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MBB-FBS: Utah Valley Wolverines (20-6) at Seattle Redhawks (18-9)

  • Utah Valley takes its four-game win streak into the Emerald City this week as the team travels to the Pacific Northwest to take on Seattle U on Saturday night at the Redhawk Center. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. MT
  • Utah Valley sits atop the WAC standings with an 11-2 record. The Wolverines also hold the top spot in the WAC resume seeding system. If the season ended today, UVU would take the No. 1 seed into the WAC Tournament in Las Vegas.
  • Le’Tre Darthard scored a career-high 31 points and Tim Fuller added a 14-point, 13-rebound double-double to lead Utah Valley to an 90-83 win over in-state WAC rival Southern Utah last week at the UCCU Center. Trey WoodburyAziz Bandaogo, and Small each scored 10 points while Tim Ceaser added nine. Bandaogo was just two rebounds shy of a double-double with eight boards to go along with three blocks.
  • Utah Valley junior guard Le’Tre Darthard has been named the TicketSmarter Western Athletic Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Week. It marks the second time this season that Darthard has earned the award. In Saturday’s 90-83 win over Southern Utah, Darthard scored a career-high 31 points with nine rebounds and three steals. Over the two games last week, Darthard averaged 19.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.0 steals, and 2.0 assists per game. He shot 39.1 percent (9-of-23) from the floor and a 94.7 percent (18-of-19) clip from the free throw line.
  • Utah Valley has hit the 20-win mark for a second straight season. This year’s team has hit the 20-win mark faster than any team in UVU history in the program’s full Division I status era. The 2003-04 team hit the 20-win mark through 25 games during UVU’s Division I provisional status era. It’s only the second team in UVU history the Wolverines have won 20-plus games in back-to-back seasons. 
  • The Wolverines committed a season-low five turnovers in its 71-55 win over California Baptist on Feb. 8. The five turnovers are the fewest turnovers in a game since 2014 when UVU had five against Seattle U (2/13/14) and three against Grand Canyon (1/11/14). The five turnovers are the fewest of the Mark Madsen era.
  • Utah Valley has won 17 of its last 19 games over a nearly three-month stretch. During that stretch, Utah Valley rattled off 11 straight wins that began with an 88-78 win over Long Beach State on Dec. 3 and ended in an 85-80 loss to Seattle U on Jan. 14. The 11-game streak is the second longest streak in program history behind the 2011-12 team, which won 13 straight.
  • Utah Valley is the top shot blocking team in the nation with 165 blocks and a 6.3 blocks per game average. The Wolverines sit ahead of Iona (6.1), Milwaukee (5.8), Illinois (5.8), Florida (5.7), and Oral Roberts (5.7). Utah Valley also ranks second nationally in defensive rebounds per game (29.62) and sixth in rebounds per game (40.23). Utah Valley’s 165 blocks are the most swats ever recorded in a single season in program history, breaking the previous record of 157 set during the 2019-20 season.
  • Aziz Bandaogo ranks in the top-10 nationally in six statistical categories. He ranks fourth in blocks (76), sixth in double-doubles (14), sixth in rebounds (277), sixth in blocks per game (2.92), sixth in defensive rebounds per game (7.81), and ninth in rebounds per game (10.7).

Saturday night’s game at Seattle U will be broadcast live on the ESPN+, which is available on the ESPN+ app and at ESPNplus.com.  The game will also be broadcast over the Utah County airwaves on ESPN 960 AM with Jim McCulloch on the call.

Seattle U enters Saturday’s game with an 18-9 overall record and a 9-5 mark in WAC play. The Redhawks hold an impressive 11-1 record at home this season. The team won a pair of home games last week over Utah Tech and Grand Canyon. The team most recently dropped an 84-63 decision on the road to California Baptist on Wednesday night. Senior guard/forward Riley Grigsby finished with a game-high 23 points and redshirt junior guard Cameron Tyson had 17 in the loss to the Lancers. Tyson leads the team in scoring this season at 18.8 points a game. Grigsby and Alex Schumacher also average double figures at 13.7 and 12.1 points per game, respecitvly. Grigsby leads the team on the boards, pulling down 5.4 rebounds a game. Tyson leads the team with 82 three-point field goals, which ranks 13th nationally. He also ranks fifth nationally in three-point field goal attempts at 241. As a team, Seattle U ranks 10th in the country in three-point attempts per game (28.0) and 37th in threes made per game (8.9). 

Utah Valley and Seattle U will meet for the 26th time on the basketball hardwood. The Redhawks hold a slight 13-12 advantage in the series. The two teams have split the two-game WAC series two of the last three seasons. The two teams only played one game against eachother during the 2020-21 season. Seattle U handed the Wolverines their only loss at home this season on Jan. 14, taking an 85-80 win in Orem. UVU holds a 4-8 record against Seattle U in games played in Seattle. 

LAST TIME vs. SU: Seattle U 85, Utah Valley 80 (January 14, 2023 – Orem)
Aziz Bandaogo came up just short of a triple double with career-high 23 points, 13 rebounds, and career-best seven assists to lead Utah Valley in an 85-80 setback to Seattle U on Jan. 14 at the UCCU Center. The Wolverines had won 11 straight before falling to the Redhawks. 

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