Exhibition Preview - Seattle Pacific
Leep returns to UW (Seattle Pacific University)
Leep returns to UW (Seattle Pacific University)
Posted Nov 4, 2011
Chris Wells

SEATTLE - While it’s an exhibition game, Seattle Pacific University will be no pushover for the University of Washington men’s basketball team on Friday at 7 p.m. at Alaska Airlines Arena. The game will be televised on ROOT Sports. Featuring two Division-1 transfers and some decent size, SPU recorded a historic upset at No. 16 Arizona in their first exhibition of the pre-season.

In the 69-68 monumental victory over the Wildcats, junior transfer Jobi Wall shocked UA with 24 points and was a constant threat from beyond the arc with four 3-pointers. The 6-foot-6 wing came to SPU by way of Colorado Christian. It was his first game in a Falcon uniform.

While Wall had the best game, the most prominent player on the Falcons roster is Andy Poling, a junior transfer center from Gonzaga University. The 6-foot-11 Portland native finished with 14 points and five rebounds against the 'Cats. Poling is an Honorable Mention pre-season Division-2 All-American. Last season, Poling averaged 14.5 points and seven rebounds a game.

Playing alongside Poling in the front court is Modou Niang, a senior transfer from Utah State. While he hasn’t been very productive, the 6-foot-11, 240 pound native of Senegal adds yet another intimidating presence for the Huskies' front court.

At the point is the GNAC returning Freshman of the Year, David Downs. A 6-foot-2 sophomore from Bellevue Christian, Downs averaged 4.3 assists a game last season, but provided seven assists in the game against Arizona. He also added 14 points, but was turnover prone with four miscues.

While the Falcons played solid, it was more a game loss by the Wildcats. As a team, the Falcons didn't force the action much, but the Wildcats still committed 12 turnovers. The Wildcats were also out-rebounded 29-20.

On offense, SPU had a good game, shooting .531 from the field and .923 from the free-throw line. The Falcons played nearly flawless in that regard.

As for this matchup between the Huskies and Falcons, the last game between the two was in 2007, when UW escaped with an 86-77 victory at Hec Edmundson Pavilion. The exhibition has been made a little more interesting by the exclusion of UW center Aziz N'diaye, who won't play due to a concussion. They've already lost senior guard Scott Suggs to a foot injury for at least the next month, but heralded freshman guard Tony Wroten, Jr. is expected to play his first minutes as a Husky on Friday.

SPU also features a staff member with some Husky ties, assistant coach Grant Leep. A four-year letterman for Washington, Leep played from 1999-2002 with the Huskies and was the team captain his senior year. Leep holds UW’s all-time 3-point shooting percentage mark.

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