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Weber State can make history tonight

PORTLAND — Weber State hopes to make history tonight.

The Wildcats can become the first team in 34 years to go undefeated in the Big Sky. After making an incredible 12-point, second-half comeback against Eastern Washington on Thursday night, the Wildcats face Portland State, who's in last place in the Big Sky.

Weber State coach Joe Cravens is a little worried that his team will have a letdown after the win over the Eagles. But he's happy that his team still has a reason to play — to join the 1968-69 Weber State team as the only teams to go unbeaten in the Big Sky.

"Obviously, we can't experience a letdown," Cravens said. "We can't let this one get away from us."

Tonight's game means absolutely nothing in the standings. The Wildcats have already won the conference championship. Portland State could move out of last place in the Big Sky but can't qualify for the conference tournament.

That could make the Vikings even more dangerous since they have nothing to play for. There's no pressure on Portland State to win this game, and the Vikings gave the Wildcats a scare the first time they played each other.

"They played us really tough," Weber State's Nic Sparrow said. "The standings don't show how tough of a team they are. We really have to come to play."

The first meeting between the two teams followed the same pattern as many of Weber State's games. The Wildcats let the Vikings hang around for about 30 minutes before going on a 19-3 run and winning 77-64.

Tonight's game will be played in the Stott Center, a building that was renovated as part of a $1 million project. The facility holds just 1,500, but the Wildcats have lost their last two games there.

"It's a tough place to play," Cravens said.

The Vikings' record of 3-10 in the Big Sky and 5-21 overall may be pretty ugly, but it makes other teams work to beat them. The Vikings have the third-best scoring defense in the Big Sky and one of the streakiest 3-point shooters in the league in Jeb Ivey.

"Defensively they are as good as anyone in the league," Cravens said. "Jeb Ivey has basically owned us the last two seasons. He single-handedly beat us up in Portland last year and nearly beat us twice at our place."

WEBER NOTES: According to cbs.sportsline.com, Weber State's RPI is 45 . . . The Wildcats' 14-game winning streak is the second longest in the nation, behind Kentucky's 17 straight wins . . . Weber State (Big Sky), Kentucky (SEC) and Pennsylvania (Ivy League) are the only teams in the nation unbeaten in their respective conferences.


WSU Wildcats (23-5, 13-0)

Probable starters

Name Ht. Yr. PPG

F Nic Sparrow 6-4 Jr. 10.2

F S. Ocokoljic 6-8 Jr. 15.3

F S. Bachmann 6-10 Sr. 7.6

G J. Boyette 6-2 Sr. 20.1

G John Hamilton 6-3 Jr. 11.6

PSU Vikings (5-21, 3-10)

Probable starters

Name Ht. Yr. PPG

F Seth Scott 6-10 Jr. 12.3

C B. Haughton 6-7 Jr. 4.7

G Jeb Ivey 6-2 Sr. 14.8

G Kevin Briggs 6-2 Sr. 12.1

G John Glaser 5-11 Jr. 1.1

Saturday, 8:05 p.m. (MST)

Stott Center (1,500)

TV: None

Radio: 1430 AM


E-mail: aaragon@desnews.com