a point behind at 13-14. However, that did not last and the Roadrunners shot up to 25 by the end of the first half.
CSU offensively took off once entering the second half. In the time it took the Seawolves to accumulate four points, the Roadrunners managed to get 10 points.
The Roadrunners managed to make several more significant rallies, including a 6-point and 5-point rally, all while keeping up their defensive and avoiding letting the Seawolves score.
“We were not trusting our offensive system and we were disjointed and struggling,” Osborne said.
By the end of the second half, CSU increased their 9 point lead from halftime, to an official 20-point lead at the end of the game. The final score was 59-39.