The men’s basketball team closed out a five-game homestand on Jan. 24 as they hosted the Bruins of Salt Lake Community College (SLCC).
SLCC came into the game ranked number four with an overall record of 18-4. Snow entered with a record of 16-6 as they were seeking to gain ground in the Scenic West Athletic Conference (SWAC).
The game started out slowly for the Badgers as they quickly found themselves in a large deficit against the Bruins. The SLCC defense had the advantage over Snow in the first half as they held the Badgers to a mere 22 points and ended the period with a 10 point advantage.
Snow began the second half with a comeback and brought more competition to SLCC. The Badgers rallied and eventually gained the lead from the Bruins. The game remained tight until the last couple minutes when SLCC pulled away and sealed the victory over Snow. The game ended 69-64 in favor of SLCC as they were able to gain a crucial conference win as they hope to close in on the College of Southern Idaho for advantage in the SWAC.
Walter Wright again was the standout player for the Badgers as he led the team with 23 points. Despite his effort, the Badger offense still looked pedestrian on the court and on the stat sheet. One of the most telling statistics of the game was the three-point percentage. Snow went 4-21 from beyond the arc resulting in a 19% three-point percentage, compared to SLCC’s 35.7%.
The Badgers dominated the paint with a 38-26 advantage over SLCC. This game might be a catalyst for reconsidering offensive strategy, moving away from the long range shot. Big men Aziz Leeks and Larenz Stalcup both had a significant presence, but the disappointing three-point shooting might result in the centers playing even bigger roles as the guards combined for a three-point shooting line of 3-18. The Badgers have shown they do well under the basket, if more opportunities can be created for the centers, especially Marcus Bryce who only had two shot attempts, Snow might be able to come away with more successful possessions.
The Rowdy Crowd came out in strong support for the Badgers. Antonio Jimenez won the Rowdy Badger Award and expressed his opinion on the game, “We may have lost the game but we didn’t go down without a fight. It’s not about the size of the badger in the fight; it’s about the size of the fight in the badger.”
Snow will be on the road until they host North Idaho College on Feb. 19.