Game Preview: UW vs. Central Washington (Preseason game #1)

UW CWU preview copy
The Huskies will take on the Division II Central Washington Wildcats Wednesday night at Bank of America Arena at 7:00 PM. This will be the only preseason game for the Huskies who begin their regular season Friday, November 13th, at home against Wright State. /

The game will not be broadcast on television or radio. Tickets are still available through for only $10.

What you need to know about the Huskies:

This is your first chance to see our 2009/10 team function as a unit, and marks the competitive debuts of Abdul Gaddy, Clarence Trent, C.J. Wilcox, Tyreese Breshers and walk-on Brendan Sherrer in Husky uniforms.

Justin Holiday is expected to be back around the time of the regular season opener, but will likely be out for this game.

Projected lineup: G – Venoy Overton, G – Isaiah Thomas, F – Quincy Pondexter, F – Darnell Gant, F – Matthew Bryan-Amaning

What you need to know about Central Washingtion:

Central plays in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference, and is located in Ellensburg, Washington. Last season, the Wildcats finished the season with an 18-7 record, but lost in the first round of the NCAA Division II Tournament. Here’s a press release from the school announcing that they’ve been picked to finish third in their conference this year.

Coach Greg Sparling begins his fifteenth season with a reloaded roster after losing four of his five starters and his top five scorers.

Junior point guard Jon Clift is the lone returning starter (although wasn’t listed in the projected lineup Coach Sparling shared with us), and sophomore forward Chris Sprinker (7.6 ppg) is the leading scorer to return.

Projected lineup (from Coach Sparling to Montlake Madness): “We are banged up. If we get healthy…”: G – JC Cook, G – Toussaint Tyler, G – Humberto Perez, F – Roby Clyde, F – Chris Sprinker

A quick word from the opposition:

Central’s coach, Greg Sparling, took a moment to answer a few questions from Montlake Madness.

"Montlake Madness: What style of basketball can we expect from Central on Wednesday night?Coach Sparling: We will play hard and together, (and) can shoot the ball well as a team.MM: What’s your plan to try to keep the game competitive with UW?CS: UW is a very good team and is nationally ranked. We need to stop UW’s transition. We must defend them off the bounce. And rebound.MM: Please give me your brief scouting report on the Huskies.CS: Great in transition and very athletic. They will pressure you on the defensive end. Good rebounding team. Very good in the open court."

The path to victory:

The Huskies shouldn’t have to do anything special, or even play especially well, to win the game. A “win” tonight would be defined as a low-turnover/high-effort performance with a strong showing on the glass.

Also, seeing Tyreese Breshers able to play effectively, despite not being 100% healthy, would be a big win for the Husky faithful.

What I expect:

While UW’s non-conference schedule isn’t exactly filled to the brim with world-beaters, Central begins their season against Portland Bible College and finishes up their non-conference slate with Academy of Art University. We’re simply a bigger program, and should have no problem winning handily against the Wildcats.

This is a great opportunity for UW to work out some of the kinks that we heard whispers about after the St. Mary’s scrimmage, and run through their offense a few times against some live competition.

UW really has no excuse to do anything but dominate this one, and I’m picking an 84-56 victory.