Tuesday, December 16, 2014

EWU Eagle Eye Player of the Week Nominees Week 5 2014-2015

The only thing that would have made this week better is if the Eagles had found a way to hold off Washington in the waning minutes of Sunday night's game.  As it was, it took very tough, very unlikely 3 point shots in the final minutes for the 17th ranked Huskies to beat an Eastern Hoops team that is now the 16th ranked mid-major program in the country.  The nation saw what these Eagles did to the Huskies, and as a result... the Huskies have been moved up to be ranked 16th in the nation.

Just a couple days before that the Eagles went to San Francisco and beat a Dons team that had 21 wins a year ago and lost the West Coast Conference semi's in overtime to BYU.

So how did the Eagles get through this week?  On the backs of their stars, click below to check out the nominees for this week's #EAGLEEYEPOW

It's impossible to post one of these without mentioning Venky Jois, the junior forward has been on an absolute tear.  He is now averaging career highs in points (20.3), FG% (62.8), 3P% (33.3), FT% (59.1), blocks (2.6) and steals (1.5).  He's averaging career lows in personal fouls (1.9) and turnovers (2.5 tied with his freshman year).  Over the last two games, he piled up 28 points, 19 rebounds, 4 blocks, 3 assists and 3 steals.  Importantly he continued his hot shooting from the FT line hitting 7 of 10.  If he keeps hitting at that pace it makes him very, very difficult to defend in the paint.  He did accumulate 4 personal fouls in each game this week, but managed to play 32 minutes in each game despite the foul trouble.

Tyler Harvey: I was feeling like Tyler had faded a bit the past few games, until I looked deeper.  Tyler takes a lot of shots, because the team counts on him to do so.  He played every minute of Sunday's game against Washington, that kind of availability and fitness is so crucial to a mid-major program competing with the "big-boys."  Beyond that he was still playing and playing well as the Eagles tried to bounce back and retake the lead from Washington as he hit a big time 3 to bring Eastern within 2 points (77-79) with just 28 seconds to go.  Over the two games Tyler scored 40 points and added 6 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and 1 block.

Drew Brandon: many will look at the Senior Point Guard's stat line against San Francisco, [1 point (0-7 from the field, 1-2 from FT), 5 rebounds, 3 steals to go with 3 turnovers and 4 personal fouls] and see a bad game, If they had watched that game they would have seen a tenacious defender and outright warrior giving his team everything he had including 23 tough minutes.  As Coach Jim Hayford pointed out in the postgame, Drew was playing with a bad back.

Beyond that Drew bounced back against the Huskies and nearly earned his 3rd double-double of the season finishing with 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 steal.

Ognjen "OG" Miljkovic, Eastern's youngest starter poured in 34 points in two games and added 3 steals, 2 rebounds and 1 block.  Early foul trouble against Washington allowed Bogdan Bliznyuk to steal some minutes or "OG" may have scored 20 in back to back games.  "OG" may not have stuffed the stat sheet, but was a reliable third option to score anywhere in both games hitting 7 threes and scoring 13 more points inside including 7 of 10 FT's.  When you third option is scoring that much, it makes it impossible for teams to devote extra defenders to Tyler Harvey and Venky Jois.

Did I miss an outstanding performance here?  Don't forget to comment below, tweet us @EWUEagleEye, or comment on our facebook page with your vote!  Use #EagleEyePOW

Please follow us on Twitter and Like us on Facebook: