By Marc Weems
There are nearly no words left to say about this years version of Youngstown State Men’s Basketball. Almost nothing that went well last year is going well this year.
It’s been a strange year and it’s hard to imagine how good this team would be with health. Unfortunately, that’s only one of the problems this team has.
A weekend series against Oakland seemed to be just what the Penguins needed. The Golden Grizzlies were a team that couldn’t find consistency and don’t you worry, YSU gave them a glimpse of what that could be for it.
Instead of winning a game at all, the Penguins (7-7, 3-7 Horizon League) really played terrible in both games.
After a promising weekend at Wright State (9-4, 7-3 HL), the Penguins set itself back with a losing weekend in Michigan.
Two terrible games
In the first game, YSU couldn’t hit a three-pointer if it bought one off a shelf. When a team shoots 29 threes and hits seven, it loses. There is nearly no way a team shoots that badly and wins unless the other team doesn’t show up.
Oakland outrebounded the Penguins and had more assists in its 82-65 win.
The only good thing was Myles Hunter showing out with 18 points in 4-of-5 three-point shooting. Naz Bohannon finished with just 11 points but hit five of his eight shots.
Also, when a team scores 21 fast break points to your seven, it’s tough to catch up.
Jalen Moore and Rashad Williams both scored 18 points to bury the Penguins.
Game 2 sucked too
Yet again, I may have been able to hit one or two threes for YSU even by accident. It hit 7-of-31 from the three-point line. Oakland only shot 7-of-24 from three but YSU only scored nine points at the free throw line to Oakland’s 22. That’s a loss folks.
Hunter continued his solid weekend with another 18 points on four made three-pointers. He shot 7-of-15 from the floor.
That weekend performance earned Hunter the Freshman of the Week award which is good for this team’s future but not exactly it’s current moment. Hunter started both games signaling injuries are hurting this team.
Jalen Moore dominated even more in the second game. He scored 31 points as Bohannon was held under 10 points. That’s a recipe for disaster for YSU every single time.
Where does this team go from here?!
Well how the hell do I know? I’m serious, I’m just not totally sure.
When you can’t shoot threes, no one can penetrate well enough and your best player isn’t playing…. losses will happen.
It’s been tough sledding for this team that has certainly taken a step backwards. If the Penguins can right the ship in any certain way, this season won’t be a loss. At the moment, YSU is tied for dead last in the conference. This team was touted as second-best at the beginning of the year.
Next up unfortunately
Next weekend, YSU hosts UIC (7-4, 4-2 HL). The Flames are a hot team of sorts. It’s won two straight games but not in two weekends. The Flames beat Robert Morris (3-5, 2-3 HL) twice.
It’ll be a tough task for a team that’s been struggling to find anything it’s truly good at against good teams.