Weber State basketball: Jones sits, Revaz debuts in 107-45 win over Navajo Tech
Freddie Lacey, WSU Athletics
OGDEN — Dillon Jones sat, Blaise Threatt flirted with a triple-double in less than 20 minutes of playing time, and transfer center Arnaud Revaz made his Weber State debut as the Wildcats cruised past non-NCAA opponent Navajo Tech 107-45 in a bridge game Monday at the Dee Events Center.
Steven Verplancken Jr. led Weber State (4-2) with 19 points, matching a career-high with five 3-pointers, and KJ Cunningham totaled 14 points while shooting 4 of 8 from downtown.
Threatt, a junior guard, started in place of Jones and hit the glass early on the way to 10 points, 11 rebounds, seven assists and four steals in 19 minutes and 31 seconds on the court.
“The main thing we got out of this game was being able to see different groups of people together on the floor and … get better with each other, so it’s a good team effort,” Threatt said. “I took it upon myself to really try to get on the glass and be aggressive for the team.”
The only thing that kept WSU from a record night scoring- or margin-wise was committing seven turnovers in the first eight minutes as the Wildcats, who finished with 13 turnovers, played unconventional lineups all night.
Freddie Lacey, WSU Athletics
The game bridged the gap from the 10-day road trip to Saint Mary’s and the Atlantic Slam in Canada to two games next week at Utah Valley and home to Cal Poly.
WSU led just 14-5 through eight minutes but used a 15-0 run to begin pushing the margin which became 51-17 at halftime.
Freshman forward Marko Sarenac totaled 14 points and four rebounds in 13 minutes and freshman shooting guard Viljami Vartiainen added 13 points, three rebounds and three assists. Sophomore forward Louie Jordan knocked down three 3-pointers on his way to nine points, and sophomore center Handje Tamba added five points and nine rebounds.
Revaz, a 6-foot-10 junior transfer from the University of Maryland, made his season debut after missing the leadup to the season, and its first five games, with a wrist injury. He totaled four points, two rebounds and one steal in 12 minutes, adding several deflections that became steals or offensive rebounds for teammates.
“I think before he got hurt he was our best offensive rebounder, he might be our best post scorer,” WSU head coach Eric Duft said. “He’s athletic and Arnaud is going to help us going forward … he’s going to be a valuable part of our team, especially in conference.”
Jones sat to rest after playing through a foot issue on the 10-day road trip.
By way of superlatives, Threatt missed a triple-double in the same way Jones did last season against Portland State — the stats were likely there to get but Threatt checked out of the game with 12 minutes left as WSU led by 49.
The 62-point margin of victory is the ninth-highest in program history, and the Wildcats shot 15 of 34 from the 3-point line, constituting the ninth-most triples in a game.
WSU plays at Utah Valley (4-2, and who plays two more games before hosting Weber) on Tuesday, Dec. 5, then hosts Cal Poly (2-4) on Saturday, Dec. 9.
Threatt said Monday helped begin what the team hoped was a renewed focus on finishing games after letting leads slip away at the Atlantic Slam.
“We put our feet on the gas the whole game and separated ourselves but it’s (different) to do it against Division I teams,” Threatt said. “So we have to make sure we, in harder games coming up … we really have to emphasize … closing the game out.”