This archived article was written by: David Osborne Jr.
The Golden Eagles have spent a little over a month preparing throughout the preseason for their region schedule. With one weekend of the preseason left, the team has a 7-3 record, going 2-2 at home, 1-1 away and a perfect 4-0 in neutral site games.
Over the last two weekends the Golden Eagles have been on the road playing in tournaments in Idaho and Wyo., respectively. On Nov. 21, the team played Treasure Valley Community College in Twin Falls, Idaho. The team was able to take away a 10-point victory, winning 89-79. Josh Van Weezep led the team with 22 points, shooting 50 percent from the field, and going 6-12 from deep.
On Nov. 22, the team played Planet Athlete Academy. They easily handled the opponent taking a 107-65 victory. Five players posted double-digit scoring totals. Nathaniel Wright led the team with 15 points, he added 10 rebounds for a double double. Marcelo Ruediguer also posted a double double with 11 points and 10 rebounds. The team shot an outstanding 51 percent from the field and almost 77 percent from the free-throw line.
During the Thanksgiving weekend, the team traveled to Wyo., to play in another tournament. On Nov. 28, the team tipped-off against Eastern Wyoming College, with an impressive defensive night, the team was able to post a 96-78 victory. The Golden Eagles recorded 10 total steals and held EWC to 39 percent shooting from the floor. Led by Juwan Moody, coming of the bench and scoring 21 points, the team had four players with double-digit scoring totals. Wright helped the team with a double double, scoring 16 points and bringing down 13 rebounds.
The following day the Golden Eagles played the tournament host Western Wyoming Community College. Unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, they were in for a rough shooting night, only hitting 24 of the 64 attempted shots and while making it to the free-throw line 26 times, and only connecting on 17. Western Wyoming was able to shoot 46 percent from the field and attempted an outstanding 52 free throws, making 38 of them. At the final buzzer the team lost 80-71. Royale Ewing led the Golden Eagles with 18 points followed by Van Weezep with 16.
Talking about region games being right around the corner for the team, head coach Adjalma “Vando” Becheli said, “Our offense isn’t a problem, we score enough to win every game. Of course we can always tweak some things to make it better like screen angles and posting up.” The team is currently averaging 95 points per game, and average almost 50 percent field goal percentage as a team.
“We do need to pick things up on defense, especially with our region. During the spring semester, we only have three region home games,” Becheli added. “We are going to have to fight through a lot of adversity because we aren’t going to get a lot of calls that we would get at home.”
The key for the Golden Eagles to having a good run during region play is to play solid defense and get out and run the floor, hopefully leading to easy baskets, and Vando has complete faith that his team can do just that.
The team plays their final six games of 2014 at home in the Bunnell-Dmitrich Athletic Center, they host Impact Academy on Dec. 5 and 6, and have a 1-1 record against Impact so far this season.
The following weekend Region 18 play starts for the Golden Eagles hosting fifth-ranked Salt Lake Community College on Dec. 11, and the following day will host the Snow College Badgers. On Dec. 18, the team will host the second ranked College of Southern Idaho before finishing out 2014 hosting the North Idaho College Cardinals on Dec. 19. The team will then break for winter break and will not play again until Jan. 3, 2015 when they will host the Southern Colorado Kings.