Road Trip Ends for Eagles Saturday at MSU

After setback to preseason favorite Montana, Eastern faces yet another challenge in Bozeman

Complete Release in .PDF Format

Upcoming Games

Saturday, Jan. 5 - Worthington Arena (7,250) - Bozeman, Mont.
6:05 p.m. Pacific - Eastern Washington (3-10/1-2) at Montana State (4-7/1-2)

Thursday, Jan. 10 - Reese Court (5,000) - Cheney, Wash.
6:05 p.m. Pacific - Northern Arizona at Eastern Washington

Coaches Show

Tuesdays at 6 p.m. at The Swinging Doors in North Spokane . . . 700-AM ESPN, & via iphone app. (search for “Spokane Radio” and download app). Shows are each Tuesday from Jan. 8 to March 12 and feature head coach Jim Hayford and host Larry Weir. The Swinging Doors is located at W. 1018 Francis in Spokane.


TV: None.
All Eastern games are on 700-AM ESPN in Spokane. Larry Weir returns for his 20th season calling the play-by-play, starting 20 minutes prior to tipoff.
Internet Radio: or
Radio iPhone App:
Search for “Spokane Radio” and download app. An app is also available for tunein radio.
Live Stats: (web/EWU Home Games) or (mobile phones/EWU Home Games)  . . . MONTANA STATE GAME


The challenges keep on mounting for the Eastern Washington University men’s basketball team.

The Eagles end their annual trek to Montana this Saturday (Jan. 5) when they face Montana State in Bozeman at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time.

The radio broadcast of all Eastern games is on 700-AM ESPN, via the web at and via iPhone application (search for “700 ESPN” and download the free app). The broadcast is also available via and tunein’s mobile phone app. Larry Weir returns for his 20th year as the play-by-play voice of the Eagles.

Eastern is coming off an 81-66 loss to Montana, which is the preseason favorite to repeat as Big Sky Conference champion. The Eagles fell to 1-2 in the league and 3-10 overall with the loss, while Montana improved to 3-0 in the Big Sky and 7-4 overall.

Montana State, meanwhile, beat Portland State 62-59 at home on Thursday, improving the Bobcats to 1-2 in the league and 4-7 overall. Following this week’s games, Eastern returns to Reese Court to host Northern Arizona on Jan. 10 and Sacramento State on Jan. 12 in a pair of games that start at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time.

The Bobcats feature a guard-oriented lineup which ranks 20th in NCAA in turnover margin – MSU is averaging just 13.0 turnovers and forcing a league-leading 17.9 per game. Eastern is ninth in the Big Sky in turnover margin with averages of 13.1 committed and 11.0 forced.

“They are a very athletic team,” Eastern head coach Jim Hayford said of the Bobcats. “They don’t have as much size, but they are going to try to get after us and create some havoc on defense. I would imagine they will want to do that even more against a team on the second game of a road trip.”

In addition, Eastern will be playing its second game with a new starting point guard in the lineup, with Justin Crosgile no longer on the team after starting the first 12 games. Hayford’s regular rotation of players includes a trio of true freshmen and a pair of sophomores. Senior Kevin Winford and true freshman Daniel Hill are filling the point guard role.

“It’s a game where we are really going to have to play with composure and poise,” added Hayford. “That’s the challenge of the next one.”

Until its game at Montana, Eastern hadn’t played since beating Idaho State 57-54 on Dec. 22, and the extended break allowed the youthful Eagles to get more coveted practice time. The Idaho State win snapped EWU’s four-game losing streak, including a league-opening 74-53 loss to Weber State. The Wildcats were picked to finish second in the league standings behind Montana, which defeated EWU in the semifinals (74-66) and Weber State in the championship game (85-66) of the 2012 league tournament.

A year ago, Eastern won both meetings against the Bobcats, including an 82-66 triumph in Bozeman. The Eagles and Bobcats have one common opponent – MSU opened the season with an 87-72 loss at Seattle on Nov. 11 and EWU fell at home to the Redhawks by a 75-69 score on Dec. 10.


PDF Link to Fact Book

The complete version of the 2012 EWU men’s basketball fact book may be found at:


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Quick Shots

* After leading NCAA Division I in 3-pointers made per game through games of Nov. 30, Eastern is now sixth. The Eagles are averaging 9.3 makes while attempting an average of 27.2 per game.  Last year, when EWU set school records with 283 makes and 793 attempts, Eastern averaged 8.8 made treys per game on an average of 24.8 attempts.

* The 54 points the Eagles allowed in a three-point win over Idaho State on Dec. 22 were the fewest they surrendered by 16 – the previous best for the Eagles came in a 75-70 win over South Carolina-Upstate on Nov. 21. Eastern held the Bengals to 37.9 percent shooting from the field, which was EWU’s best defensive effort of the season. The previous best was a 38.1 percent effort versus Cal State Fullerton.

* True freshman forward Venky Jois from Boronia, Australia, has had six double-doubles this season to rank 19th in NCAA Division I (through games of Jan. 3). He had 13 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots in his most recent double-double versus Idaho State in a 57-54 Eagle win on Dec. 22. That came two days after he scored 21 points with five rebounds in EWU’s league opener versus Weber State. He had his best game as an Eagle with 22 points and 13 rebounds on 10-of-14 shooting against Cal State Fullerton in EWU’s 79-75 win on Nov. 30 to earn Big Sky Conference Player of the Week honors. For the season Jois is averaging 34.7 minutes, 13.8 points, 9.2 rebounds, 1.6 blocked shots, 1.1 steals and 1.9 assists per game. He leads the league in rebounding and ranks 39th in NCAA Division I (through Jan. 3). Earlier in the season, he was selected to the All-Tournament Team for his performances in the 2012 College Basketball Experience (CBE) Hall of Fame Classic in Santa Clara, Calif. He had a pair of double-doubles with 19 points and 11 rebounds in EWU’s 75-70 win over South Carolina Upstate and 16 points and 11 boards one game earlier in an 86-83 loss to Utah Valley. Jois came to Eastern after winning a pair of MVP awards in Australia. He was the Bob Staunton 2012 U-20 National Championship MVP, after leading the Victoria State Team to the championship and an unbeaten record. Saint Mary’s College and NBA standout Patty Mills won the Bob Staunton MVP Award in 2006 and 2007. In addition, Jois was the South East Australian Basketball League (SEABL) Youth Player of the Year in 2011, an award given to the top under-23 player and previously won by college and NBA standouts Patty Mills and Andrew Bogut.

* Eastern’s game with Idaho on Dec. 6 was the 100th in the Eastern career of senior guard Jeffrey Forbes and fellow senior Kevin Winford played in his 100th on Dec. 22 versus Idaho State. Forbes, who has now scored 912 points in his 105-game Eastern career, could break Marc Axton’s (2002-05) school record of 119 games played. Forbes has averaged 30.8 minutes per game in his Eastern career with 94 starts. He ranks ninth in school history wit­­­h 109 career steals, and is also fourth in 3-pointers made (155) and attempted (415). Winford has started 36 of the 101 games he has played, averaging 18.2 minutes per game. He has made 119-of-358 3-pointers in his career to rank fifth in school history in both categories, with a total of 601 points scored.

* Senior Collin Chiverton played versus Montana on Jan. 3 for his first appearance since Nov. 23. Last year’s Big Sky Conference Newcomer of the Year, Chiverton missed six games following the death of a close friend in San Francisco. Previously, his mother passed away just as the season began.  “He has gone through the most difficult two months of his life,” said Eastern head coach Jim Hayford in early December. “I respect how he has addressed all the issues with great help from many people. He has been able to take care of his important coursework during this time away. I believe 2013 will be a great year for Collin.” Chiverton has scored 65 points in the last four games he has played after scoring just 15 in EWU’s first three outings. Included are a pair of 19-point performances to hike his average to 11.6 for the season. Foul trouble hindered him early in the season, and he scored 19 points in just 18 minutes before fouling out with 6:20 to play against South Carolina Upstate in EWU’s 75-70 win. One game later, he made 7-of-15 attempts from the field, including 4-of-12 3-point attempts, versus Santa Clara for his second-straight 19-point game. His performances were his best since scoring 20 versus UC Irvine on Feb. 18 last season.  A year ago, he had 12 20-point performances, but was slowed late in the year with injuries.

* Eastern is third in the Big Sky Conference in blocked shots with 60 already for an average of 4.6 per game to rank 67th in NCAA Division I. Individual Eagles are ranked No. 2 and No. 3, with Martin Seiferth averaging 2.0 per game to rank 56th in NCAA Division I and Venky Jois averaging 1.6. The Eagles had a school-record 130 in the 2005-06 season (4.3 average per game).

* The Eagles are second in the Big Sky in offensive rebounds with an average of 12.2 per game (Montana State leads at 12.4 per game). Venky Jois is averaging 2.4 and Martin Seiferth has a 2.3 average to rank third and fourth, respectively, in the league. A year ago, Eastern averaged 12.0 offensive boards per game to lead the league.

* Three Eagles rank in the top nine in school history in career 3-pointers made. Jeffrey Forbes is fourth (155), Kevin Winford is fifth (119) and Collin Chiverton is ninth (105). In attempts, Forbes is fourth (415) and Winford (358) is fifth, and Chiverton is seventh in career 3-point field goal percentage (40.9).

* Eastern is 3-0 when it holds opponents to 43.5 percent or less, and 0-10 when it doesn’t. Also, EWU is 1-9 when it shoots less than 45 percent from the field, but is 2-1 when it has a higher percentage than that. The Eagles made only 38.0 percent versus Idaho State on Dec. 22, but had a season-best defensive effort of 37.9 percent against the Bengals.  Prior to that, Eastern’s lone wins were against USC Upstate (48 percent) and Cal State Fullerton (46 percent). Eight times this season the Eagles have made 38 percent or less. Eastern, which has made only 39.2 percent for the season, had a season-worst 33 percent effort at UC Davis on Dec. 17. The Eagles made 17-of-41 3-point attempts (42 percent), but just 3-of-19 inside the arc (16 percent). In its most recent outing, the Eagles made 46 percent overall – 4-of-16 from the 3-point stripe (25 percent) and 16-of-30 inside the arc (53 percent).

* The Montana loss was Eastern’s first game without former starting point guard Justin Crosgile, who is no longer on the team. No other comments will be made at this time out of respect of the situation. Crosgile, who is from Patterson, N.J., and is a transfer from St. Joseph’s (Pa.), started EWU’s first 12 games and averaged 14.7 points, 5.5 assists, 5.9 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game.

* The Eagles have been picked to finish as high as third in the 2012-13 Big Sky Conference preseason men’s basketball polls released Oct. 18. The media have picked the Eagles to finish third, and the coaches selected Eastern sixth. Defending Big Sky champion Montana has been selected first in both polls.


More EWU Notes

* The Eagles had a season high 17 3-pointers made versus UC Davis on Dec. 17, and have attempted at least 39 3-point attempts on three occasions. Eastern had 41 versus UC Davis and a season-high 42 against Utah Valley on Nov. 20.  Eastern’s 17 3-pointers were one behind the school record of 18 set on Dec. 4, 2010, against New Hope. Eastern had a record 48 3-point attempts on Jan. 19, 1995, versus Sacramento State.

* Sophomore Parker Kelly out of Gonzaga Prep in Spokane equaled his career high with 17 points to pace the Eagles in their Dec. 17 loss at UC Davis. He made 5-of-8 3-point shots against the Aggies, and is now averaging 10.0 points per game in his last seven games after scoring just 10 in the first five games he played. For the season, he is now averaging 6.7 points and 1.0 assists per game, while making 16-of-47 3-point shots for 34.0 percent.

* Martin Seiferth (Oregon) had to sit out last season because of NCAA transfer rules. Thus far, Seiferth is averaging 7.2 points, 5.1 rebounds and 2.0 blocked shots per game. Earlier this season he was the Big Sky Conference Player of the Week after finishing with 27 points, 17 rebounds and a school-record eight blocked shots in a 96-79 loss at Cal State Northridge.

* The Eagles went 1-5 on a season-opening six-game road stretch, including four games in six nights in California. With eight newcomers blending together with six letter winners (not including redshirts), the Eagles had a lot of highs and lows on the trip. Eastern’s lone win was a 75-70 victory over South Carolina Upstate, a team that won 20 games a year ago and played in the Postseason Tournament (CIT). The Eagles lost to another 20-game winner and CIT participant, Utah Valley, by just three points (86-83). Eastern led 43-32 at halftime against Utah Valley, and even had a 31-26 lead late in the first half of an 85-66 loss on Nov. 18 to Saint Mary’s – a NCAA Tournament participant a year ago. In EWU’s third game in four nights in California, Eastern fell 89-74 to an unbeaten Santa Clara squad.

* Three Eagles who played for the highly-successful City College of San Francisco basketball team returned to the Bay Area for a quartet of games in November. Collin Chiverton is from San Jose, and Ivan Dorsey and Garrett Moon are both from San Francisco. That trio helped lead CCSF to the 2010-11 California Community Colleges Athletic Association title and finish 32-1. San Francisco finished the season with a 27-game winning streak, and was a perfect 12-0 to win the Coast-North title. The year after, Dorsey and Moon (who is redshirting this season) led the Rams to a 27-3 record, meaning those two players were on the winning end of 54 of 59 games in junior college. Chiverton also returned to his former college on the trip -- he redshirted the 2008-09 season while at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga, Calif. In last year’s 77-61 loss to the Gaels, Chiverton scored 18 points for EWU. He had seven points in just 15 minutes before fouling out in this year’s meeting.

* The EWU men’s basketball team is playing its home games for the 38th season at Reese Court in Cheney, Wash. But last spring new premium seating was added on the scorer’s table/team benches side, and the wooden bleachers were moved to the ends of the court. In addition, a new video board has been added to the existing scoreboard at Reese Court this fall, and made its debut on Nov. 30.

* With the addition of North Dakota and Southern Utah into the Big Sky Conference, Eastern’s league slate will include 20 games for the first time. The Big Sky Conference Tournament will take place March 14-16 at the site of the regular season champion. After being a six-team affair for most of its history, it will now include seven teams, with the regular season champion receiving a first-round bye. The tournament will include a quarterfinal round with six of the teams playing, followed by semifinals and the championship game.

* In all, Eastern’s 2012-13 schedule includes 10 games versus eight schools who participated in national postseason tournaments a year ago. Eastern will play six games against those opponents on the road, and four games at home. Two appeared in the NCAA Tournament – Saint Mary’s (Nov. 18 on the road) and Montana (Jan. 3 on the road and Feb. 2 at home). Washington State (Nov. 10 on the road) played in the College Basketball Invitational Tournament, and lost to Pittsburgh 89-69 in the championship game. The other five postseason opponents on EWU’s schedule were all in the Postseason Tournament (CIT). Weber State (Dec. 20 at home and March 9 on the road), Idaho (Dec. 6 at home) and South Carolina Upstate (Nov. 21 on the road) advanced to the second round. Utah Valley (Nov. 20 on the road) and Cal State Fullerton (Nov. 30 at home) played in the first round.

* The preseason for the Eagles consisted of a 96-70 victory over Concordia, as well as a closed-door scrimmage two weeks earlier. Eastern also went on a six-game, seven-day trek across British Columbia in September. NCAA Division I schools are allowed to make one preseason foreign trip every four years, including up to 10 practices and six games. Of the 15 players on his roster, 14 of them played during the tour. In winning six games in six nights, the Eagles had a different leading scorer each night. On the floor, the trip helped Hayford blend together returning letterwinners, redshirts, four-year transfers, a junior college transfer and lots of incoming high school players. It also helped develop camaraderie and a team-first attitude among a melting pot of a roster consisting of Germans, Australians and Americans from five different states.

* Eastern finished 15-17 overall and was 8-8 in Big Sky Conference play to finish fourth in the 2011-12 season, and the Eagles hosted and won their first Big Sky Conference Tournament game since 2006. Eastern improved by five victories from the year before, as the Eagles equaled their most wins since Eastern made its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance in 2004.

* Eastern’s games versus Washington State, Utah Valley, South Carolina Upstate and Santa Clara are all part of the 2012 College Basketball Experience (CBE) Hall of Fame Classic. The WSU game took place in Pullman, Wash., and the other three will be played in Santa Clara, Calif., as part of the CBE Classic, which is hosted by the National Association of Basketball Coaches.


EWU vs. Montana State Series Notes

* Since Eastern became a member of NCAA Division I in the 1983-84 season, the Eagles are 24-34 against Montana State (includes two MSU forfeits in the 1993-94 season). Since 1983-84, Eastern is 7-22 in Bozeman and 17-12 in Cheney against the Bobcats. EWU trails in the all-time series 31-42 (19-12 in Cheney, 9-27 in Bozeman, 3-3 neutral). A year ago, Eastern swept Montana State. The Eagles recorded a huge 82-66 road victory over the Bobcats in the first Big Sky Conference game in the head coaching career of Jim Hayford, then later in the year won in Cheney 69-52.

* Eastern has won 14 of the last 26 after winning just once in the previous 13 games (not counting two MSU forfeits). However, Eastern is just 6-9 against the Bobcats in the last 15 meetings, including losses in Bozeman in six of the last eight meetings. Until a 75-73 triumph on Jan. 10, 2010, in Bozeman, the Eagles hadn’t won in Bozeman since Feb. 5, 2004, in a 64-61 triumph. Later in the season on Feb. 12, 2010, Eastern won at home against the Bobcats 74-69 to complete EWU’s first sweep over MSU since 2004.


Records Watch

* Sophomore center Martin Seiferth broke a school record that stood for 25 years with seven blocked shots in a 96-79 loss to Cal State Northridge on Nov. 12. Seiferth, who also had 27 points and 17 rebounds in the game, broke the previous record of six set by Dexter Griffen versus Idaho State on Jan. 2, 1987. Seiferth’s 17 rebounds are the sixth-best recorded performance all-time at Eastern. The sophomore from Berlin, Germany, just missed a spot on Eastern’s all-time leading scorers list, with 30 points scored by 10 different players to rank 39th.

* Senior guard Jeffrey Forbes has played in105 games to rank 11th in school history, and could break Marc Axton’s (2002-05) school record of 119 games played. A 93-game starter, Forbes has averaged 30.8 minutes per game in his Eastern career. He ranks ninth in school history wit­­­h 109 career steals, just two from reaching No. 8. He is also fourth in 3-pointers made (155) and attempted (415). He is 29 makes and 84 attempts away from school records. In his career at the free throw line, Forbes has made what would be a school record at 88.2 percent (149-of-169), but he is 41 attempts shy to meet the minimum of two free throw attempts per game. Forbes set a single season school record for free throw percentage (.900, 54-of-60) as a sophomore. He also made 55 3-pointers in the 2010-11 season to rank as the 11th-most in Eastern history (now 13th entering the 2012-13 season).

* Senior guard Kevin Winford has played in 101 career games, and is just five from a spot on Eastern’s top 10 all-time list. He ranks in the top 10 on several Eastern season and career lists for 3-point shooting. On career charts, his 119 makes and his 358 attempts both rank fifth. Winford made 66 3-pointers in the 2010-11 season to rank fifth (now sixth) in single season school history, and his 187 attempts were fourth (now fifth). He owns school records for single game 3-pointers made (10) and attempted (23) when he finished with 39 points – fifth-best in school history – in his sophomore season against New Hope (12/4/10).

* Senior forward Collin Chiverton and his 104 3-pointers rank ninth on EWU’s top 10 career list, and his 257 attempts are 16 away. In the five seasons he has played since his junior year in high school, teams that Chiverton has played on have won 132 of 176 games for a .750 winning percentage. His junior college and high school teams won 114 of 131 games (87 percent).


Recent Game Summaries

* Eastern was out-shot 9-4 at the 3-point line and fell at Montana 81-66 on Jan. 3 in a Big Sky Conference men’s game at Dahlberg Arena in Missoula, Mont.  The Grizzlies made 9-of-21 from the 3-point stripe (43 percent) after entering the game ranked 11th in NCAA Division I in 3-point percentage (40.7 percent) and 55th with an average of 7.7 treys per game. Eastern led D-I with an average of 9.8 per game, but made only 4-of-16 versus the Grizzlies. A 10-2 run – including a pair of 3-pointers -- helped the Grizzlies pull away from a 37-all tie in the second half.  True freshman Venky Jois led the Eagles with 16 points and also had seven rebounds, a pair of assists and a blocked shot. Fellow true freshman Thomas Reuter had 14 points, making 5-of-6 shots from the field and adding eight rebounds. Senior Collin Chiverton had 14 points in his first action since Nov. 23.

* A late 8-0 run and a huge blocked shot by Thomas Reuter with nine seconds left lifted Eastern to a 57-54 victory over Idaho State Dec. 22 at Reese Court in a Big Sky game.  Freshman forward Venky Jois had his sixth double-double of the season – all coming in the last nine games – with 13 points and 12 rebounds. He also had three blocked shots, as well as 6-foot-10 sophomore Martin Seiferth, who finished with nine points and four rebounds. Senior Jeffrey Forbes hit a trio of 3-pointers – giving him 155 in his career – to finish with nine points. Freshman point guard Daniel Hill chipped in eight points in just his third game as an Eagle. In the final 11 seconds, with EWU nursing a one-point lead, ISU had a steal and was headed for a fast-break layin. But Reuter blocked the layin attempt, retrieved the ball, was fouled and then made a pair of free throws with seven seconds left that provided the final margin.

* Weber State showed why it has been picked to finish second in the Big Sky Conference this season, defeating Eastern 74-53 Dec. 20 in the Big opener for both schools. The Wildcats opened an 11-0 lead and led from start to finish, and out-shot the Eagles 48 percent to 34 percent. Freshman Venky Jois led the Eagles with 21 points – one away from his career high. Jois made 7-of-12 shots from the field and 7-of-10 free throws, and also had five rebounds and four blocked shots. Sophomore Parker Kelly chipped in eight points on 3-of-5 shooting. The Eagles had just eight turnovers in the game.

* Read more at:


Quoting Coach Jim Hayford

On Montana Loss: “For the first 25 minutes of the game we looked like a real solid, cohesive unit playing with a purpose. That is something we can really, really build on. Then we had a spurt where we kept fouling and we went cold. That was the difference right there.”

More on Loss to Montana: “Everybody is learning how to play with each other. Venky (Jois) and Thomas (Reuter) both had great nights – Thomas was really, really solid. Daniel (Hill) made a few mistakes that come with only playing four games. We have to shoot a little better, especially if teams are going to zone us. We challenged (our players) to use the last six or seven minutes to get better as a team, and I thought we did that. There are some positives to build from. Montana is a really good team. We are going to come into this building and win games in the future.”

On Point Guard Daniel Hill: “Daniel is going to have a great career. He’s a solid point guard who makes everybody better. Along with senior Kevin Winford, I’m very confident in those players.”

On Toughness After ISU Win & WSU Loss:  “We need to keep building toughness. The way you get toughness is you face adversity, and you find success against it. When you face adversity -- and fail against it -- you go up the next time and you look for success. That’s what we are committed to do as a coaching staff.”

On Aggressive Play: “I’m scrappy so I’m going to try to make them scrappy every day. That’s the only way I know how to play basketball. It’s just a truth. The team that plays harder wins. That’s the great equalizer -- there’s talent and whatever, but I hope we just get scrappier.”

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