Courtesy: Ilya Pinchuk (Moscow, Idaho)
Stephen Madison has tallied 20+ points in two of his last five games.
Idaho faces EWU Thursday
Courtesy: Idaho Athletic Media Relations
          Release: 12/04/2012
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Game 7: Idaho (2-4) at Eastern Washington (2-5)
When: Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012 (6:05 p.m. PT)
Where: Cheney, Wash. (Reese Court)
Radio: Vandal Radio Network/VandalXtra
Television: SWX [Sam Adams/Dan Dickau]
Online Video: www.BigSkyTV.org
Live Stats: www.GoEags.com

A Look at the Eagles
Eastern Washington played its first six games of the year on the road and posted a 1-5 record to start, but knocked of Cal State Fullerton last Friday in its home opener, 79-75. The Eagles average 75.0 points per game on 40.5 percent shooting, but give up 84.1 points and a 47.7 opponent clip. They average 10 three-point makes per game, but opponents are making just six. EWU is balanced in its perimeter shooting, too. Of the team’s 13 active players, 10 have already made at least one 3-pointer this season. Opponents are averaging 39.6 rebounds per game and a +2.2 rebounding margin. Opponents have also done most of their damage later in the games so far, with 46.0 points per game in the second half.

Eastern Washington Head Coach Jim Hayford
Jim Hayford is in his second season at Eastern Washington. He holds a 17-22 record with the school and a 271-106 overall tally in 13-plus seasons. Last season, he led the Eagles to a 15-17 record and fourth-place Big Sky finish. Before EWU, Hayford spend 10 seasons at Whitworth University, where he led the Pirates to a 217-57 record and six NCAA Division II Tournament berths. He is a 1989 graduate of Azusa Pacific University.

Idaho Vandals
A solid defensive and rebounding effort in the second half, paired with an impressive free throw performance gave Idaho a 73-66 win over UC Davis last Saturday. The Vandal men went 26-of-31 (.839) from the free throw line and out-rebounded the Aggies by a 35-24 margin in the win. Junior guard Stephen Madison posted his second 20-point game of the year with 21 points on 7-of-14 shooting, while senior center Kyle Barone added 12 points and eight boards.

Vandals vs. Eagles
Thursday marks the 76th meeting in series history between the Vandals and Eagles. Idaho holds a 51-24 series edge, but EWU took last year’s meeting at Moscow, 73-66. Idaho took a 70-60 victory last time the Vandals visited Cheney on Nov. 27, 2010. While last year’s game was decided by seven points, it hasn’t exactly been a history of nail-biters. In the 75 previous meetings, 42 ended with double-digit wins and 13 have been decided by 20 or more points. Only three of the last 18 games in the series were decided by five or fewer points. Idaho is 17-12 against EWU in games played at Cheney, Wash. Also of note, Idaho’s first win in program history against a collegiate opponent was a 39-2 win over EWU in 1906.

Welcome to the Club!
A put-back layup with less than one minute to go in the first half on Dec. 1 against UC Davis gave senior center Kyle Barone his 1,000th career point. The basket made him the 13th member of Idaho’s 1,000-Point Club. He’s the first Vandal to break the 1,000-point barrier since Tanoris Shepard, who scored 1,137 from 2002-06. The last Vandal frontcourt player to crack quadruple digits was Deon Watson (1,115) in 1994.

Junior Jump?
Stephen Madison was the most improved scorer in the WAC last season after improving by 8.4 points per game from his freshman to sophomore seasons. He tallied 12.1 points per contest last season and scored 20 points once. Through six games this season, he’s leading the team with a 15.8 scoring average and already a pair of 20-point outings. If he maintains that average over the remainder of the season, he’ll have a shot to crack 1,000 points by the end of the year.

Quick-Change Possessions
Idaho had a season-high 17 transition points in its win over UC Davis on Dec. 1. The Vandals have had at least nine fast-break points in four of their six games this season, but surrendered more than four transition points to just one opponent so far. Overall, Idaho holds a 39-13 edge in transition points this season.

Click on the PDF link above to view complete game notes.
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