Umipig-led Seattle U men stay perfect at home
Junior guard scores career-high 30 in 77-53 rout of UC Davis, leaving Redhawks 4-0 at KeyArena
Seattle Times staff reporter
Their record says the Redhawks are unbeatable at home and hapless on the road.
Good thing for the Seattle University men’s basketball team that Monday’s game took place at KeyArena.
Even though a season-low crowd of 844 witnessed the Redhawks’ 77-53 victory over UC Davis and the 17,200-seat arena felt cold and lifeless for most of the game, the Key has become a special place for SU, which is 4-3 — but 4-0 at home.
“Just like any team when you play at home, you feel more comfortable,” said junior guard Isiah Umipig, who finished with a career-high 30 points. “You have your home crowd cheering for you.”
Some of the loudest applause came from fans watching the Seahawks dismantle New Orleans on big-screen televisions inside the building, but the Redhawks also gave their faithful plenty to cheer about.
The junior guard drained six three-pointers, hit 8 of 16 field-goal attempts and sank 8 of 9 free throws in a dazzling 34-minute display. He also had five rebounds, four assists and two steals.
“That’s how he’s always played,” SU coach Cameron Dollar said. “I think the game is slowing down for him. Sometimes you can think as a point (guard) that you have so much responsibility and you have so much to do, but actually you don’t.
“Just relax. Make the right read that’s in front of you. Take your time on your shots. I thought he was much more relaxed.”
Umipig, Shore Adenken (career-high 16 points) and Jack Crook (10) accounted for nearly three-fourths of SU’s offense.
“The ball moved really well,” Dollar said. “It went from side to side, corner to corner, shot fake, drive kick, swing, swing (for) a lot of open and uncontested shots that were brought about by good ball movement and good man movement.”
The Redhawks shot 51.9 percent from the field and finished with 16 assists.
As good as SU was offensively, Dollar raved about a defensive effort spearheaded by Adenekan, who had five blocks. The Aggies (3-6) shot just 33.9 percent from the field and 7 of 27 (25.9 percent) on three-pointers.
Both teams started slowly. The Aggies led 6-2 with 15:55 minutes left in the first half and 10-9 at the 13:07 mark.
That’s when SU took over and never looked back. Adenekan’s layup tput the Redhawks up 28-17 with 5:24 remaining, and they took a 38-20 lead into halftime.
Percy Allen: 206-464-2278 or firstname.lastname@example.org