Our top male athlete of the week is 6’7 Quinnipiac Junior forward Ike Azotam who scored 17 points on his way to becoming the 26th player in Quinnipiac’s basketball history to record 1000 points in their career. The feat came on a jam by Azotam early in the first half as they took a 22-10 lead and never looked back, going on to win 71-55 against St. Francis. The win improves the program to 12-13 overall, and 8-5 in the NEC, they have now won four straight and six out of their last seven with Azotam averaging 13.8 points and 8.5 rebounds per game.
Victor Oladipo showed why he is the front runner for the most improved player in the nation award after notching a career high 26 points in the all important 81-68 win at Ohio State last Sunday night. Oladipo who has seen his draft status rise in the last month has often been criticized on offensive capabilities. However, in the game against Ohio State, he showed that he has the potential to be more productive in more ways that one, hitting a variety of jump shots, and showing the ability to create his own offence. His defense is still the attribute that sets him apart from the rest, but with the way he played against Ohio State especially being away from home, it is easy to see why he is highly rated by Tom Crean and the rest of the Indiana Coaching Staff. Oladipo also added 8 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals for the number 1 ranked Indiana.
Despite a heart-breaking double overtime loss to Texas during mid-week action, Nigerian International Melvin Ejim put up big numbers for Iowa State as he posted his 10th double double of the season to finish with 20 points and 16 rebounds in the heart-breaking loss. This was the Cyclones fifth-straight road loss, and they will need to start improving on their away record to give them a better chance of getting into the NCAA big dance. TNB would also like to congratulate Ejim for his recognition as a member of the Academic All-Big 12 team on Thursday.
Despite UT-Arlington’s slow start to the season, 6’1 Power Forward Desherra Nwanguma has been one of the few bright spots for the Women’s basketball program, putting up a series of impressive numbers in recent weeks. In Wednesday night match-up against Idaho, Nwanguma was sensational going 12/17 from the field to finish with a career high 27 points along with 7 rebounds as UTA won their first home game of the season. UTA had led for much of the tie, but a late rally by Idaho brought them back into the game, and with time winding down, they had a chance to steal the win but could not connect from long range as time expired. Earlier in the week, UTA had gone through a coaching change in a bid to get the program back on track. Nwanguma is currently averaging 7.9 points and 4.5 rebounds per game.
Chiney Ogwumike is proving to be an unstoppable force in Pac-12 action this season. In her best effort of the last week, Ogwumike put up 26 points and 15 rebounds in the win against USC on Friday night earning her a record setting 20th double double of the season. Interestingly, Chiney’s double-double broke Stanford’s single-season record that she and her older sister Nneka set last season, she is also on course to break the overall career team record for double doubles which Nneka set with 51, Chiney has 50 till date. Stanford are currently tie at the top of the Pac-12 standings with a 12-1 conference record.
A career matching 25 points performance from Elizabeth Williams cruised Duke to an easy 77-33 win over Virginia Tech on Thursday night. Williams started the game playing with a lot of poise and energy on both ends of the court as she was doubled team early by the under-sized Virginia Tech team. In a game that was never in any real doubt, Williams went 9/14 from the field in addition to 7/8 from the free throw line, she added 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocks in the contest.
- Jamal Olasewere is averaging 21.5 points and 8.2 rebounds in the last four games which LIU has be unbeaten.
- Junior Amos Olatayo chipped in 22 points and seven rebounds, marking the seventh time he has surpassed 20 points this season as ULM defeated North Texas 85-73 in midweek action
- Atonye Nyingifa scored 20 points and grabbed 5 rebounds for UCLA as they defeated California 79-51 on Friday night.
- Sophomore Nneka Enemkpali, recorded 18 points on 8 of 14 shooting, while collecting a game-high 13 rebounds for Texas during the midweek game against Kansas State
“I wasn’t trying to think about it too much, but my teammates kept talking about it,” Azotam said after the game. “It’s a good feeling. It just shows the hard work and dedication I put in, and how great my teammates and this program are.” – Ike Azotam on reaching 1000 points for his career.
“The one thing was that we came together as a team and talked, decided to work hard, play for ourselves and keep going,” Nwanguma said. “You can’t let something like that bring you down, so it gave us more motivation to win tonight.” – Desherra Nwanguma on her first home win of the season.