UP NEXT – Dixie State College begins a stretch of five straight home games beginning Thursday when the Dominican Penguins return to St. George for a Pacific West Conference matchup. Both teams enter the fray on small winning streaks — for Dominican, their first wins of the 2010-2011 season. DSC defeated Dominican 74-52 on January 20 inside the Conlan Center. On Saturday, the Red Storm renews PWC play with the Academy of Art University from San Francisco. The Knights have hit a small rough patch losing three in a row. DSC downed AAU 78-63 on January 17 in a game played at the City College of San Francisco.
RED STORM WATCH – The Red Storm, the defending PacWest Conference Co-Champions, are currently led by Tom Whitehead, averaging a team-high 13.4 points a game. Griffon Jones (10.8 PPG), the only other Red Storm player in double-figure scoring average this season, pulls down on average 5.6 boards. Dixie State is scoring 70.7 points per game and holding opponents to 62.0 points per contest – a differential of 8.7 points. DSC is pulling down an average of 36.6 rebounds in a game (+2.2 over opponents) and has been stingy on defense, forcing 16.3 turnovers each game.
THURSDAY’s OPPONENT – After a sluggish 0-16 start to the season, the Dominican Penguins have turned the tables and begun to put the freeze on conference opponents. Since the last meeting with Dixie State on Jan. 20, the Penguins have won three of their last four games.
Senior forward Leon Hart paced DU in a 61-58 win over geographic rival NDNU at the Conlan Center in San Rafael last Saturday. The club shot 60% from beyond the three point arc – which should be a good test against the Red Storm who lead the Pacific West Conference in 3-point field goal defense.
Post player Killlian Larson currently leads the club averaging 11.9 points and 6.1 rebounds per game. Veteran head coach Bret Tovani is in his sixth year at the helm.
RED STORM vs. DOMINICAN IN THE PACIFIC WEST
Dixie State 74, Dominican 72 (1/18 in San Rafael)
Dixie State 73, Dominican 64 (2/25 in St. George)
Dixie State 74, Dominican 52 (1/20 in San Rafael)
Overall Record: 3-0
SATURDAY’s OPPONENT – The Urban Knights continue to make history in their third year of basketball operations and second year in the Pacific West Conference. On Jan. 20, Academy downed Grand Canyon 60-58 to earn their first PWC win in school history. Keith Davis sparked the win with a late bucket. Davis repeated his dynamics with the game-winner against Hawaii-Hilo in the historic Kezar Pavilion days later.
Since then, AAU has lost three in a row including a 74-71 loss at NDNU on Monday.
Leading the Knights in scoring is a candidate for PWC Freshman of the Year, Will Overton Jr. The fantastic frosh nets 18.2 points per game exhibiting shooting touch from anywhere on the floor. Davis follows with a 16.1 PPG average. Hunter Hayden is the leading rebounder (7.1 a game) – he had a school-record 20 boards in the 78-63 loss to DSC on Jan. 17.
Mark Sembrowich is in his second year as head coach after spending time as the recruiting coordinator at Stanford and as an assistant coach at Army.
RED STORM vs. ACADEMY OF ART IN THE PACIFIC WEST
Dixie State 78, Academy of Art 62 (12/22 in St. George)
Dixie State 69, Academy of Art 51 (1/16 in San Francisco)
Dixie State 88, Academy of Art 77 (2/27 in St. George)
Dixie State 78, Academy of Art 63 (1/17 in San Francisco)
Overall Record: 4-0
REGIONALLY SPEAKING – Dixie State moved up two spots to No. 6 in the latest West Region ranking released Wednesday. The Red Storm are the highest Pac West ranked team just ahead of BYU Hawaii (#7), Chaminade (#8) and Grand Canyon (#9).
JUDKINS APPROACHING CAREER MILESTONE – Head Coach Jon Judkins is seven wins away from number 100 in his Dixie State College tenure and 23 wins away from 400 for his career.
WHERE THE HEART GROWS FONDER – Beginning Thursday, the next five Pac West games will be contested in the comfy confines of Burns Arena. The Red Storm are 2-2 this year at home – beating Pacifica College and Chaminade while losing back-to-back to Grand Canyon and BYU-Hawaii in January.
HONOR ROLL FOR DP – Senior guard Donovan Plunkett earned a PWC honor roll spot after scoring a game-high 19 point against Grand Canyon on Saturday. He hit all three triple tries in Phoenix. It is the third straight week the Red Storm has had only one member on the PWC report – forward Griffon Jones was the honoree the previous two weeks.
STORM ON THE RADIO – Dixie State games can be heard on KXDS (91.3 FM) with John Potter calling the play-by-play. At home games, Potter is joined by former DSC assistant coach Mike Olson.
LIVE STATS – Fans can follow Red Storm home games through the DSC web site at www.DixieAthletics.com via Sidearm Sports, a free service, which updates play-by-play and statistics throughout the game. Road game live stats will be available through DixieAthletics.com on the front page calendar.
ON THE INTERNET – All of Dixie State’s home games are available to watch live through America One via the internet at www.DixieAthletics.com. DSC fans can also listen to every game both home and away thanks to Network1Sports.com, via DSC’s web site. Select games on the road will also be available. Check the front page calendar on DixieAthletics.com for availability.