Raiders Fall to Oakland

February 16, 2016

By Steve Granata

FAIRBORN – Wright State fell to Oakland 89-73 in a battle for sole possession of second place in the Horizon League Monday night at the Nutter Center.

Coming off a 61-59 win over the number one team in the conference Valparaiso on Saturday night, the Raiders were looking to continue their streak of good fortune against Oakland. Both teams were tied for second place in the Horizon League with identical 10-4 conference records coming into tonight’s game. With just three regular season games left on the schedule it was a game with a lot on the line as the Raiders are looking to stay on top of the Horizon League standings and fight for top seeding in the Horizon League tournament come March. The last time these two teams met was in Oakland on January 29th in which the Raiders lost 89-63. The Raider’s effort to even the score fell short as the red hot Golden Grizzlies shot lights out and seemed near flawless in the decisive victory over Wright State.

“Tip our hats to Oakland,” said senior guard Joe Thomasson. “They beat us twice; they are the only team in the league to be able to do it. They played well, credit those guys.”

“We battled back, but we still have to play with more urgency,” said Mark Alstork. “If the team is losing you have to play with more urgency than the other team. Today they wanted it more.”

Mark Alstork led the Raiders scoring with 18 points, Joe Thomasson added 13 points and Biggie Minnis chipped in 12 points. Justin Mitchell contributed nicely off the bench with 8 points. Martez Walker scored 22 points and was 4-4 from 3-point range to lead Oakland while Jalen Hayes had 17 points, Kay Felder had 15 points and Percy Gibson added 14 points to contribute to the win.

Oakland moved out to a 7-2 advantage, but Wright State came back with a J.T Yoho 3-pointer and two consecutive baskets by Biggie Minnis to take the lead at 9-7. With the Raiders down six points at the 10:29 mark Michael Karena scored on a reverse layup and Thomasson connected on a 3-pointer to cut the lead down to one point. Biggie Minnis then made two free throws with 7:38 in the first half to give the Raiders a one point lead 23-22.
With the score tied 25-25 Oakland’s Walker hit a 3-pointer that sparked a 13-2 run and an 11 point lead at the 3:34 mark. With Oakland in the lead 42-31 Mark Alstork hit a much needed 3-pointer along with four free throws, two by Thomasson that were awarded on a Technical foul and two by Yoho to close the gap to just three points with 45 seconds remaining in the half. But with 33 seconds remaining Martez Walker dialed up another 3-pointer to take a 45-39 advantage into halftime.

Oakland moved out to a 16 point lead in the second half at the 16:26 mark only to see it slowly diminished as Thomasson’s 3-pointer sparked a 9-2 run to trim the lead back to a manageable eight points. Then with 8:50 remaining Thomasson went in the lane for a layup, then on the next possession got the assist as he found Justin Mitchell moving to the basket for the reverse layup to cut the lead to six points 64-58.

That is as close as the Raiders would get though as Oakland exploded in the following three minutes going on a 16-2 run that buried Wright State for the night. The Raiders would never recover as they watched the Golden Grizzlies secure the win and sole possession of second place in the Horizon League, for now. In this league anybody can beat anybody on any given night, so tighten your seatbelts it should be an interesting ride to the finish. Wright State drops to 16-12 overall and 10-5 in the Horizon League, Oakland improves to 19-9, 11-4.

“Sometimes you just have to tip your hat to the other team,” said Coach Billy Donlon. “Our fans won’t feel good about it, but for us there is still a lot to play for. If we win out and they (Oakland) lose one more, we are tied for second. We have to do what we can do to take care of business and beat a good Northern Kentucky team at home on Saturday, because that’s what’s next.”

“We have got to focus on the next game,” said Thomasson. “We still have a chance to come in second and reach our goal. We’ve got to be better and come with a greater sense of urgency for Saturday’s game. We’ve got to bounce back and get ready for Saturday.”

The Raider’s shot 40 percent from the field, Oakland shot 46 per cent. The Raiders were 6 of 16 from 3-point range for 38 percent, Oakland was 11 of 19 for 58 percent. Oakland was also on point at the foul line connecting on 22 of 23 free throws for 96 percent, the Raiders were 21 of 27 for 78 percent.

The Raider’s will be back in action this coming Saturday, Feb.20 as they host Northern Kentucky. Tipp off is at 7:00 p.m. at the Nutter Center.

 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar

February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio. February 15, 2016: The NCAA Basketball game between the Oakland Golden Grizzlies and the Wright State Raiders at the Nutter Center in Fairborn, Ohio.

NCAA BASKETBALL: FEB 15 - Oakland vs Wright State

WSU Women Fall to Georgia

December 21, 2015

Georgia pulls away in the final minutes to get the victory

By Stephen Granata

The Wright State women’s basketball team fell short in the final minutes to Georgia 63-57 despite a seven-point half-time lead Sunday afternoon at WSU’s Nutter Center.

If there is any doubt to the direction the WSU women’s program is heading it was made clear once again Sunday afternoon. Wright State, which is off to one of its best starts in school history and already has beaten a ranked opponent, #23 George Washington earlier in the season, was not playing for just respect as in teams of old, they were playing with the purpose to win.

“We keep going in the right direction, “said Coach Mike Bradbury. “Our players are as good as theirs (speaking of Georgia), that’s what people don’t understand, She (Antonia Hayes, leading scorer) could have went anywhere in America, she didn’t come here to not play those teams and beat them. That’s why it’s disappointing, I know it looks good to the people who never come, but to us we were supposed to win today. That is the only way we think, it is disappointing.”

“Hayes was the best player in the gym, which is what we expect; everybody needs to expect that too, Coach Bradbury added.”

The first quarter ended with the score deadlocked at 12-12 as both teams were trying to set the pace and find their rhythm. WSU pulled ahead for the first time in the second quarter led by Antonia Hayes four foul shots and a jumper to give the raiders the lead 20-14. Georgia battled back to within one point, but WSU surged ahead to a seven-point lead on Hayes two free-throws and a Kim Demming’s three-pointer to go up by a score of 26-19 at the half.

Both teams struggled from the field in the first half, Georgia shooting 24 percent from the field and 0-8 from three-point range. WSU shot 31 percent from the field and was 1-8 on three-pointers.

Early in the third quarter, WSU wasted no time extending their lead to 31-21 lead by a Demming’s three-pointer and a steal and lay-up from freshman point guard Emily Vogelpohl. Georgia again battled back with 9-2 run carving the ten point lead back to two points and making the score 34-32 with 5:21 remaining in the third quarter. Georgia took the lead back 39-38 with 45-seconds left in the third as Pachis Roberts knocked down two free-throws. Georgia held to a 42-40 lead at the end of the third quarter.

The game was tied four different times in the fourth quarter with the score 56-56 at the 3:26 mark on two Vogelpohl free-throws. The lady raiders only scored one more point the rest of the way as Georgia scored on two unanswered buckets by Merritt Hempe and Shacobia Barbee and ended the game scoring at the line to edge WSU for the win.

The Bulldogs hit 16 of 32 shots in the second half for 50 percent and ended the game shooting 37 percent overall. WSU hit 11 of 31 shots for 36 percent and were 33 percent overall. The real advantage came on the boards as WSU was outrebounded by Georgia 52-36.

Antania Hayes led the raiders with 26 points while Kim Demmings added 12 points and Emily Vogelpohl had 10 points along with 8 assists and 6 steals.
Georgia was led by Merritt Hempe with 19 points, Shacobia Barbee 15 points and Tiaria Griffin 12 points.

“We are good enough to play with anybody, we’ve proven that, “said Coach Bradbury concerning entering Horizon league play. “Our confidence level is fine, we are going to rebound the ball, we are going to rebound it every single game, and we will be okay.”

Up next

The Wright State women’s team (10-3) will be back in action Wednesday, December 30 as they open Horizon league play hosting UIC at 7:00 at the Nutter Center.

Short-handed Raiders fall to Valpo 66-56

January 18, 2015

By Mike Klingshirn

DAYTON, Ohio – The Wright State Raiders, a team decimated by injuries to two of their key inside players, dropped a 66-56 decision to the Valparaiso Crusaders (17-3, 4-1 HL), in front of a near capacity crowd of 7,664 on the season’s only scheduled game on a Saturday at the Nutter Center.

The Raiders, already without the services of Steven Davis for the past three weeks, got word on Thursday that JT Yoho, the team’s leading scorer and rebounder, who was having an all-conference year, would also be unavailable. He suffered a serious knee injury in the team’s previous game. Yoho’s injury — a major bone bruise of the entire knee — has the potential to sideline him for the remainder of the season.

“Long term, the injury won’t effect the future for his senior year,” head coach Billy Donlon said. “But it’s severe. It happened in the first five minutes of Cleveland State game. He was in agonizing pain and didn’t let anyone know because he wanted to play. If you look at how he played, it makes perfect sense.”

“Almost the entire knee is bruised,” Donlon added. “He doesn’t know (how it happened). It’s happened to me, where you’re playing and you go down the court twice, and you’ve lost your adrenaline. Then all of a sudden, you go, ‘God, that hurts’. And you don’t know where it happened.”

Wright State (10-9, 2-3 HL) had already entered the season with a small line-up. But the two recent injuries to 6’7” Davis and 6’6” Yoho, has transformed the Raiders into an even smaller team. It left them with just two big guys. One is a freshman (Roderick Davis) and the other is a first year player (Michael Karena).

As a result, the Raiders were forced to change their style of play in order to have any chance of beating a very physical Valpo team.

“If we don’t press, then they beat us by 30,” Donlon said. “We’re not going to beat them in the half court.”

The press forced the Crusaders into 18 turnovers, but the under-sized Raiders were out-rebounded 46-25, allowing Valpo to haul in 17 boards underneath their own basket.

“You’re asking a lot of a 6’3” guard to box out a 6’10” guy,” commented WSU’s Reggie Arceneaux.

Valpo opened the game by scoring the first two of six-straight points, on a Tevonn Walker layup off of a Wright State turnover. The Crusaders never trailed in the first half, stretching their lead to 24-13.

The Raiders closed the final seven minutes of the first half with a 14-5 run, to pull within 29-27 at the intermission.

An Arceneaux pull-up jumper in the lane, a Kendall Griffin layup, and Michael Karena free throw put the Raiders on top for the first time 32-30. After Valpo evened things at 32 all, a pair of Justin Mitchell baskets put Wright State back on top with their largest lead of the night 36-32.

Chrishawn Hopkins broke a 38-38 tie with a pair of free throws, making it 40-38 in favor of the Raiders. But a Victor Nickerson layup and 3-pointer put the Crusaders ahead to stay 43-40 with 7:43 left to play.

Joe Thomasson hit a trey to pull the Raiders to within 46-45 at the 6:20 mark, but Valpo answered by rattling off the next nine-straight points to go up 55-45 with 2:47 remaining and seal the Crusader victory.

“The game came down to the seven minute mark to the under-four minute media timeout,” Donlon said. “I thought that their guards out-toughed us. We had to play this game at about seven turnovers, because I thought that we’d get killed on the offensive glass.”

“When the size is what it is right now, you have to make up for it in other ways. We came out and we pressed. We put it in Thursday night, and the press really bothered Valpo. They shot what they shot from the floor (22-of-54) and had 18 turnovers. An 18-11 turnover margin in a normal game against Valpo will win you the game, but tonight that wasn’t going to be good enough.”

Reggie Arceneaux was the only Raider to score in double figures (10). Joe Thomasson grabbed a team-high seven rebounds.

Four Crusaders scored in double figures: Vashil Fernandez (14), Darien Walker (13), Alec Peters (11), and Tevonn Walker (11).

Up Next

The Raiders will need to right the ship away from the Nutter Center, as they embark upon a three game road trip — Milwaukee (Jan. 20), Detroit (Jan. 26), and Oakland (Jan. 28) — before returning home against the league-leading Green Bay Phoenix on February 2. The Monday night tip-off is scheduled an hour later than normal, at 8:00 pm.

Box Score

Men’s Basketball Stats

Post Game Audio


Coach Donlon



 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar

Raiders suffer difficult loss to Cleveland State

February 9, 2014

By Mike Klingshirn

DAYTON, Ohio – The Wright State Raiders dropped an emotional and hard fought decision to the Cleveland State Vikings on Saturday afternoon by the final score of 72-68. The loss dealt a serious blow to any aspiration that the Raiders may have had of earning the number two seed in next month’s Horizon League tournament. With the defeat, they find themselves three games back in the loss column to the second place Vikings with just four games remaining on the regular season schedule.

“Those guys (Cleveland State) came in with a direct purpose,” said WSU head coach Billy Donlon. “They achieved their purpose.”

The contest began slowly for the Raiders (14-13, 6-6 HL), who missed a lot of good shot attempts in the game’s first six minutes to fall behind 16-3. But a pair of Cole Darling free throws, a pair of Matt Vest treys, and another trey by AJ Pacher, quickly drew Wright State to within 18-14 with 11:30 left in the half.

Cleveland State (17-9, 8-3 HL) slowly stretched their lead to 29-20.

Wright State then turned up their defensive intensity to pitch a shutout over the remaining five minutes of the half. The Raiders drew to within 29-28 on 3-pointers from JT Yoho and AJ Pacher, followed by a Yoho layup.

With 1:02 remaining until halftime, the Raiders had the chance to take their first lead of the afternoon with Reggie Arceneaux at the free throw line. His front end of a one-and-one bounced around the rim before falling out. The failed attempt snapped a perfect season from the line for Reggie, who was 25-of-25 prior to the miss.

Arceneaux redeemed himself on the next Raider possession, however, by nailing a shot from beyond the arc to send his team into the halftime locker room with their only lead of the half at 31-29.

The Raiders were firing away with the long ball in the first twenty minutes. They hit 10-of-22 shot attempts from the field for the half, which included 6-of-14 from beyond the arc.

Unlike the first half, which saw just one lead change, the second half saw 13 lead changes, eight tied scores, and a pair of double digit runs from each team.

After a Cole Darling 3-pointer put the Raiders on top 38-37, Cleveland State rattled off ten unanswered points to go up 47-38 midway through the second stanza.

Like a yo-yo, Wright State responded with the game’s next eleven points, capped by a fast break in which Chrishawn Hopkins lobbed the ball to a high flying Jerran Young, who finished with a thunderous slam dunk. It put the Raiders up 49-47 and sent the crowd into a loud wild frenzy.

Sensing the game’s momentum shifting, Vikings’ head coach Gary Waters called timeout to settle his team down. It worked. CSU’s Charlie Lee, who finished with a game high 25 points, hit a jumper and a 3-pointer on his team’s next two possessions to put Cleveland State back on top 52-49 with 6:51 left to play.

Wright State answered with a mini-run to retake the lead 58-54 — their largest of the game — after JT Yoho completed a traditional three point play on a jumper and free throw with 5:18 remaining.

From that point on, the lead changed hands seven times, and CSU’s Charlie Lee was nearly unstoppable. He stepped up big by scoring 12 out of his team’s next 14 points.

“Charlie Lee was magnificent,” Donlon said. “The hardest guy to guard on a basketball floor when he (Lee) is the best player is the point guard, because they are going to get the ball in his hands.”

After Miles Dixon hit one of two free throws to extend WSU’s advantage to 67-65 with 28 seconds left, Charlie Lee was fouled by Jerran Young on a 3-point attempt with 16 seconds to play. Lee calmly swished all three attempts to put the Vikings back on top 68-67.

“It was a very smart play for Charlie to shoot the ball then, because you’re down two and you’re going to try to take the first look that you can,” Donlon said. “If you miss, you want to have more time to prolong the game. If you wait until the clock goes down and you do miss and we get the rebound, you can’t prolong the game.”

With what appeared to be Wright State’s final chance to win the contest, Chrishawn Hopkins attacked the lane and dished to Yoho. With seven seconds showing on the clock, Yoho missed a contested fade away jumper from ten feet away. CSU grabbed the rebound and hit four more free throws down the stretch to seal the victory by a final score of 72-68.

The Vikings out-rebounded Wright State 17-6 in the second half, for an advantage of 31-22 in the game.

Cleveland State’s Anton Grady, who did not play in WSU’s 49-46 victory over the Vikings three weeks ago, recorded a double-double with 15 points and 12 rebounds.

Four Raiders scored in double figures: Young (15), Yoho (14), Darling (12), and Dixon (10).

Next up

The Raiders return home on Friday February 21 for a battle against the Detroit Titans. Tip-off is scheduled for 10:00 pm to accommodate an ESPNU broadcast.

Box Score

Men’s Basketball Stats


Post-game Audio

Coach Donlon

Darling and Dixon


 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar

Green Bay grabs control of Horizon League with victory over Raiders

January 18, 2014

By Mike Klingshirn

DAYTON, Ohio – The Green Bay Phoenix took early control of this season’s Horizon League standings with a 79-69 victory over the Wright State Raiders, in a much-anticipated battle that featured the two teams picked by many to win the Horizon League championship.

“You can’t win championships in January,” Green Bay head coach Brian Wardle said after the game. “But you sure can lose them.”

With the victory, Green Bay (14-3, 4-0 Horizon League) captured their ninth-straight victory, and the third of their current four-game Horizon League road trip. Wright State (11-9, 3-2 HL) remained in second place with the loss.

“This was a really important game,” said Alec Brown, Green Bay’s 7-foot-1 NBA prospect. “We knew that if we could come in here and steal this game, it would be huge for us. We played our hearts out.”

Brown hadn’t practiced all week due to an ankle sprain, and his playing status for the game was questionable. But with three NBA scouts in the arena watching, Brown showed his durability and tolerance for pain with an outstanding performance. He finished the contest with 24 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field, including 1-of-2 from behind the arc.

Wright State took its first and only lead of the game midway through the first half on a Jerran Young slam dunk to go up 21-19. The Phoenix answered the Raider threat — as was the case all night long — by responding with a bucket which ignited an 11-2 run, making it 30-23.

Wright State finished the final two minutes of the first half strong by scoring the half’s final seven points — five by Cole Darling and two by Miles Dixon — to go into the halftime locker room down 39-36. The Raiders must have felt extremely fortunate to trail by only three points because Green Bay had shot 61.5-percent from the floor and out-rebounded the Raiders 20-9 up to that point.

An AJ Pacher free throw coming out of the half, pulled Wright State to within 39-37, but Green Bay answered with a 9-0 run to take control again at 48-37.

After trading a few baskets, the Raiders roared back with a 9-0 run of their own, capped by a Pacher 3-pointer, to close within 55-54 with 10:16 left to play.

However, as was the case all night long, the Green Bay answered the challenge, holding onto their lead, and building it back up to 61-56, 71-63, and finally 79-69.

Wright State head coach Billy Donlon was surprised that the Phoenix were able to exert their will over his team. “The way that we lost tonight is extremely humbling because I value toughness,” Donlon said. “They get an A+ and we get an F.”

Wright State hit 27-of-55 shot attempts for the game for 49-percent. Green Bay shot 60-percent (28-of-47).

“We wanted them to make 3-point shots to beat us, but they only took four,” Donlon said. “So never mind shooting and missing … they only took four.”

Alec Brown led the Phoenix with 24 points. Keifer Sykes, Green Bay’s outstanding guard added 18, while Greg Mays and Jordan Fouse chipped in with 14 and 10 respectively.

Five Raiders scored in double figures: Reggie Arceneaux (17), Jerran Young (13), Cole Darling (13), Miles Dixon (12), and AJ Pacher (10).

With the victory over Wright State, Green Bay leads the all-time series 25-24. The Raiders lead 18-9 in games played in Dayton.

Next Up

With a schedule that only the Horizon League can concoct, the Raiders return home on Tuesday night (Jan. 21 tip-off at 7:00) for their third contest in less than 100 hours to battle the Milwaukee Panthers. But before that, Wright State will travel to northeast Ohio for a Sunday afternoon matchup against the Cleveland State Vikings (Sun. Jan. 19 tip-off at 1:00).

Box Score

Men’s Basketball Stats


Post-game Audio

Coach Donlon

Arceneaux and Darling

UWGBs Wardle and Brown


 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar

Miami extends Wright State’s losing streak to four straight

December 16, 2013

By Mike Klingshirn

OXFORD, Ohio – The Wright State Raiders dropped their fourth straight game — all on the road — in a hard-fought battle on Sunday afternoon to the Miami RedHawks at Millett Hall. The final score was 59-56, in a contest that was a back-and-forth affair until free throws decided the outcome in the game’s closing seconds.

The contest saw a combined 41 turnovers committed in a sloppy error-plagued game, by two teams who were desperate for a victory. The Raiders (5-7) turned it over 20 times, while the RedHawks (2-5) pulled out the victory, even though they had committed 21 turnovers and made just five assists on the afternoon.

“Our record is not where it should be,” said WSU head coach Billy Donlon. “We have a good basketball team, and we’ll see where we are when it matters in March.”

Chrishawn Hopkins, the transfer from Butler, who played for Butler’s Final Four team in 2010-11, made his first much anticipated appearance in a Wright State uniform, coming out of the 15:56 media timeout. It didn’t take long for him to make an impact, as he stole a Miami pass and drove the length of the floor to score less than 37 seconds later to give the Raiders their first lead at 8-6. JT Yoho connected on a three-pointer on his team’s next possession, extending WSU’s lead to 11-6 … their largest lead of the entire game.

Hopkins showed signs of rust early, from not having played in nearly a-year-and-a-half. He committed four turnovers without an assist in 13 minutes of first half action. He was solid in the second half however, committing no turnovers while handing out three assists, and finishing the game with four points on 2-of-4 shooting in 24 minutes of action.

The RedHawks eventually fought their way back to tie the score at 17, midway through the half. A Reggie Johnson steal of a Hopkins pass resulted in a basket and free throw, after being fouled by WSU’s AJ Pacher on his drive to the hoop. The play snapped a 19-19 tie, putting the RedHawks on top 22-19 at the seven minute mark.

A pair of free throws by Miami’s Geovonie McKnight ended the first half to send the RedHawks into the locker room with a 34-29 lead.

The second half began with a Jerran Young steal of a Miami pass and thunderous dunk at the other end of the court. The Raiders crept to within 34-33 on another steal, this time by Matt Vest at the 16:34 mark.

WSU’s starting five did not allow Miami to score through the first media timeout of the second half. Coach Donlon substituted some players, and in hindsight, he wished that he hadn’t.

“I’m a defensive guy,” Donlon said. “I knew that they (Miami) hadn’t scored. I should have just let those five guys play until they scored to see what happens.”

The Raiders took a brief 39-38 lead with 12:05 left to play, before Miami scored five straight points to regain the lead one minute later at 43-39.

An AJ Pacher jumper tied to score 51-51 with 3:33 left to play. Five lead changes followed until Miami’s Will Felder hit a pair of free throws to put his team up 57-55 with 33 seconds to go.

On the next possession, Pacher was fouled by Reggie Johnson, sending him to the line for the one-and-bonus with 20 seconds left. AJ made his first attempt, but the second attempt missed, off the right side of the rim. Pacher followed his missed shot, grabbed the rebound, and was fouled one second later, again by Johnson, sending AJ back to the line for another one-and-bonus.

Pacher missed the front end of the bonus and the score remained 57-56. Miami’s Quinten Rollins grabbed the rebound and hit 2-of-4 free throw attempts over the next two consecutive possessions to stretch the RedHawk lead to 59-56 with 7 seconds to play.

Reggie Arceneaux fired up a desperation attempt at the buzzer from beyond the arc, in front of his team’s bench. It had little chance of going in, and the Raiders fell in final minute of a game for the fifth time in this young season.

Following the game, a disappointed AJ Pacher, with tears in his eyes, sniffled and spoke softly, taking blame for the loss. His coach saw it differently, however.

“It doesn’t come down to AJ’s free throws,” said Donlon. “There are a million plays before those free throws where the game could have been different.”

“In fact, he gave us a chance to win the game. Down late, we ran some stuff that got him layups. He caught it. He finished, and went up and scored. If he doesn’t make those plays, we don’t have a chance to make free throws at the end.”

“He got his own rebound on his own free throw miss. He tried to make a play to win the game and got fouled. If he just thinks about the end result (the missed free throw), then he’s learned nothing from this game.”

Pacher led the Raiders in scoring with 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field and 1-of-3 from the charity stripe. Jerran Young was the only other Raider to score in double figures with ten points.

Next Up

Wright State returns to action at the Nutter Center on Thursday night (Dec. 19) with a 7:00 tip-off against Eastern Illinois (3-6).

Box score:

Box Score

Men’s Basketball Stats


Post-game Audio

Miami’s McKnight, Felder and Johnson

Hopkins and Pacher

Coach Donlon


 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar

Purple Aces turn the Raiders blue

February 24, 2013

By Mike Klingshirn

DAYTON, Ohio – The Wright State Raiders ventured outside of league play on Saturday afternoon, only to suffer one of their worst defeats of the season, at the hands of the Evansville Purple Aces from the Missouri Valley Conference, by a final score of 70-58. An impressive contingent of a few hundred Evansville fans made the trip to the NutterCenter, helping to lift the number in the house to 3,428.

The Raiders (18-10, 9-5 HL) were without the services of their top two scorers (Reggie Arceneaux and Cole Darling) for the second consecutive game due to injury. Freshman J.T. Yoho did his best to help fill the void by recording his first double-double, scoring twenty points and pulling down eleven rebounds … both career highs. Unfortunately for WrightState, he was one of the few bright spots for his team.

Evansville (16-13, 8-8 MVC) opened the contest by scoring the game’s first nine points, and the Raiders got no closer than five all afternoon long.

“We were absolutely hammered,” said WrightState head coach Billy Donlon. “Sometimes you’re the hammer, and sometimes you’re the nail. Today we were the nail.”

The Aces scored early and often, bolting to a 17-3 lead, just five and a half minutes into the contest. By that time, coach Donlon had already burned two time-outs in an effort to help stem the tide.

“In those time-outs, I thought that we were getting ready to be run out of here. I felt that we were getting ready to be beat by forty,” Donlon said.

“I never call two time-outs in the first five minutes of a game. It wasn’t their motion (offense). It was transition basketball. They (Evansville) just blew it up the floor. They blew by us on one pass in the half court. That’s not motion. We didn’t guard our guard very well.”

It wasn’t until the 11:59 mark of the first half that WrightState sank their first field goal. That came on a Jerran Young put-back off of a missed Matt Vest shot attempt from beyond the arc to make the score 17-5.

Down 21-7, the Raiders went on a 9-0 run to pull within 21-16, but the Aces countered with an 8-0 run of their own, to push the margin back to 29-16 with 6:11 before halftime.

Yoho kept his team within sight of the Aces with a hot shooting hand by scoring eight points over the next six minutes. He had 16 points, in all, before halftime. Still, the Raiders trailed 39-28 at the intermission.

WrightState drew to within 41-36, but six unanswered points by the Aces put Evansville comfortably back on top 47-36 with 15:23 left to play. From there, the Aces maintained a double-digit lead for all but a few seconds over the remainder of the contest. Evansville stretched their lead to 70-52, before the Raiders scored the game’s final six points.

“You have to be so mentally tough when you play a motion team,” Donlon said. “And I just didn’t think that we were there tonight.”

WSU was led in scoring by Yoho (20), Young (11), and Kendall Griffin (10). Matt Vest contributed with six rebounds and five assists.

WrightState returns to Horizon League action on Tuesday evening at UIC.


Injury Updates:

Reggie Arceneaux (concussion) is hopeful for Tuesday.

It is still being determined if or when Cole Darling (foot) will be back.


Box Score


Post Game Audio

Yoho and Griffin

Coach Donlon

Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar




#23 drops 23 for WSU but Valpo drops WSU 68-61

February 13, 2013

AJ Pacher stepped up big for WSU Tuesday night against Valpo with 7 points in 12 minutes of first half play and 23 points in 24 total game minutes.  Along with 6 rounds, 3 assists and steal, that is one impressive line in the box score.  Unfortunately, it was not enough to overcome the power game of Valpo as the Raiders fall to 17-9 (8-5).

It was quite the night in the Nutter Center as at least one of the men in stripes appeared to have chip on his shoulder before the game even started.  He allegedly was overheard complaining about the hostile crowds he had to deal with.  Given that several students and a platinum seat holder were threatened during the game and a former WSU Board of Trustee was ejected from the game, I’d say someone got up on the wrong side of the bed yesterday.   This ejected fan reportedly said something about the “pathetic officiating” but nothing vulgar or personal were part of the comments.

The officials did not impact the game’s outcome but they made themselves visible which is not what a quality crew does; officials should essentially go unnoticed as they do their job.

The Raider bench scored 45 of WSU’s 68 points (Pacher 23, Dixon 13 and Arceneauz 9) while the starting five struggled with 6-19 shooting (31%).  As a team WSU shot 41% while Valpo shot 49% for the contest.  Both teams struggled behind the arc shooting around 24%.

After playing 4 games in nine days last night, the Raiders are off until Feb 20 when the travel to Cleveland.  Then up is the Bracketbuster game against Evansville on Feb. 23, and finally, the last regular season home game against Youngstown on March 2.


Box Score


Post Game Audio


Valpo Coach and Kevin Van_Wijk

WSU’s Pacher and Dixon


Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar





Raiders fall 83-76 to the Titans Wednesday night

January 31, 2013

Raiders drop third straight game and 4th in last five games.

Wright State (14-8, 5-4 Horizon) is off until Monday, February 4, when the Raiders host Loyola at 7:00.

Post game Audio

Arceneaux and Griffin


Box Score


Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar








UIC Flames turn out the lights on Blackout Night: Raiders fall 55-49

January 27, 2013

By Mike Klingshirn

DAYTON, Ohio – Saturday evening was Blackout Night at the Nutter Center. The Wright State Raiders, playing on their home court, wore black uniforms and the first 5,000 fans that entered the turnstiles received black t-shirts to wear. It was also Homecoming weekend on campus, so a larger than normal crowd of 8,065 filled the place — double the size of WSU’s largest crowd in nine home dates this season.

Prior to tip-off, Blackout Night seemed like a festive occasion, unless of course, you are superstitious. One would be hard pressed to remember a good performance by any Raider team that played in those black uniforms. Tonight was no exception, as the Wright State Raiders suffered their first home loss of the season to the UIC Flames 55-49.

Maybe the Great Rowdy Raider in the sky frowns upon the black uniforms, because after all, green and gold are Wright State’s official colors.

“Burn them,” said WSU radio color analyst Bob Grote following the game. “We have never won in those things.”

The game began well enough for the Raiders (14-7, 5-3 HL). After a JT Yoho 3-pointer put Wright State on top 8-4, UIC proceeded to rattle off runs of 11-straight and 9-straight points, sandwiched around a Tavares Sledge field goal to give the Flames a commanding 24-10 lead with six minutes left in the first half.

UIC (13-8, 4-4 HL) played a zone defense and WSU was unable to shoot over it. Wright State played as poorly offensively as they could play, missing a lot of open shots, and hitting just 5-of-21 first half attempts. As a result, the Raiders found themselves on the wrong end of a 26-14 halftime score.

After UIC’s Josh Crittle began the second half by hitting a jumper to put the Flames ahead by a score of 28-14, Wright State went on a 12-2 run to pull to within 30-26 with 13:06 left to play.

A Cole Darling layup narrowed the gap to 38-36 at the 5:25 mark, but UIC was able to push their lead back to 48-41.

JT Yoho drained a three-pointer with 39 seconds left to play to make it 49-46, but UIC broke the Raider press on the ensuing in-bounds play for an easy layup by Crittle, which helped seal the 55-49 UIC victory.

Darling led the Raiders in scoring with 11 points on 5-of-15 shooting. Matt Vest hauled down nine rebounds and dished out four of the six Raider assists in the game.

WSU shot just 33-percent from the field for the game (18-of-54), and an ice-cold 2-of-19 from beyond the arc.

The loss was Wright State’s second straight defeat — both in the black uniforms — after beginning the season 14-5. The team had just returned home in the wee hours of Thursday morning following a brutal 3-game/5-day road trip.

“They’ve got to get their confidence back,” Donlon said. “We haven’t been able to practice. With four games in eight days, you don’t practice. In between days, you’re resting. Hopefully we’ll get a chance to get a practice in.”


Post Game Audio

Coach Donlon

Vest and Darling


Box Score


 Photos © and Courtesy of Tim G. Zechar








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