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13th-ranked Seattle Pacific stops UAA men

Jeremy Peters

Seattle Pacific’s men’s basketball team hasn’t made a habit of beating UAA in Anchorage, but the 13th-ranked Falcons pulled away in convincing fashion down the stretch Saturday to knock off the 25th-ranked Seawolves 85-79.

The Great Northwest Athletic Conference foes were tied at 49-49 with less than 10 minutes remaining, but a hush came over a crowded Wells Fargo Sports Complex when Seattle Pacific’s Patrick Simon nailed a 3-pointer to put the Falcons up 71-60 with 3:08 to go.

“For us this game has been big on our schedule every year,” Seattle Pacific coach Ryan Looney said. “We feel like coming to Anchorage and playing at UAA is as tough a game as we have on our schedule.”

Saturday’s win was the first in Anchorage for Looney, who is in his fourth year coaching the Falcons (7-1, 2-0 GNAC). 

Including Saturday’s loss, UAA (7-2, 1-1) owns a 27-7 record at home against Seattle Pacific.

“We missed a lot defensive assignments and we also missed a lot free throws in that last 10 minutes, which could have kept us close,” UAA coach Rusty Osborne said. “It’s a little disappointing, ’cause we’re a good free-throw shooting team.”

Fans groaned over and over as the Seawolves missed free throws in the closing minutes, a couple times at the front end of one-and-one’s. Fans came back to life when Kyle Fossman (15 points) drilled a 3-pointer to pull UAA within six with 52 seconds remaining, but Seattle Pacific calmly closed the win. 

Simon, who was vomiting in a trash can at the end of the Seattle Pacific bench early in the second half, scored his team’s final points on a reverse layup with 21 seconds to go. The 6-foot-8 junior is Seattle Pacific’s leading scorer this season. 

“He’s been battling the flu all weekend,” Looney said. “He had 30 at Fairbanks (on Thursday), but anytime he was on the bench he had his head in the trash can throwing up and he was battling it again tonight.” 

Simon (15 points) was one of five players to score in double figures for the Falcons, who got a game-high 20 from Jobi Wall and a double-double from David Downs (13 points, 12 assists). 

Teancum Stafford led UAA in scoring for the second straight game, pumping in 19 points. Stafford also drew the unenviable task of guarding Simon most of the night and said he let him escape for a few too many open shots. 

“His length is really advantageous for him, playing from the four spot and being longer than just about everybody on the court,” Stafford said. “He can really shoot and I think he proved that tonight.”

Simon wasn’t the only Falcon using size to his advantage. On numerous occasions, UAA players were easily bumped away from loose balls and rebounds by the bigger Seattle Pacific players. Andy Poling, a 6-foot-11, 255-pounder, hauled in eight rebounds to help give the Falcons a 31-26 edge on the boards. 

The size disadvantage was nothing UAA hadn’t prepared for, however, and Osborne thought there were stretches in which the Seawolves handled it well. 

“They have great size and they’re very disciplined,” Osborne said. “When we did what we practiced, we took advantage of their size and they had trouble with our quickness.” 

The Seawolves have two weeks off before their next game against Northwest Indian College. They won’t face the Falcons again until the last day of February and Stafford said the game will make a nice target to work toward. 

“It’s good to have maybe a chip on your shoulder to just remind you, ‘Hey, you didn’t get what you wanted,’ ” he said. 

 

SEATTLE PACIFIC (85)

Wall 5-10 8-8 20; Simon 5-13 2-2 15; Downs 2-6 7-8 13; Hutsen 6-7 0-0 12; Poling 4-8 3-7 11; Stockton 2-3 2-2 8; Morse 1-2 1-2 4; Carroll 1-2 0-2 2; Todd 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-51 23-31 85.

UAA (79) — Stafford 8-14 2-4 19; Fossman 3-7 7-7 15; MacKelvie 3-3 5-5 11; Leckband 3-5 0-3 7; Lauwers 2-7 1-2 7; Little 2-3 3-3 7; Demissie 1-5 3-7 6; Gibcus 1-5 3-4 5; Spickerman  1-1 0-0 2; Erickson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 24-50 24-35 79.

Seattle Pacific 34   51  —   85

UAA 30   49  —   79

3-point goals — Seattle Pacific 10-24 (Simon 3-8; Stockton 2-3; Downs 2-5; Wall 2-5; Morse 1-2; Carroll 0-1), UAA 7-21 (Lauwers 2-6; Fossman 2-4; Stafford 1-5; Leckband 1-2; Demissie, 1-4). Total fouls — SPU 27, UAA 22. Fouled out — Simon. Rebounds — SPU 31 (Poling 8), UAA 26 (Demissie 7). Assists — SPU 24 (Downs 12), UAA 17 (Lauwers 4). Turnovers — SPU 9 (Stockton 2), UAA 9 (Gibcus 3, MacKelvie 3). Steals — SPU 3 (Downs 2), UAA 3. Blocked shots — SPU 2. Technical fouls — UAA team. A — 814.

Reach Jeremy Peters at jpeters@adn.com or 257-4335.

 

 


By JEREMY PETERS
jpeters@adn.com