Friday, Nov. 4 marked the first game for the Portland State Vikings college basketball season. Both women’s and men’s basketball teams opened their games with a bang at the Stott Center. Although both Viking teams won, their paths to victory were quite different.
The Lady Viks opened up their season against the Western Oregon Wolves. The Wolves entered the court as the clear underdog, but showed the Lady Viks they meant business.
The Lady Viks started the clock with more momentum than the Wolves. Strong defensive plays by the Lady Viks created limitations and issues for the Lady Wolves. PSU closed out the first half leading 47–34.
Down but not out, Western Oregon would come out of the second half with high offensive firepower. Junior guard Shelby Snook made seven consecutive shots in a stretch of the third and fourth quarter. The Lady Wolves closed the margin and took the lead, heading into the fourth quarter with the score of 67–65.
The fourth quarter was nothing but a battle. Both teams played back and forth while exchanging leads. Strong plays by Lady Viks guards Ashley Bolston and Sidney Rielly would show nothing but domination. Both were difficult to stop as they proved to be an aggressive scoring team down the stretch. The game would go into overtime with both teams tied at 84 points.
Overtime picked up right where the fourth quarter left off. Both teams were neck and neck, fighting their way until the end. The Lady Viks would find a way to run with slightly more momentum within the last minute on the clock. The Lady Viks would go on to win 96–100.
After a suspenseful women’s basketball game, it was time for the men’s Viking basketball team to show the home crowd what they were capable of doing. Both teams had a tough act to follow.
Unlike the women’s game, the men’s game was more of a blow out. Most of the first half was tight as the Viks and the Wildcats ran back and forth down the court. The Viks held a lead with the first half winding down, but Linfield wasn’t far behind. The Viks led at halftime 41–31.
Vikings came out ruthless in the second half as they hit the pedal to the medal. Strong plays by Braxton Tucker showed assertive shots to the basket, making a true comeback for his first game since recovering from an injury.
The Viks aggressive play on both sides of the ball didn’t give the Wildcats a fighting chance. Portland State cruised to an easy 87–62 victory to tip-off their season.
Impact players from WOU women’s basketball were Shelby Snook with 32 points, 13–20 field goals (5–9 3-PT FG), four rebounds, and three assists. Kaylie Boschma scored 17 points, 6–14 FG (3–5 3-PT FG), nine rebounds and two assists.
For the PSU Lady Viks, Sidney Rielly had 25 points overall, 9–17 FG, three rebounds and six assists. Ashley Bolston scored 24 points, 9–17 FG (2–4 3-PT FG), one rebound and 4 assists.
Linfield men’s basketball player Kyle Maloof recorded a double-double with 17 points, 7–17 FG, and 10 rebounds.
Portland State’s Braxton Tucker led all other scoring teammates with 30 points, 11–15 FG, eight rebounds and 4 assists. Khari Holloway scored high with 14 points, 5–9 FG (3–6 3-PT FG), two rebounds and four assists.
PSU men’s basketball team faces Arizona State at home tonight, 6 p.m. Nov. 11.