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Vikings End Skid vs. UW-Milwaukee

Feb 17, 2013 -- 7:47pm

By Emmett Golden

After losing three games in a row Cleveland State got just what the doctor ordered. UW-Milwaukee came to the Wolstein Center without a road victory this season. That was a recipe for a blowout win for CSU. The Vikings snapped their losing streak with an 88-67 victory. Let’s take a look at my notebook.

Home Court -- The Vikings had a few things in their favor Sunday afternoon. They had one of the biggest crowds of the year and they were playing a team that had not won a game on the road all year. In the second half after some great offensive play by the Vikings the Wolstein Center exploded. CSU had their second-highest point total of the season as they dropped 88 on UW-Milwaukee.

Forbes List -- Freshman Bryn Forbes may have locked up the Horizon League Newcomer of the Year. Forbes is sixth in the HL in scoring averaging 14.9 a game and third in three-pointers with 32 made within the conference.

After the game head coach Gary Waters was asked if he thought Forbes could win the postseason award. “I think it should be freshman of the year,” said Waters. “He has scored enough to be that. He’s been consistent and that’s the biggest thing.” 

Above The Rim -- Freshman Junior Lomomba showed that his foot may have finally healed. Lomomba displayed some serious ups against UW-Milwaukee. “My foot is getting better and that’s how I used to play (before the injury),” said Lomomba.

He may have got the route started as he drove baseline and threw down a thunderous dunk. On the very next play sophomore Marlin Mason caught the high handoff from Charlie Lee to put CSU up 65-49. The game was pretty much over after that.

M.I.A. -- After starting the game and playing nine minutes in the first half sophomore guard Sebastian Douglas did not play in the second half. “There was something wrong with his knee braces, they broke. I told him that we would only put him in if we really needed him,” Waters said.

Douglas tore his ACL last year and wears a bulky knee brace to protect his knee. He has a back-up brace but that one was also broken during today’s game.

Spotlight too big for CSU as they fall to Green Bay

Feb 17, 2013 -- 7:45pm

By Emmett Golden

Cleveland State and Wisconsin-Green Bay took to the hardwood late Friday night on ESPN U. This game was a tale of two halves. The first half CSU played great defense and held two of the better players in the Horizon League to single-digit scoring. Then there was the second half where the Vikings struggled to score points and let the game slip away. Green Bay beat CSU 66-59 in front of 1,800 at the Wolstein Center. Let’s take a look at my postgame notebook.

Sykes Vs Lee - CSU point guard Charlie Lee had a tough match-up tonight. Green Bay’s Keifer Sykes is one of the best guards in the Horizon League. Sykes came in to this game averaging 14.8 points per game. Lee held Sykes to only four points in the first half.

Sykes turned it up in the second half to finish with 23 points. “I think he was just more aggressive. He got to the line and was nine-of-ten from there and he took over,” said head coach Gary Waters.  Lee also had a good night scoring the ball. The sophomore guard finished the night with 18 points.

National Spotlight - This was the fourth game this year Cleveland State has played on national television. The previous four all began with the Vikings trailing almost immediately. It was a different story against Green Bay. For most of the night CSU played under control and it didn’t seem like the lights were too bright for the young squad. Although Cleveland State lost they played much better on the big stage.

Bench Bunch - The Vikings committed seven fouls in the first six minutes of the game, sending starting guard Bryn Forbes to the bench at the 15:34 mark of the first half. CSU got some good minutes from freshman Josh Ivory and junior Luda Ndaye. “Luda had a good game out there. I thought he flashed and played hard tonight,” said Waters when asked about Ndaye’s impact on the game.

Waters Defense - CSU got back to playing Cleveland State defense. The Vikings have struggled this year defending the post but they did an excellent job against Green Bay in the first half. UWGB center Alec Brown who averages 13 points per game was a non-factor early in the game. “I thought we did a fabulous job in the first half but when you have big players that’s what they do, they step up,” said Waters.

Ndaye & Devin Long held Brown to just five points in the first half. Brown did bounce back in the second half to finish with 17 points. Brown had a nasty baseline dunk in the second half that was ESPN top ten worthy.

Second Half Horror - Cleveland State went in to the half leading 36-27 and scored the first four points of the second half, and then the wheels came off. Green Bay answered with a 15-0 run. On defense UWGB’s zone gave the Vikings fits.

CSU had a hard time finding open shots and it cost them the game. “I really don’t know why we struggled against it (the zone defense), We practice against it, so I don’t know why,” said guard Charlie Lee.

Valpo Crusades Past Vikings

Feb 09, 2013 -- 8:45pm

By Emmett Golden


Valparaiso came into the Wolstein center at the top of the Horizon League standings and played like a team looking to make some noise in March. Cleveland State, on the other hand, played like a young team nervous about playing on national television. CSU fought back in the second half but could not get Valpo’s lead under nine. When it was all said and done CSU fell to Valpo 80-72.

 

National Spotlight - This was the third time CSU played on national television. The previous two games ended in blowout losses. Although this wasn’t a blowout it was very close to being one all afternoon as Valpo looked very comfortable under the bright lights. The Crusaders looked like they were motivated from the tip. “Being on T.V. and on ESPN2 was some extra motivation,” said Valpo head coach Bryce Drew.

 

Head coach Gary Waters talked about his young team playing on national T.V. “I didn’t mention ESPN2 at all and I did that on purpose. They knew. We’re a young team and that first five minutes wasn’t us.”

Slow Start - The Vikings started the game about as bad as they possibly could. On the first play of the game Sebastian Douglas threw the ball into the backcourt which lead to a Ryan Broekhoff layup and sparked a 12-0 run to open up the game for the Crusaders. Broekhoff finished the game with 15 points.

The Vikings played a sloppy brand of basketball. CSU turned the ball over 12 times in the first half and State finished with 17 turnovers.

Forbes List - Freshman Bryn Forbes continues to be a reason for Vikings fans to be optimistic. Forbes was most of CSU’s offense in the first half, scoring ten points. If it wasn’t for the baby-faced guard this game would have been over early. Forbes was 8-10 from the field and finished the game with a career-high 24 points in 39 minutes.  

Waters kept Forbes on the floor knowing the Vikings needed his offense. “It was all about offense. He was playing hard on defense but I needed the offense,” said Waters.

Emmett Golden covers Ohio State football and joins Jerod Cherry and Will Burge on Three Deep from 7-9 p.m. Monday-Friday on ESPN 850 WKNR.

Follow Emmett on Twitter @EGoldie80

 

Ramblers Roll Over Vikings

Jan 23, 2013 -- 10:21pm

By Emmett Golden


 

The Cleveland State Vikings returned home to face the Loyola Ramblers before hitting the road again. CSU looked to be enjoying the home cooking for the first 35 minutes of the game, but the wheels fell off in the last five minutes of the game as the Vikings dropped a tough one 67-55. Let’s take a look at the post game notebook.

 

Hot Start For Mason - Sophomore forward Marlin Mason entered the game at the 16:50 mark in the first half and provided a big lift. Mason scored eight points in only six minutes before heading to the bench with two fouls. “We got something from Marlin tonight but I look at him as a starter because Tim (Kamczyc) was in foul trouble,” said head coach Gary Waters.

 

Mason finished the night with ten points and four rebounds.

 

Forbes List - Freshman Bryn Forbes continues to be a bright spot for the Vikings. Forbes who finished with a career high 22 points scored in double digits for the 12th straight game and 13 of his last 14 games. “Forbes is going to be a premiere player in this league,” said Loyola head coach Porter Moser.

 

Forbes has proven he can be a force even when the other team is keying on him. “He’s the only shooter on the floor and there’s no one else to help him and he’s still making shots,” said Waters.

 

Long Story - Big man Devon Long, who has been one of the most inconsistent Vikings, played well against the Ramblers. Long finished with eight points and four rebounds. “We have to use Devon,” said Waters when asked about the junior’s presence in upcoming games.

 

Tough Loss - Cleveland State seemed to have this one in the bag. Then it all came crashing down. In the last five minutes The Vikings were outscored 17-0 and had five turnovers. “We hit a dry spell, we couldn’t score, we couldn’t rebound. I don’t know what happened,” said Forbes.

 

You could see that Forbes truly had no idea how CSU lost a game that they seemed to be in control of.

 

With this being a young team that has not played in many close games this season you would expect some mistakes in tight games. “Yeah, but some of those mistakes were made by veterans,” said Waters.

 

Emmett Golden covers Ohio State football and joins Jerod Cherry and Will Burge on Three Deep from 7-9 p.m. Monday-Friday on ESPN 850 WKNR.

Follow Emmett on Twitter @EGoldie80

 

Vikings Look Towards A Bright Future Despite A Rough Start

Jan 21, 2013 -- 5:06pm

By Emmett Golden


Cleveland State head coach Gary Waters knew this season would be a tough one.  After returning home from a two-game road trip where the Vikings lost both games (a 12-point loss at Milwaukee followed by a 27-point loss at Green Bay), Waters knows he has his work cut out for him. “Everything went the opposite way on that trip,” said Waters, “We took a half-step back.”

 

Twenty games into the season CSU finds themselves at .500 (10-10). Five of those ten losses have been by 24 points or more. Their biggest loss was an 87-53 whooping at the hands of St. Bonaventure. Coach Waters was asked how the Vikings could find some consistency: “I have to take the team back to doing what we do, especially on the defensive end,” said Waters, “We were trying to win the game instead of doing what we do and letting it play out.”

 

Supporting Cast -- When you take a look at the CSU roster you see a lot of nice pieces. The one thing that you don’t see is “the guy.”

 

Sophomore Anton Grady was going to be the leader of the team until he suffered a torn meniscus in his knee that will more than likely keep him out for the season.

 

Since Grady’s injury the Vikings have struggled to find a leader on the court, although the sophomore big man’s voice is still being heard. “When we go into the locker room, he’s the number one guy that’s upset,” said Waters, “He always says this ain’t going to happen next year.”  

 

Bright Future -- When you talk to coach Waters about the future you can see the excitement in his eyes. With Grady returning from injury, Penn State transfer Trey Lewis and a promising recruiting class the Vikings will be a force to reckon with next year.

 

That’s great for the future but you don’t want a season of losing to hurt the growth of this team. Waters realizes that he has his work cut out for him. “I don’t want to wait until next year,” said Waters “I feel good about this, because now I have to go to work.”

 

On a holiday that celebrates the courage and the will to never give up, CSU’s head coach found some inspiration. He talked about needing to reach his young team with a strong message. “I woke up this morning, I was looking for something to bring to these kids and I must have written for two hours,” said Waters. He told us that his message would be about perseverance and the will to succeed.

 

Let’s hope the young Cleveland State roster pays close attention. 

 

 

Emmett Golden covers Ohio State football and joins Jerod Cherry and Will Burge on Three Deep from 7-9 p.m. Monday-Friday on ESPN 850 WKNR.

Follow Emmett on Twitter @EGoldie80

 

Vikings Win Clash with the Titans

Jan 12, 2013 -- 9:13pm

By Emmett Golden


The Vikings returned to the Wolstein Center after losing on the road to Wright State earlier in the week to take on the Detroit Titans. Cleveland State had their biggest crowd of the season (4,101), and you could feel the energy from the opening tip. The Vikings held the lead for the entire game and beat Detroit 74-62. Let’s take a look in my post game notebook.

 

Let’s Get It Started - Cleveland State has been notorious for starting slow this year. With 14:39 left in the first half CSU had a 16-7 lead. At that point the tone had been set. “We want to get back to what we do defensively and that’s play Cleveland State basketball,” said sophomore Sebastian Douglas. Douglas, who played point guard for most of the second half with Charlie Lee in foul trouble finished with 11 points and two steals.

 

Forbes List - Freshman Bryn Forbes continues to play at a high level. Forbes was red hot in the first half as he scored 19 of his team-high 21 points, also a career high, in the opening frame. The young Viking also had a career high in rebounds with eight. “Yeah, that was a miracle,” head coach Gary Waters joked after the game. 

 

Forbes, a native of Michigan said there was a little extra motivation playing against Detroit. “I played against Ray (Detroit point guard Ray McCallum Jr.) in the state championship and he had 28. So yeah I wanted to beat him for sure,” said Forbes.   

 

I asked Detroit head coach Ray McCallum Sr. if the Titans recruited Forbes out of high school. “We recruited him but Cleveland State recruited him a little better then we did. Let’s say that,” said McCallum Sr.     

 

Luda & Long - Junior big men Luda Ndaye and Devon Long combined for ten points and ten rebounds against Detroit. That’s a pretty solid game from two players that have been inconsistent throughout the year. “15 and eight is my goal for these. We need that from them because that’s what Anton gave us,” said Waters. 

 

Baby Blake - If you have never seen Detroit’s Doug Anderson play then you’re missing out. The senior forward, one of the best dunkers in all of college basketball, reminds me of Blake Griffin. If you have a chance to see Detroit play on T.V. be sure to check them out. You won’t regret it.

 

NBA Star In The House - Former Golden State Warrior and Miami Heat player Tim Hardaway was at the Wolstein Center doing some scouting for the Heat. Detroit’s Ray McCallum Jr. is an NBA prospect and will play at the next level. McCallum finished with 22 points. Looks like the Heat may have some interest.  

 

Detroit Free Throws - Detroit was down right awful at the free throw line. The Titans were 13-32 from the stripe. It’s difficult to beat anyone when you shot that badly from the line.

 

Emmett Golden covers Ohio State football and joins Jerod Cherry and Will Burge on Three Deep from 7-9 p.m. Monday-Friday on ESPN 850 WKNR.

Follow Emmett on Twitter @EGoldie80

 

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