BACK AT THE KEY: Seattle University returns to KeyArena still looking for its first Western Athletic Conference victory of the season. The Redhawks welcome defending WAC Tournament champion New Mexico State Thursday night, Jan. 10, followed by a Saturday afternoon game against Denver. This begins a stretch in which six of Seattle U's next eight games will be at home, an important stretch for the Redhawks to get back into contention in the league.
WHERE TO FIND THE GAME: 770 AM KTTH The Truth will broadcast both games live, with Dave Grosby and Gary Hill Jr. courtside starting with the pregame show at 6:45 p.m. Thursday and 3:15 p.m. Saturday. ROOT SPORTS will televise both games live, with Tom Glasgow, Lenny Wilkens, and Jen Mueller on the call Saturday and Bill Krueger joining Glasgow for Saturday's contest. Live stats will also be available at GoSeattleU.com.
LAST WEEKEND: Seattle University embarked on its first Western Athletic Conference road trip of the 2012-13 season. Although the climates were very different, the two games played out similarly, with Seattle U holding a lead late in the second half both nights before losing to the home teams. Thursday night in frigid Logan, Utah, there were eight lead changes in the second half, as six unanswered points from Deshaun Sunderhaus gave the Redhawks a 53-50 lead with six minutes remaining in regulation. Utah State outscored Seattle U, 20-5, over the next five minutes and went 7-of-8 from the free throw line in the final minute to hold on for a 75-66 victory. Sunderhaus notched his third double-double of the season with 23 points and 10 rebounds, shooting 10-of-13 from the field in the game. Saturday night at San Jose State, a 15-5 Seattle U scoring run put the Redhawks ahead, 55-54, with 5:51 left in the second half. The Spartans responded with a 9-1 run of their own, and San Jose State went 15-of-18 from the free throw line in the final four minutes of the game. Chad Rasmussen led Seattle U with 15 points, while Louis Green shot 6-of-7 from the field in collecting 14 points and nine rebounds, career highs in both categories for the senior.
SCOUTING NEW MEXICO STATE: The Aggies come into Thursday's game with an 8-8 overall record, including a 2-2 record within the Western Athletic Conference after defeating UTSA (82-62) and Texas State (78-67) at home last weekend. New Mexico State is 1-6 on the road so far this year. The Aggies are scoring 67.0 points per game and giving up 62.9 points per contest. As a team, New Mexico State is shooting 45.8 percent from the field, including 28.4 percent from behind the three-point line, and 65.7 percent from the free throw line. Daniel Mullings leads the team in scoring with 15.1 points per game, as he is shooting 55.1 percent from the field and 74.4 percent from the free throw line. Tyrone Watson and Sim Bhullar are each averaging 9.8 points per game, with Bhullar shooting 67.4 percent from the field. Bandja Sy leads the Aggies in rebounding with 6.8 rebounds per game, while K.C. Ross-Miller leads in assists with 3.1 assists per contest.
SEATTLE U VS. NEW MEXICO STATE: This will be the third meeting all-time between Seattle U and New Mexico State, with both previous contests taking place during the 1970-71 season. On Dec. 28, 1970, in the first round of the Road Runner Classic in Las Cruces, N.M., New Mexico State defeated Seattle U, 91-78. In the rematch Feb. 20, 1971, at the old Seattle Coliseum, Seattle U was victorious over New Mexico State, 77-71.
SCOUTING DENVER: The Pioneers enter Thursday's game against Idaho with a 7-7 overall record, including a 3-1 record within the WAC. After losing five of its first six games, Denver has gone 6-2 over the last eight games, including a three-game winning streak heading into the weekend. The Pioneers are scoring 62.9 points per game and giving up 56.5 points per contest. As a team, Denver is shooting 46.0 percent from the field, including 35.9 percent from behind the three-point line, and 71.9 percent from the free throw line. Royce O'Neale is averaging 13.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game, followed by Chris Udofia with 11.9 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 2.2 blocked shots per game.
SEATTLE U VS. DENVER: This will be the seventh meeting all-time between Denver and Seattle U, with Seattle U holding a 4-2 series edge. The first meeting took place on Nov. 30, 1956, Elgin Baylor's first game with Seattle U, a 67-60 victory for Seattle U in Pocatello, Idaho. Denver's first win of the series came on Jan. 20, 1968, a 91-87 victory in Denver. Seattle U responded the next season with an 84-64 win on Dec. 19, 1968, at the Seattle Center Coliseum. The teams met twice during the 1969-70 campaign, with Seattle U picking up victories on Jan. 12, 1970, in Denver (70-57) and on Feb. 27, 1970, in Seattle (79-61). After almost 40 years, Seattle U and Denver met again Dec. 22, 2009, at Magness Arena, with the Pioneers coming back from a 16-point second half deficit to defeat the Redhawks, 84-83, on a last-second three-pointer from Andrew Hooper.
BLACKOUT: Saturday, Jan. 12, has been designated as the Blackout Game at KeyArena. The Blackout is a unifying game day experience for both fans and the team. This event directly features one of the primary Seattle University Athletics brand colors, black. Black is part of Rudy's coloring and has long been integral to the interlocking "SU" logo. To support the Blackout, Athletics is requesting that all fans simply wear a black shirt, sweatshirt or jacket. On this Saturday, Jan. 12, the goal will be to "wear black," and, as always, to be loud!