GCI Great Alaska Shootout Up Next For Men's Basketball

Princeton Onwas leads the Spartans in scoring at 12.3 points per game, and went for a career-high 21 against Montana State last week.
Nov. 23, 2015

SJSU Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

The San José State men's basketball team will play three games this week as one of the eight teams in the 2015 GCI Great Alaska Shootout. The Spartans' first-round matchup versus Toledo will kickoff the tournament on Wednesday, November 25, at 7:30 p.m. AKT, 8:30 p.m. PST. The game will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network, see channel listings below. The outcome of play will determine San José State's gametime and opponents for the remainder of the tournament, with the championship game set for 8:30 p.m. AKT, 9:30 p.m. PST.

2015 GCI Great Alaska Shootout
November 25-28, 2015
Alaska Airlines Center (5,000)
Anchorage, Alaska
CBS Sports Network Coverage
Comcast Xfinity: 418, 732
AT&T U-Verse: 643, 1643
Dish Network: 158

Shootout Schedule
Wednesday, Nov. 25 - First Round
7:30 p.m. (Gm. 1) - San José State (1-2) vs. Toledo (2-1) -- CBS Sports Network
10:00 p.m. (Gm. 2) - San Diego (0-3) vs. Loyola Chicago (3-1) -- CBS Sports Network
Thursday, Nov. 26 - First Round
5:30 p.m. (Gm. 3) - Middle Tennessee (1-1) vs. Alaska Anchorage (6-3) -- CBS Sports Network
8:00 p.m. (Gm. 4) - Drexel (0-3) vs. UNC Asheville (1-3) -- CBS Sports Network
Friday, Nov. 27 - Consolation Semifinals & Semifinals
12:00 p.m. (Gm. 5) - SJSU/Toledo loser vs. USD/Loyola loser
2:00 p.m. (Gm. 6) - MT/UAA loser vs. USD/Loyola loser
5:30 p.m. (Gm. 7) - SJSU/Toledo winner vs. USD/Loyola winner -- CBS Sports Network
8:00 p.m. (Gm. 8) - MT/UAA winner vs. Drexel/Asheville winner -- CBS Sports Network
Saturday, Nov. 28
12:00 p.m. (Gm. 9) - Game 5 loser vs. Game 6 loser (7th/8th place)
2:00 p.m. (Gm. 10) - Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner (4th/6th place)
5:30 p.m. (Gm. 11) Game 7 loser vs. Game 8 loser (3rd/5th place)
8:30 p.m. (Gm. 12) Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 winner (Champ.) -- CBS Sports Network
Playing in the Great Alaska Shootout for the first time, San José State will represent the Mountain West in the eight-team tournament to be shown live on CBS Sports Network over Thanksgiving weekend. SJSU joins Drexel (Colonial Athletic Association), Loyola of Ill., (Missouri Valley Conference), Middle Tennessee (Conference USA), UNC Asheville (Big South Conference), San Diego (West Coast Conference), Toledo (Mid-American Conference) and the host, Alaska Anchorage (Great Northwest Athletic Conference) in this year's shootout.
First being played in November of 1978, the Great Alaska Shootout is the longest running in-season college basketball tournament. The inaugural edition of the tournament was called the Sea Wolf Classic, and was hosted by the University of Alaska Anchorage at the Buckner Field House. In 1979, the tournament became the Great Alaska Shootout, and has since played host to 26 NCAA Championship winning teams. Before he was an NBA Finals champion, the Golden State Warriors' Klay Thompson was a Great Alaska Shootout champion. He scored a tournament-record 43 points helping Washington State to a Shootout crown in 2009. Last year, Mountain West representative Colorado State came away as the Shootout champions with a 65-63 win over UC Santa Barbara.
Princeton Onwas (6-7, Sr., Houston, Texas) has emerged as the early scoring leader for the Spartans at 12.3 points per game. He's doing it efficiently too, shooting 50 percent (14-28) from the floor. He went for a career-high 21 points in SJSU's last game at Montana. He finished that contest 8 of 14 shooting, also a career best.
Ryan Welage's 9.0 rebounds per contest are good for fourth among all Mountain West Players. The freshman began the season with back-to-back double-doubles, and grabbed seven boards in the most recent outing at Montana State. His 23 defensive rebounds lead the conference.
Despite Welage being a top rebounder, San José State has been up and down as a team thus far on the glass. In the season opener versus Idaho, the team was outrebounded 42-32. The Spartans bounced back with a 46-29 advantage on the boards in the win over Montana, but then was outrebounded by 20 in the Montana State loss. Both games in which the Spartans have been beaten on the boards have ended in defeat. Welage at 9.0 and Frank Rogers (6-9, Sr., Salinas, Calif.) at 6.3 are the Spartans' per-game rebounding leaders.
Ryan Welage (6-9, Fr., F, Greensburg, Ind.) turned in consecutive double-double performances and Frank Rogers added another to give SJSU three so far in as many contests. San José State had just two double-doubles all of last season. Welage is tied with four other MW players with two double-doubles, and Nevada's AJ West leads all with three.
San José State had its lead cut down to one point on multiple occasions in the second half versus Montana, but that lead was never relinquished. The Spartans hit six of their last eight free throws in the contest, and got a huge basket from Frank Rogers at the 1:23 mark. Princeton Onwas sealed the game with his transition dunk with 12 seconds left to make it 64-61. Montana missed a desperation three-point attempt at the buzzer.
The win over Montana was San José State's first against a Division I opponent since a win at Nevada on February 18, 2014. It snapped a losing streak of 21 games dating back to last season, and a 11-game losing streak at The Event Center. Beyond all of that, Montana won 22 games last season and was an NIT team. Prior to facing the Spartans, the Grizzlies defeated Boise State, which was predicted to finish second in the Mountain West by the conference's media poll.
In the final five minutes of the win over Montana, Frank Rogers scored five points, hit three of four free throws and grabbed two huge offensive rebounds. One of his offensive boards led to a put-back which put the Spartans up 62-59 with 1:23 left to play. Rogers was there to answer back twice after Montana cut SJSU's lead down to one in the final five minutes. He finished with a game-high 16 points and 10 rebounds.
The Toledo Rockets come in with a 2-1 record and most recently lost at Loyola of Chicago, 69-62. At 86.0 points per game, Toledo is outscoring its opponents by an average of 15.3 points. Nathan Boothe leads the squad with 23.3 points and 8.7 rebounds per contest. The Mid-American Conference member is coached by Tod Kowalczyk in his sixth season. Last year the Rockets finished 20-13, giving the program its first back-to-back 20-win seasons since 1977-81. The first-round meeting between the Spartans and Rockets will be the first meeting between the programs.