East Washington men’s basketball heads to the East Coast for Thanksgiving weekend to compete in the Florida International Tournament in Miami, Florida. Eastern Basketball will begin its tournament against Stony Brook on Friday, November 25 at 2:30 pm PT. The Eagles will then take on host school Florida International on Sunday, November 27 at 3:00 pm.
The game against FIU will be streamed live on ConferenceUSA.com, with live stats from both games available on FIUSports.com. Listen to both games live at 7:00 AM ESPN/105.3 FM with Larry Weir connected.
Eastern Washington hosted Washington State at the Spokane Arena on Monday (November 21). The Cougars led 36–21 after the first half and won the game 82–56. Eastern had a 31.1 percent shooting percentage in the game, while WSU had almost half of them at 48.4 percent. The Cougars also hit 15 of 30 (50%) three-pointers.
Steel Venters led the Eagles with 20 points on 7-of-15 shooting (71.4%) and returned to his former self with 5-of-7 (71.4%) shooting from 3-point. Ethan Price scored 11 points and five rebounds in the game.
Even though Eastern only made nine passes, WSU scored 15 of them. The Eagles scored four points from the Cougar’s six assists.
Eyes on the eagles
Eastern Washington started the season 1-4, with a 0-2 road record and a 1-1 record at neutral ground. The Eagles’ defense was effective against opposing shooters, allowing a 42.2 percent mark from the floor to rank third in the Big Sky. After struggling over the board in the first two games of the season, Eastern improved his game with a rebounding margin of plus 27 in the last three games. The Eagles are fourth in the Big Sky with 36.8 team-wide rebounds per game and lead with 28.2 defensive rebounds per game. In addition, the defense in the paint was active, finishing third in the conference with 3.20 blocks per game, 16 in total for the season.
Ethan Price averages 7.0 rebounds per game and ranks seventh in the conference. Price also leads the Big Sky with seven blocks, receiving 1.4 per game.
As a team, Eastern average 59.8 points per game. A pair of veterans lead the Eagles in scoring. Steel Venters is the top threat with 10.4 points per game and Angelo Allegri is almost double digits with a median of 9.8. Venters ranks 24thth in the Big Sky in scoring. Allegri leads the team with 13 assists this season.
Casey Jones 13 years oldth in the conference with 5.8 rebounds per game. The sophomore is also averaging 6.8 points per game.
Tyrese Davis was a consistent shooter for the Eagles, shooting 47.6 percent from the floor and averaging 7.8 points per game.
Cedric Coward has five steals this season to rank 18thth in the conference and is averaging 6.2 points per game.
Reconnaissance of sea wolves
Stony Brook leads the season 1-4, 0-4 away and 1-0 at home. The Seawolves lost to the Florida International on Wednesday (November 23), 83–50. The team beat Miami Hamilton 86–65 but lost to Florida (45–81), Rhode Island (64–74) and Brown (53–64). This season, Stony Brook is averaging 59.6 points per game and allowing opponents to score 73.4 points per game.
The Sea Wolves have 38.8 percent of hits, while the rivals have 42.9 percent.
Stony Brook boasts three players averaging double figures, led by senior defenseman Tyler Stevenson-Moore averaging 12.6 points per game. Junior forward Kenan Sarwen and graduate center Keenan Fitzmorris are averaging 11.0 and 10.0 points per game, respectively.
Friday’s game will be the first meeting between Eastern Washington and Stony Brook.
Florida International is 3-2 this season, 3-1 at home and 0-1 away. The Panthers beat Stony Brook 83–50 in the team’s last game. FIU defeated Houston Christian University (77-66) and Florida National University (95-74). The team lost to North Carolina State (74–107) and Bryant University (85–91).
The offense has been a source of success for the Panthers as the team averages 82.8 points per game. PFR allows opponents to score 77.6 points per game.
The pressure on the Panthers is on sophomore guard Denver Jones, who is averaging 20.4 points per game while shooting 62.7 percent from the field. Complementing Jones is freshman quarterback Arturo Dean, who averages 13.0 points per game and shoots 51.0% from the floor. Arturo is also second on the team with 17 assists.
Eastern will play Florida International for the first time in program history on Sunday.
Eastern Washington will play its first true home game on Wednesday, November 30 against Northwestern University. Pickup is scheduled for 6:00 pm from Reese Court.