Tag Archives: basketball

WAC preseason polls announced, Idaho too low

24 Oct

Madison McCord | Vandal Nation
Junior forward Stephen Madison throws down a dunk before the Black and Gold Scrimmage Friday.

The preseason suspension of Idaho center Kyle Barone must have really hurt the Vandal men’s basketball team who have been picked to finish sixth and fifth in the coaches and media polls respectively.

The Vandal women’s team also slipped lower than we projected finishing fifth and sixth in the coaches and media polls respectively.

Three bright spots did arise from the polls though for the Vandals, with three players receiving all-WAC honors. For the men, Barone was picked as a first-team member in both polls after finishing last season as a second-team all-WAC selection. On the women’s team, junior forward Alyssa Charlston was a first-team selection in both polls, while sophomore guard Krissy Karr received second-team placement in both. Continue reading

Men prevail in OT

12 Jan

Theo Lawson



Trailing by as many as 13 points in the first half, the Vandal men’s basketball team found a will and a way to come out on top
of Thursday night’s overtime stunner against hosts La. Tech.

The 90-88 victory marked the first time Idaho (9-8, 2-1) has been victorious at the Thomas Assembly Center in six years.

After allowing their opponents to put up 43 points in the first half, the Vandals turned things around and found themselves with a chance to close out the game with 30 seconds remaining. Three offensive rebounds gave Idaho three separate chances to win it, but neither Kyle Barone nor Stephen Madison were able to convert from inside the key, thus forcing an overtime period.

With 4:11 remaining in OT, Deremy Geiger knocked down a shot from beyond the arc which gave his squad a 79-76 advantage. Despite a few missed opportunities the Vandals played a fundamentally sound overtime period, in which they never trailed. After a questionable inbounds call went the Bulldogs’ way, La. Tech had a chance to tie it up at 90-90 with 13 seconds left. Raheem Appleby had an opportunity to be the Bulldogs’ savior, but after Matt Borton was called for a foul on Appleby’s 3-point attempt the freshman missed his second free throw and Landon Tatum grabbed a defensive rebound on the third to seal the deal.

Idaho had no answer for the Bulldogs’ perimeter shooting, but were able to survive the clutch hot hand of Ole Miss transfer Trevor Gaskins. The senior was 5-6 from 3-point range, four of those coming in the second half and overtime.

The Bulldogs led for almost 30 consecutive minutes, but a 3-point jumper from Deremy Geiger set the teams even at 56-56 with 12 minutes remaining. Stephen Madison executed a layup turned 3-point play shortly after to give Idaho the slight lead. Although the lead itself didn’t last longer than one La. Tech possession, Idaho battled and a Madison three at the 5:46 mark would spark a run that helped the visitors gain a four-point lead in the second half’s final minutes.

Geiger, whose 3-point shooting and rebounding efforts proved essential down the stretch, finished as the game’s leading scorer with 23 points, while tacking on four assists and four rebounds. Senior Landon Tatum was 13-15 from the charity stripe and added 20 points and six assists. Kyle Barone and Madison both finished in double digits and Barone led both teams with 15 rebounds.

La. Tech’s Brandon Gibson troubled the Vandals as much as anyone as the junior guard notched 22 points and 13 rebounds.

Idaho now faces a daunting task in Las Cruces, N.M. on Saturday, when they take on New Mexico State at 6:00 p.m. The Aggies currently sit second in the WAC with 11 wins on the season and are led by senior forward Wendell McKines. The Oakland, CA., native ranks 40th in the NCAA with 18.4 points per game and 13th with 10.7 rebounds per game.

VIDEO – Post Game News Conference – Idaho v Fresno State

11 Jan

VIDEO – Post Game News Conference – Idaho v Nevada

11 Jan

Weak Vandal offense helpless against hungry Wolf Pack

6 Jan

Madison McCord
Vandal Nation

With many students still on winter break, only 1,081 seats in the Cowan Spectrum were occupied for Thursday night’s Idaho men’s basketball WAC season opener.

Little did those fans know though that they were paying for front row seats to the Deonte Burton show.

The sophomore guard almost single-handedly guided the Nevada Wolfpack to a 73-55 trouncing of the Vandals, who fall to 7-8 (0-1) with the loss. Burton, the WAC Preseason Player of the Year torched the Idaho defense for 26 points and six assists for the conference leading Wolfpack, who extended their winning streak to eight and now stand at 11-3 (1-0) on the year.

Idaho coach Don Verlin said that Burton was the difference maker in the game, and as only a sophomore, he still has time to get better.

“Burton can really get it going, he’s certainly got it going against us every time we’ve played him.” Verlin said. “You have to do a good job on him. You can’t allow him to go to his right or step into his jumper, you’ve gotta slow him down and we didn’t. He’s a good player and probably the best candidate in our league to play at the next level.”

Nevada started hot out of the gate taking a six-point lead over Idaho in just over three minutes after two Burton three-point shots were hit and senior forward Dario Hunt snatched an offensive board and converted the easy lay-up.

Idaho kept the game close for the next eight minutes until another three from Malik Story gave Nevada a double-digit advantage. Story finished the game as the team’s second leading scorer with 17.

Idaho’s third leading scorer on the year, Stephen Madison, who led the Vandals in points with 13, hit a three with just over eight minutes to go to cut the deficit to seven, but the Vandals were unable to score for the next four minutes. In that time Nevada was able to push their lead to 13. Idaho guard Deremy Geiger and center Kyle Barone, the teams’ two leading scorers on the year each finished with eight points on the evening.

Part of the reason for the offensive struggles in the first half according to Verlin was the changing of defensive pressure and style from Nevada, which he puts on his shoulders for not properly preparing his players.

“It was exactly what we expected, but for some reason we were confused on a lot of plays,” Verlin said. “We put that press breaker in a few games ago, and for whatever reason we really struggled with the execution of that tonight. Give the credit to Nevada, they did a good job of changing their defenses in the first half and the Vandals didn’t do a good job of attacking.”

The half ended in dramatic fashion for Nevada as Geiger missed two free throws with only four seconds left, Olek Czyz grabbed the board for the Wolfpack and as the buzzer sounded Burton connected with his third make from beyond the arc. Going into halftime Nevada led 42-25. Turnovers were also key in the first half for Idaho, as the Vandals committed 13 compared to only seven for Nevada.

Burton ended the half with 15 points and the entire Nevada team shot 57 percent from the floor.

The second half was much of the same for Idaho, as the Wolfpack extended their lead at one point to 22 with just more than 15 minutes left to play in the game.

Both teams settled down more in the second half, as Idaho only committed two turnovers in the final 20 minutes. Nevada’s shooting hand also cooled down at the end, shooting 50 percent from the field.

Both teams played back and forth basketball for the final 15 minutes, but with 6;12 left in the game, Nevada lost their backup to Hunt as Devonte Elliott threw an elbow to the forehead of Idaho guard Matt Borton while the two were on the ground. Initially ruled as a loose ball foul, the referees reviewed the play and called a flagrant two foul against Elliott who was then ejected. The WAC reviews all in-game ejections so Elliott’s status for their game against Utah State on Saturday is unsure. Borton stayed in the game after the foul but looked to be in pain and was subbed out with  four minutes left.

“I haven’t talked to (Borton) yet, but I know the trainers are looking at him,” Verlin said.

In the end, the Vandals just couldn’t match up with the smaller, but more athletic Wolfpack squad who had more steals, blocks and made three pointers. Idaho though did win the battle on the boards and in the assists column.

Coach Verlin said that the quick start from Burton and lack of offense in the first half was the eventual downfall for Idaho, who have to develop a short memory as they host the Fresno State Bulldogs in the Cowan Spectrum Saturday at 3:05 p.m.

“If we expect to play at the top of this league, and we do, we have to play better with more energy, more intensity and we have to execute a lot better.”

Idaho vs. Washington State- Postgame press conference

7 Dec

Idaho vs. Eastern Washington postgame interview

30 Nov

LIVE BLOG: Idaho men’s basketball vs. Eastern Washington

30 Nov

Idaho vs. Eastern Washington

LIVE BLOG: Idaho women’s basketball versus Washington

30 Nov

Idaho women’s basketball versus Washington

Idaho vs Gonzaga postgame

17 Nov

Zags beat up on Idaho

17 Nov


Photo courtesy of Zach Edwards/Argonaut

Story by Kevin Bingaman/Argonaut


Victory was never in question for Gonzaga as the Bulldogs rolled the Vandal women’s basketball team 91-42 Thursday night in Memorial Gym.

The Vandals came into the game fresh off of a 30-point loss to North Dakota on Monday and things didn’t improve as it was another blowout. Idaho coach Jon Newlee said he hopes playing a tough team like Gonzaga was a learning experience for his players.

“Our players can take away seeing what a top-20 team is like,” Newlee said. “Physically they really took us out of what we wanted to do. They did a great job defensively just taking us out of our spots.”

Even before the game started things were not going Idaho’s way. Starters Krissy Karr and Ganeaya Rogers were both injured at North Dakota on Monday and were unable to play against the Zags. Newlee said their absence was a “killer” as his Vandals had to quickly adjust their roster, putting players in positions they don’t usually play. Senior Adrie Shields said it was a difficult transition.

“I went from a forward to a guard in the space of a week. It was a lot different than I thought it would be,” Shields said. “…I forgot how hard it was to play that many minutes.”

The Gonzaga defense was in Idaho’s face all night and the Vandals struggled to get any sort of offence going. The Zags started the game on a 13-4 run and took a commanding 48-22 lead into halftime. The Vandals did everything they could to hang with Gonzaga in the second half, but the Bulldogs proved to be too powerful and soared to the blowout victory.

Freshman Stacey Barr was the lone offensive bright spot for Idaho as she led the team with 18 points and continues to be impressive. The Vandals shot only 28.6 percent for the game and turned the ball over a dismal 26 times. Shiels said it’s been a rough couple games but said the team’s learned some valuable lessons.

“We’ve learned a lot in those two games and we’ve had a lot of leaps to take,” Shiels said. “…We’ll get there.”

On the Gonzaga side, it was a special night for coach Kelly Graves as he notched his 300th career victory. Graves said it was a special moment, but he gave all the credit to the talented players he’s coached over the years. While it was a one-sided win, Graves said he was impressed with what the Vandal players showed on the court.

“I want to give coach Newlee’s team a lot of credit, “Graves said. “They were obviously shorthanded. He’s one of my favorite coaches and he gets more out of his players than anybody.”

The Vandals will look to snap their current two game losing streak when they travel to the University of Montana to take on the Grizzlies on Sunday. The Griz own a 35-7 overall series record on Idaho, but the Vandals won their lone meeting last season.


Idaho vs. Gonazaga- LIVEBLOG

17 Nov

Click on this link to follow our live blog of tonight’s action between Gonzaga and Idaho. 

Idaho vs. Gonzaga

Idaho vs. Concordia- Postgame interviews

14 Nov

Early trouble

14 Nov

Kevin Bingaman/Argonaut

Three points was all that separated Idaho and Corban University in Saturday’s home opener as the Vandals took a hard fought 77-74 victory that raises some concerns about the rest of the season.

The Vandals could never build a lead as the Warriors came back time and time again. Idaho turned the ball over 17 times against the NAIA foe. Idaho coach Jon Newlee said he was not happy with the team’s performance.

“Pretty ugly game from our standpoint, but I’ve got to give Corban a lot of credit,” Newlee said. “They came in tonight and wanted to win. We didn’t come in focused and ready to play tonight.”

Idaho hit only 36 percent of their shots in the game and only 27.5 percent in the first half. Free-throw shooting was also mediocre for the Vandals. They hit just 15 of 23 from the line. Newlee said he didn’t see the focus in his team.

“That’s something we work on every day,” Newlee said. “Free-throw shooting takes focus and we didn’t have it tonight.”

On the bright side of things for Idaho, freshman Krissy Karr and Stacey Barr continued to impress. Barr lead the team with 20 points while Karr had 23. Karr made one of the key plays in the game late in the fourth quarter. Idaho was up by only one with 39 seconds to go. She intercepted a Corban inbound pass that resulted in a Jessica Graham layup to put Idaho up by three late, which held up in the end. Karr said she feels she needs to be aggressive to prove she belongs as a starter.

“I feel, honestly, that I need to prove myself to a lot of people right now,” Karr said. “Coach has definitely given me the confidence to know that I just need to play my game. It definitely helps knowing that he’s got my back.”

The Vandals will have to catch their focus real quick as they have powerhouse Gonzaga coming to Memorial Gym next Thursday.

Newlee said he wasn’t happy with his team’s performance, but hopes his players learn a lesson about focus.

“You’ve got to play everybody that comes in to the gym and you’ve got to respect your opponent,” Newlee said. “I don’t feel like my team respected those guys tonight and we almost got it handed to us and it was almost a very harsh lesson to learn.  As it is, I think we can learn from it in a positive way and figure out what we need to do every night and play hard and play more focused.”


Vandals come up short in Long Beach

14 Nov

Theo Lawson/Argonaut

The Vandal men’s basketball team held on for 36 minutes but the preseason Big West favorites Long Beach State had too much horsepower, slipping away late with a 69-61 win Saturday in the Walter Pyramid.

Consecutive 49er turnovers immediately before halftime allowed the Vandals a 29-27 lead after but a second half that saw the lead change five times ended up in favor of the hosts — who pleased 4,348 fans on Homecoming.

Down by seven points late in the first half, Idaho went on a 10-1 run to end the half. During the run, Long Beach State was 0-5 from the field but Idaho’s persistency ran out in the second half.

“We played hard enough to win tonight,” Idaho head coach Don Verlin said. “I was very disappointed in our execution down the stretch. We just didn’t make the plays that we needed to down the stretch.”

Idaho’s final lead came with 8:15 remaining in the second half, following a Stephen Madison three-pointer. The 49ers’ Eugene Phelps responded with a dunk and though the Vandals would tie it up once more, regaining the lead wasn’t in the forecast for Idaho.

Junior center Kyle Barone tied it up at 53 a piece at the 7:34 mark but reigning Big West Player of the Year Casper Ware gave the 49ers a three-point lead and Mansa Habeeb’s jumper was blocked at the other end, which would lead to a breakaway and James Ennis dunk.

“We’ve got to play that hard every night, but we’ve got to clear up some of those executional things, or it’s going to be a long year,” Verlin said.

The Vandals were victim to 16 turnovers, 10 of those coming in the second half. Long Beach turned the ball over 10 times.

Madison helped the Vandals to a 6-1 run, which closed the gap to two points, but Phelps turned in a jumper and Ware knocked down another from beyond the arc, giving Long Beach a decisive 66-59 lead.

“We did a lot of good things, but our concentration on a few key items has to get better,” Verlin said. “I thought we did a lot of really good things, but I was disappointed that we didn’t execute with the game on the line.”

Djim Bandoumel came off the bench to contribute 13 points and four rebounds while point guard Deremy Geiger added 13 points, four rebounds and three assists. Barone led the Vandals in rebounds with nine, but finished with just 11 points and turned the ball over twice.

Idaho had no answer for Ware, who went off for 20 points, four assists and three rebounds. 49er guard Larry Anderson followed with 16 points and seven assists, while forward T.J. Robinson was the game’s leading rebounder with 11.

The Vandal bench, led by Bandoumel, contributed 22 points.

“I thought they did a great job,” Verlin said. “Djim Bandoumel gave us a great lift – I thought he made a lot of big plays. Matt Borton came in in the second half and gave us a huge lift. He made a couple baskets and had a couple assists, and I thought he played very well.”




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