Redhawks Roundball Roundup: Seattle U hovers at .500 but get 1st conference win

#0 Brendan Westendorf gets into position. Photo Credit: Abraham DeWeese

Redhawks Roundball Roundup: Seattle U hovers at .500 but get 1st conference win

The Seattle University (9-9, 1-2) Redhawks got their 1st Western Athletic Conference win of the season on Saturday and continued their habit in January of streaky shooting.  The struggling shots saw the Redhawks struggle to get a solid inside presence due to the injury of their center Aaron Menzies. Coach Cameron Dollar had a difficult time getting anything going against Cal St Bakersfield and UMKC in recent weeks and struggling to find breakout star. The good news is that Saturday, the Redhawks may have found a weapon in Matej Kavas.

University of Missouri, Kansas City Kangaroos, L 68-84

#1 Morgan Means posts up on Chicago St while #0 Brendan Westendorf rotates into shooting position. Photo Credit: Abraham DeWeese

Struggles abound as the Redhawks went down early and could never recover.  Without 7’3 center Aaron Menzies available, UMKC owned a 40-32 edge in rebounds including 9 from senior Kyle Steward. The 6’7 Roos forward would have his best game of the season going 5-10 from the field and scoring a season best 21 points.

Senior Redhawk guard Brandan Westendorf would find himself with another good game, scoring 20 points, but it was a lack of inside presence that would doom Seattle U as all the Redhawk guards combined would only pull down 8 total rebounds.

In the loss, there may be some good news as the Slovenian freshman Matej Kavas went 5-6 in limited opportunities to collect 16 points. While not enough to stave off a loss, his efforts would show coach Cameron Dollar that there maybe a weapon left unutilized—and we would see more of Kavas the next game.

Final 1 2 T
UMKC 36 48 84
SEA 29 39 68

Chicago State Cougars, W 65-50

Freshman guard Matej Kavas would be a dominant force as he scored 24 points and pulled in 8 rebounds to guide the Redhawks to an victory against the visiting Cougars. While the 1st half was close, the Redhawks would kick in the afterburners to breeze past Chicago St.

Brendan Westedorf was his usual productive self with 18 points and 2 steals; we saw quite a bit of emotion from the senior in efforts to rally the team and it worked as the Redhawks would take a double-digit lead in the 2nd half (9:53) and never relinquish it for the rest of the game.

Final 1 2 T
CHS 26 24 50
SEA 28 37 65

Just the stats

Team leaders

  • Points per game: 15.4 Brandan Westendorf
  • Assists per game: 3.4 Brandan Westendorf
  • Rebounds per game: 6.1 Aaron Menzies

Team stats

  • Points per game: 72.4
  • Rebounds per game: 35.6
  • Assists per game 16.4
  • Points allowed per game: 72.6

SSU Player of the Week

#5 Kavas gets 1 of 8 rebounds. Photo credit: Abraham DeWeese

Where exactly did Matej Kavas come from? Well I guess Ljubljana, Slovenia is the answer, but this season the freshman had people scrambling for their programs whenever he came into the game. The 6’7 guard would find himself inserted with the injury to Aaron Menzies.

Previously having only been used during garbage time, Kavas had not produced much in the way of minutes or shots. These last 3 weeks he has averaged 17.6 points per game. Against Chcago St., he sparked the team and led them to victory behind a 24 point effort.

With 8 rebounds on Saturday, he proved himself a scrappy player and Seattle U fans can come to expect that he gets more looks in games to come.

DATE OPP RESULT MIN REB AST PTS
Sat 1/7 @CSU BAKERSFIELD L 78-71 28 1 1 13
Thu 1/12 UMKC L 84-68 26 4 0 16
Sat 1/14 CHICAGO STATE W 65-50 34 8 0 24

Next Side Up

@ Grand Canyon Antelopes (12-7, 2-1) Saturday, 1/21

Up next for the Redhawks are the Antelopes of Grand Canyon in Phoenix. Winners of 7 of their last 9 games, the Antelopes have settled into a groove and look to make some waves in the WAC. Senior guard DeWayne Russell has been  on fire averaging 23.3 points per game.

While diminutive in size (5’11 155lb), Russell has been unstoppable including a 42 point effort in a close loss to #14 Louisville. Expect the long bombs to fly as Russell is shooting 42 percent from 3 point range in what promises to be a track meet between these 2 teams.

Standings

WAC CONF OVERALL
New Mexico State 4-0 17-2
Grand Canyon 2-1 12-7
CSU Bakersfield 2-1 11-7
UMKC 2-2 9-11
Seattle 1-2 9-9
Utah Valley 1-2 9-9
UT Rio Grande Valley 1-3 9-12
Chicago State 1-3 5-15

 

Abraham DeWeese is an avid local sports fan and a “Man-About-Town” in the Seattle sports scene. He’s a lifelong resident of the Seattle area, living in the beautiful Greenlake neighborhood.

 

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