Big Sky Tournament Preview

13 Mar

Big Sky

March 14-16

Favorite(s)-Montana (23-6 19-1), Weber State (24-5 18-2)

All year long the Big Sky has been a two-team race and despite being riddled with injuries to two of its stars, Will Cherry and Mathias Ward the Grizzlies were able to secure the #1 seed.  They still have junior guard Kareem Jamar who averages 14.1 points, 5.9 rebounds and 4.1 assists.  Cherry and Ward are done for the season, but the Grizzlies could still be looking good for another NCAA bid.

Weber State earned the 2-seed finishing a hair behind Montana for the title.  The Wildcats are good, real good.  Since a 10-point loss at BYU on Dec. 15th they finished the season going 20-2, and those two losses were by a total of 7 points. They average 75.8 points a game and they go seven deep with a veteran squad with only one of the contributors, Gelaun Wheelwright being a sophomore and the rest being juniors and seniors led by junior Davion Berry’s 15.1 points.

Contender(s)-North Dakota (15-5 12-8)

North Dakota’s duo of juniors Aaron Anderson and Troy Huff and their 32.8 points, 10.5 rebounds and 4.4 assists are the only hope the conference has of someone being able to beat Montana and Weber State.

Team Likely to pull an upset-None.

3 Key Players-Kareem Jamar-Montana, Davion Berry-Weber State, Troy Huff-North Dakota

With fellow guard Will Cherry down for the season after reinjuring his foot and Mathias Ward also done for the year, junior Kareem Jamar is the only member of the Grizzlies who is not only averaging double figures (14.1), he is the only one over eight points a game.  After barely hanging on to the top seed in the Big Sky over Weber State, Montana will need every bit those points and his 5.9 rebounds if they want to advance to the NCAA Tournament.

Junior Davion Berry leads Weber State as the #2 seed in the conference tournament.  The 6-5 Berry leads a top-25 offense at 15.1 points per game but for the Wildcats to be a success he needs to also contribute more consistently on the glass and in finding open teammates, something he did a little better in February averaging 4.5 assists a game.

North Dakota finished 3rd in the Big Sky and a big reason was junior Troy Huff.  The Milwaukee native averaged 19.2 points and 7.1 rebounds a game despite missing 8 games following the season opener with Kansas State.  Huff has been as consistent as could be since returning, scoring at least 18 points in 14 of the 20 games since, including five double-doubles.

 

2013 BIG SKY TOURNAMENT

March 14-16 Regular Season Champion

Thursday, March 14
Quarterfinals

No. 7 Northern Arizona vs. No. 2 Weber State
No. 6 Southern Utah vs. No. North Dakota
No. 5 Northern Colorado vs. No. 4 Montana State

Friday, March 15

Semifinal No. 1

#1 Montana vs.
Semifinal No. 2

Saturday, March 16
Championship

 

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