1. Joe Efese (Central Connecticut State)
The best performance of the week goes to Central Connecticut State’s Senior Joe Efese. The 6’6 power forward put up an impressive stat-line away to Scared Heart as he came off the bench to score a career high 21 points, together with 6 rebounds and 8 blocked shots. The win broke a four game losing streak, to improve their record to 11-15 overall and 7-8 in Northeast Conference action. Efese who is from New-York but born to Nigerian parents is averaging 6.7 points and 3.7 rebounds per game this season, he is a strong physical forward with an improving mid-range game, and also provides valuable defensive cover.
Victor Oladipo scored his 1000th point of his career for the Indiana basketball program in the top 5 match-up away to Michigan State last Tuesday night, the point came on a tip- in to put Indiana up 98-97 as Oladipo scored the last 6 points points down the stretch to win the game and maintain Indiana’s no.1 status in the country. Oladipo had started the first half on a blistering account, scoring 9 points along with 4 steals, he cooled down a bit at the start of the 2nd half, but as Michigan State mounted a come back, Oladipo made a couple of key plays at the end of the half to finish the game with 19 points, 9 rebounds and 5 steals. It was the first time Indiana had won in Michigan State since 1991, and Oladipo remains front runner for player of the year recognition.
Iowa State’s forward Melvin Ejim had a very impressive week of College basketball during an action pack Big 12 play. In Tuesday’s night win against Baylor, Ejim was very impressive on both ends of the floor as he went 8/12 from the field to finish with 20 points along with 12 rebounds, his movement on offense was proving difficult for the Baylor big men to contain and he was equally impressive from beyond the arc going 2/4. Ejim followed up that performance with a workman like 13 points and 13 boards to record his 12th double double of the season as Iowa State avenged a previous loss to Texas Tech to win 86-66. Melvin Ejim has now posted a double-double in four of the last five games with averages of 15.0 points and 11.2 rebounds in that span.
1. Chiney Ogwumike (Stanford)
In an impressive week for probably for one of the best female athletes in College basketball, Chiney Ogwumike was the main catalyst on offence as no.4 Stanford faced off against no.15 UCLA last Sunday night. Going against another Nigerian athlete Atonye Nyingifa, Ogwumike showed off a variety of post moves, as she was a threat in more ways than one underneath the basket. UCLA managed to keep the first half close, using their hustle and quickness to get at the bigger Stanford team as the first half ended 30-25 in favor of Stanford, Chiney had 12 points, 5 rebounds and 3 steals at the break. In the second half, Chiney got going early as Stanford used two quick runs to establish a comfortable lead on their way to a 68-57 victory, she finished with 26 points and 7 rebounds in the game. On Friday night, Chiney notched up a doube double with 19 points and 12 rebounds as Stanford defeated Oregon State 90-53. It was a career record-tying 51st double-double for Chiney as Stanford stayed tied with California atop the Pac-12.
Atonye Nyingifa’s UCLA recovered from a loss to Stanford last weekend to defeat cross state rivals USC 68-54 on Friday night. Nyingifa was instrumental in the win going 11/14 from the field to finish with 22 points to lead all scorers, she added 6 rebounds in the contest. The win improved UCLA’s record to 20-6 on the season as they stay tied with Washington for a third-place tie in the Pac-12 standings.
Nigerian Junior International Promise Amukamara scored a career high 21 points and added 3 assists as Arizona State came out on top in a thrilling encounter against State rivals Arizona in double overtime. The 2nd year point guard was very instrumental throughout, and her layup with 18 seconds left in the first overtime tied the score to send the game into a second overtime where they finally put the game away, Arizona State shot 46.6 percent from the field and had 24 assists as a team. Amukamara is currently averaging 8.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game in Pac-12 action.
Featured Photo: ccsubluedevils.com