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Inside look at high school and Oakland University sports from Oakland Press sports writer Dave Pemberton.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Summit League power rankings 2-23-09

1. North Dakota State (21-6, 14-2 Summit) — The Bison routed rival South Daktoa State on senior night and then went on the road to beat Wisconsin-Milwaukee, which is 10-6 in the Horizon League and was coming off a win over No. 22 Butler. NDSU now hits the road with hopes of clinching its first Summit League championship and at least an NIT berth. The Bison play at reeling Centenary and then at Oral Roberts in a showdown that will likely determine the league champion. NDSU could still win the league with a loss at ORU because the tiebreaker is still up in the air.
2. Oral Roberts (15-13, 13-3) — The Golden Eagles dominated a pair of road games last week to stay in the regular-season title hunt. ORU beat Southern Utah and UMKC by a combined scored of 157-108 and hit 18 3-pointers in the two wins. Oral Roberts is 6-0 in league play when it hits six or more 3-pointers in a game. To truly see how dominant the Golden Eagles were at UMKC click here.
3. Oakland (18-11, 11-5) — The Golden Grizzlies swept a pair of road games last week and have now won five straight as they prepare to end the regular-season with a pair of home games. Oakland clinched at least the third seed with the win over IUPUI. Junior point guard Johnathon Jones tied his career-high with 15 assists against the Jaguars and now has 65 assists (13 per game) in his last five games. Freshman Blake Cushingberry scored a career-high 24 points at IUPUI and hit his first seven shots, including four 3-pointers.
4. Southern Utah (10-17, 8-8) — The Thunderbirds clinched a conference tournament berth with their win over Centenary. SUU has now beat every team in the league except Oral Roberts, which routed the Thunderbirds, 64-46, last week. Senior John Clifford had a double-double in the final home game of his career, finishing with 13 points and a career-high 16 rebounds against the Gents. Davis Baker scored a career-high 28 in the victory and continues to make a strong case to be on the all-league team.
5. IUPUI (15-13, 8-9) — The Jaguars trailed by 20 with 11:26 left against Oakland after head coach Ron Hunter got ejected. IUPUI rallied to pull within three and had the ball with less than a minute left, but a Robert Glenn 3-pointer was off the mark. OU sealed the game at the free-throw line from there. The Jaguars clinched a conference tournament berth with their win over IPFW earlier in the week. IUPUI has just one game left at Western Illinois and could end up playing just about anyone in the tournament based on how the final week plays out.
6. South Dakota State (12-17, 7-9) — The Jacks can clinch a conference tournament berth with a win or a Centenary loss this week. SDSU, which is 1-13 on the road this season, is still looking for its first Summit League road win. The Jacks are 0-16 all-time in Summit League road games. SDSU fell by four, 66-62, at 7-17 Cal Poly in its ESPN Bracketbusters game. Sophomore Dale Moss is averaging 20 points a game in his last three as he fills in for the injured Clint Sargent.
7. IPFW (11-16, 6-10) — The Mastodons can clinch a tournament spot with a win over last-place UMKC Thursday. If IPFW wins both home games next week, it could move as high as the fifth seed. Senior Jakari Johnson scored a season-high 17 points off the bench in the Mastodons win over Western Illinois. Senior David Carson scored eight points in IPFW's loss to IUPUI. The Mastodons are 0-6 this season when Carson fails to score in double figures.
8. Western Illinois (9-19, 6-11) — The Leathernecks were outscored 159-126 in a pair of home losses last week to Oakland and IPFW. WIU has just one game left and could still make the tournament with a loss, but would need Centenary to loss both of its home games next week. Freshman Ceola Clark averaged 25.5 points a game and hit eight 3-pointers in the Leathernecks two losses last week.
9. Centenary (7-21, 5-11) — The Gents dropped two more last week and have now lost seven in a row. Leading scorer Nick Stalling averaged just five points a game in the pair of losses last week. The Gents will need to win both home games this week or win one and have Western Illinois lose at home to IUPUI to make the tournament. Centenary would win the tiebreaker with WIU based on its win over Oakland.
10. UMKC (7-22, 3-13) — Freshman Fred Ford’s layup with sixth tenths of a second remaining lifted the Kangaroos over Centenary and snapped their eight-game losing streak. UMKC was then embarrassed, 93-62, by Oral Roberts on senior night. On a positive note, senior Dane Brumagin was able to play in his final home game and scored 16 points in 24 minutes.

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Anonymous Scott Nagy said...

Isn't 66-62 only a four point margin Mr. Pemberton.

February 23, 2009 at 1:34 PM 
Blogger Dave Pemberton said...


Your are correct. Thanks for pointing that out and I have edited it. As you can see I wasn't a math major.

February 23, 2009 at 3:02 PM 

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