The Southern Utah University men’s basketball team faced Westminster University, a Division II college out of Salt Lake City, on Monday, Oct. 23. The Thunderbirds took the lead quickly and never looked back, securing the 98-66 victory.
SUU started the game with an aggressive go at the basket. Getting a few early and-ones led to SUU spreading the floor to finish off the half. Southern Utah got hot from beyond the arch in the first half.
One of many players to hit a three, Braden Housley, took over in this game. Knocking down five of eight shots from three-point range and seven of eleven overall, Housley showed himself as a player fans can be ecstatic about going into this season. Housley is one of few players returning to the team this season, as a new coaching staff brought in new players in the off-season.
Seniors Parsa Fallah and Zion Young are also returning players. Young had an explosive game, finishing with 10 points, including a posterizing dunk. Fallah had a good game as well, setting hard screens and finishing with seven points on the night. Fallah, being the tallest man on the roster at 6’9”, has SUU looking a lot different than in the past.
The Thunderbirds are looking smaller this season after losing 6’11” center Jason Spurgin to the transfer portal. However, this is not something that hindered them from getting the job done. With the lack of height, SUU makes up for it with intense effort and a lot of athleticism, especially from their wings, as shown by Dominique Ford. He was getting it done for SUU, primarily in the paint. Ford contributed three and-ones for SUU and finished with 11 points.
The Thunderbirds’ athleticism also led to a great defensive performance. Five players on the team finished with at least one block, and SUU outrebounded the Griffins 38-26.
SUU has a very different team this season. There will be a lot to look forward to with new wings and guard play. SUU has a tough schedule coming up this season and will look to build off each other to push toward making it to the postseason tournament. Fans are waiting to see how new head coach Rob Jeter looks to tackle the upcoming season with his team.
Author: Conner Hall
Photographer: Anden Garfield
Editor: Anden Garfield