Tuesday, December 9, 2008

PSU leads at halftime 37-30

After a dismal start that saw the Vikings trail by as many as eight points early on, Portland State has regained their focus and lead the Pioneers by seven heading into halftime.

Were it not for the performance of two backups, senior Mickey Polis and junior Julius Thomas, the first half could have been a disaster for the Vikings. Through the first twenty minutes the squad has 10 turnovers and has struggled to make consistent shots or defend the ball well.

Thomas, filling in for the struggling Jamie Jones has eight points and five rebounds but it was three three-pointers from Polis that gave the Vikings the lead at 17-16.

If Viking fans were worried about the team looking a little sluggish, they were right. Despite boasting a height advantage at nearly every position, the squad has struggled to score in the paint. Worse yet, the Pioneers quickness and versatility on offense is posing problems for the Viking defense.

Juniors Kyle Coston and Tyrell Mara are a combined one for eight shooting with three turnovers between them. Phil Nelson looks out of sync on offense and Jones' struggles in the paint have kept the Pioneers close.

Thankfully, Coston and Mara have done a good job containing Lewis and Clark's leading scorer heading into the game, holding the senior to just two points. The Pioneers are bombing the ball from deep with mixed results: think air ball, three pointer, air ball...

Despite the ragged start, I expect head coach Ken Bone to whip the troops into shape for twenty minutes of solid basketball.

Notes: Not sure what makes me more sad: Seeing former Viking point guard Brian Curtis participating in the halftime halfcourt shot for a free pizza, and bragging that he made it, or watching former Viking wide receiver Reggie Joseph mop the floor down during the break in front of athletic director Torre Chisholm and offensive coordinator Mouse Davis. Talk about awkward...

Funniest moment of the first half: after a solid colision that saw Pioneer guard James Hollins level the tiny Mickey Polis, one of the spandex clad student section tracksters shouted out, "You should try out for the football team... Maybe they would win a game... Maybe."

The reference was not lost on yours truly. The Pioneers are awful in football after reinstating their program three or four years ago.

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