Maverick Maniac's Musings

November 20, 2011

2011-12 UNO Men’s Basketball – Game 4 Preview – South Dakota

Filed under: College Sports,Men's Basketball,Omaha Mavericks — Jon Green @ 11:59 am

UNO get’s the 3rd shot at Summit League upset as they travel to South Dakota on Sunday. Interestingly the only UNO player who has ever played against South Dakota is Mitch Albers. Mitch was a freshman four years ago in South Dakota’s final Division II season. Mitch scored just three points in the game at South Dakota and just four points in the home game as the home teams won both games.  John Ring was also on the roster that year, but redshirted. Coach Hansen will be very familiar with the trip up to South Dakota, but for most of the other members of this team it will be a new experience.

South Dakota

The University of South Dakota was founded in 1862 and is located in Vermillion, SD. It’s around 45 minute NW of Sioux City. USD was formerly a member of the NCC but moved to Division I in 2008-09. They are in their first year of official Summit League membership.

South Dakota has a good basketball history. They were the National Collegiate Small College Champion in 1958 and won 12 NCC titles over the years. In 1993 and 1994 they were in the Division II Elite 8. They have not lost more than three home games in the last 23 years.

USD’s last game as a 70-61 loss at Eastern Washington on Tuesday. USD got off to a good start leading 5-0 but fell behind as Eastern Washington took control and a 38-24 lead at that half.  Things got even worse in the 2nd half as Eastern Washington extend their lead to 17 at 45-28. USD got back within 10 at 52-42 with just over nine minutes left, but weren’t able to get any closer until the final bucket made it 70-61.

Charlie Westbrook led South Dakota with 16 points, all in the 2nd half, Brandon Bos was the only other player in double figures with 10. Ricardo Andreotti led South Dakota with nine rebounds as South Dakota was outrebounded 40-37. South Dakota shot 40% from the field, 35% from three, and Eastern Washington shot 40%, 37% from three. Interestingly South Dakota’s starters only played 102 minutes (51%).

Starters: 
Guard – Charlie Westbrook – 6-4 Senior – Milwaukee, Wis. – Averaging 13 points, 1.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals.
Guard – Louis Krogman – 6-1 Senior – White River, S.D. – Averaging 12.5 points, 2.5 rebounds and two assists.
Forward – Ricardo Andreotti – 6-8 Senior – Sao Paulo, Brazil – Averaging four points, eight rebounds and 1.5 assists.
Forward – Allen Saint-Gelais – 6-7 Junior – Guadeloupe, France – Averaging 2.5 points, three rebounds, and 0.5 assists.
Center – Trevor Gruis – 6-10 Sophomore – Ellsworth, Minn. – Averaging 4.5 points, two rebounds and 0.5 blocks.

USD has the odd combination of five international players (in addition to Andreotti and Saint-Gelais they have a player from England and two from Ontario) and five native South Dakotans. USD is average 64 possessions, much slower than UNO who is averaging 72. UNO will probably look to push things vs. South Dakota who will want to slow things down some. USD’s offensive rating is only 84.73, but that includes a game against Nebraska who is great defensively. Their defense rating is 104.94, so there might be some ability to score against them.

All-time USD leads the series 49-42 and have won four of five, but UNO did win the last game.

UNO

Last time out UNO put up a great effort against UMKC and led by as many as seven before falling behind late. Caleb Steffensmeier hit a jumper in the paint to tie things with 36 seconds left, but Reggie Chamberlain hit a three with just two seconds left to give UKMC a 77-74 win. UNO played well offensively, led by Mitch Albers’ 26 and  John Karhoff’s 18, but defensively they were suspect, especially against the three.

Starters:
Guard – Caleb Steffensmeier – 6-1 Sophomore from  Omaha, Neb. – Averaging 5.7 points, two rebound and 3.3 assists.
Guard – C.J. Carter – 6-0 Freshman from Omaha, Neb. – Averaging 11.7 points, 2.7 rebounds, and 1.7 assists.
Guard – Mitch Albers – 6-4 Senior from Papillion, Neb. – Averaging 23.7 points, 2.7 rebounds, and six assists.
Forward – Alex Welhouse – 6-7 Junior from Kaukauna, Wis. – Averaging 9.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 0.7 assists.
Center – John Karhoff – 6-8 Sophomore from Omaha, Neb. – Averaging 13.7 points, four rebounds, and 1.3 assists.

3 Things to watch:

1) Mitch’s supporting cast – Mitch Albers is playing phenomenal. He’s averaging 23.7 points and six assists. He’s shooting 27-37 from inside the arc. He’s shooting 82% from the FT line. But Mitch can’t do everything and teams are going to find a way to shut him down for stretches. It’s important UNO figures out how to play if Mitch can’t get it going. CJ Carter did a great job in Kansas City stepping up down the stretch. John Karhoff has been great, but how much of his game is dependent on Mitch drawing attention with his penetration? UNO has four players other than Mitch averaging over eight points so I think they are capable of helping out.

2.) Alex Welhouse’s supporting cast – This might be more troubling. Alex Welhouse has done a phenomenal job getting inside and rebounding the ball. He has 26 boards on the year, more than the next two players combined (Karhoff with 12 and Freeman with 11). While this is great to see since Alex is going to have to take on that responsibility, we need to see more boards out of the center position (Karhoff and Ring/Hagerbaumer). Freeman has been great from the guard spot so UNO might look to use him in situations where they need added presence.

3.) Defense, especially against the 3 – UNO got beat by UMKC in large part because they allowed too many threes. This wasn’t a strength of UMKC coming in, just as it isn’t for South Dakota (29% on 22 threes a game). However if UNO allows USD to get open looks, I imagine they’ll knock a lot of them down.

Prediction: I’m not going with UNO in this one. USD traditionally has played very well at home and I imagine they’ll do enough to get the W. USD wins 78-72.

Linkage:
USD Pregame Release
UNO Pregame Release
Omaha.com Pregame Info
Live Stats
Live Video ($9.95)
Live Audio

I’d recommend following myself (@maverickmaniacs) and UNO’s Basketball twitter account (@UNO_Basketball) for updates.

Go Mavs!

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