Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Myles Hamilton Could Make Cleveland State debut Tuesday

Cleveland State's struggling offense could get a boost Tuesday as Myles Hamilton could make his Vikings debut against Rider in the opening game of the Cancun Challenge in Cancun, Mexico (12:30 p.m., YouTube).

"He should be ready to go for the Rider game," Vikings head coach Gary Waters said last week at his media gathering.

Hamilton, a Kennessaw State transfer, has been suspended for the first three games for a violation of team rules.

He started 39 of 54 games with KSU, averaging 6.0 points, 2.4 assists in 21.9 minutes in his two-year career with the Owls.

If Hamilton returns Tuesday, he should help provide stability at the point guard position where play has been inconsistent.

As a team, CSU is averaging just 6.7 assists per game (ranked 350th out of 351 DI schools).

"[It's a work] in progress," said Waters of the point guard play. "Myles Hamilton has the biggest strength to do that."

Sophomore Kenny Carpenter and freshmen Rob Edwards have been handling the point guard duties, with junior Andre Yates, the starting shooting guard, also seeing time at the one.

Carpenter (3.7 points, 1.3 assists) started the first two games, while Edwards (8.7 points, 1 assists) started the last game.

In his first collegiate start, Edwards scored a team-high 16 points (on 6-of-12 shooting) in CSU's 73-45 loss to Rhode Island on Saturday. He also had one assist and two turnovers in 35 minutes.

"We are going to need his offensive power," Waters said about Edwards, whose best position is shooting guard. "He brings offensive power that the others don't have."

Lead dawgs: One of the biggest question marks Waters had entering the season was who was going to score the ball?

As of Monday, CSU's offense is averaging 53.3 points per game (ranked 350th out of 351 DI schools), only American University (46 points per game) is averaging less points then the Vikings.

"In order to have a pretty good team offensively, you have to have at least 40 to 45 points from your lead dogs [top three scorers]."

So far this season, CSU's top three scorers - Demonte Flannigan (12.3 points), Edwards and Yates (7.7) are averaging a combined 28.7 points per game.

Waters is hoping Flannigan, Vinny Zollo and Yates can become his "lead dawgs."

"If a person like Demonte steps up and averages 14 to 15 points, and we get 10 from Vinny and 10 from Yates, if get those three to be more consistent, then everyone else can filter in."

Unfortunately, Flannigan, Zollo and Yates struggled against Rhode Island, going a combined 1-for-19, for six points.

After having one of his best career games against Malone (22 points, 17 rebounds), Flannigan had one of his worst games against URI (four points, 1-10 FG).

'I'm glad that Demonte stepped forward against [Malone] because he always had the potential," Waters said.

Zollo, the lone senior on the team, has scored a total of six points in two division I games against Akron and URI. He scored 12 points on 4-of-7 shooting against Malone.

"I need Vinny to step forward and hit some shots," said Waters.

Yates has been the most consistent scorer through the first two games. He scored 13 points against Akron and 10 against Malone, but struggled against URI going scoreless in 18 minutes.

"I need Andre to be more consistent." Waters said.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Cleveland State signs Clayborne, Lucien

Cleveland State coach Gary Waters officially announced the signing of Evan Clayborne and Andy Lucien on Thursday afternoon at his media gathering.

Clayborne, a 6-foot-7 shot blocker from Dayton, will play the four or five at CSU.

He made a name for himself with a strong AAU showing this summer with the Ohio Basketball Club.

Last year, Clayborne averaged just under a double-double with Dayton Dunbar High School. He will spend his senior year at Dayton Thurgood Marshall.

"Clayborne is an inside guy, he's athletic and will bring that athleticism and size inside for us," Waters said. "He fits our style [of play], that's what I like about him."

Clayborne should fit in well next year with CSU's press as both Dunbar and Marshall play a similiar style.

"He played mostly at the back of the press because he can alter shots," Waters said.

Lucien, a 6-foot-7 wing, will play mostly the stretch four at CSU, but will spend some time at the three.

He averaged 18.5 points and 8.0 rebounds as a junior last year at North Olmsted High School.

"Lucien is a really good shooter," Waters said. "He has perimeter skills at 6-7. He is a ferocious dunker and can play above the rim. We got to continue to work on his quickness and athleticism, and get him physically stronger. I think eventually, he will be able to help us."

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Cleveland State men's basketball gets first win of season in home opener

The Cleveland State men's basketball team earned its first victory of the season on Tuesday night, defeating Malone, 62-46, at the Wolstein Center.

The game was much closer then the final score would indicate.

It took CSU (1-1) nearly 24 minutes to find its offense. They trailed by one at the half, and four minutes into the second half, Malone (2-1) took a five point lead on Christian Graves' lay-up, which led to a timeout by CSU.

Coming out of the timeout, the Vikings looked like a completely different team. They used a 19-1 run to take a 29-24 deficit and turned it into a 43-30 advantage and never looked back.

The Vikings would extend the lead by as many as 18 in the second half

Defense keyed the decisive run, as CSU clamped down and held Malone without a field goal for nearly six minutes, while also causing the Pioneers to turn it over four times.

"We wanted to put more pressure on them [in the second half]. Keep the pressure on harder and harder," Vikings head coach Gary Waters said. "I think in the first 10 minutes, I think we turned them over nine times. I think that got us back in the game."

CSU also found its offensive stroke as Andre Yates, Vinny Zollo, Terrell Hales and Jeron Rogers each drained a three-pointer during that six minute stretch that helped CSU take control of the game. 

The Vikings shot 48.4 percent (15-of-31) in the second half, while holding the Pioneers to just eight field goals in the final 20 minutes.

"I thought we played hard in the second half," Waters said.

Demonte Flannigan did his best Anton Grady impersonation, posting career-highs in points (22) and rebounds (17), for his first collegiate double-double.

"That was not Anton-like, that was Demonte-like," said Waters. "I thought he did a good job scoring [inside]."

Flannigan showcased a variety of low post moves, scoring on hook shots and turnaround jumpers. He made nine of his 12 shots.

Zollo scored 10 of his 12 points in the second half, while Yates added 10.

"At halftime, I told Vinny, for us to have any chance this year, you have to bring it and hit some shots," said Waters. "In the second half, he went out and did a better job."

Malone was led by Mitchell Spotleson and Nate Sheppard, who each contributed 11 points.

CSU took an early 11-4 lead, then the offense stalled.

The Pioneers scored seven straight points to tie the game at 11-11, then a minute later, they took its first lead 14-13 on a three-pointer from Spotleson.

Malone lead by as many as five in the first half, but back to back baskets from Flannigan closed CSU within 23-22 at the intermission.

Flannigan was the lone bright spot for the Vikings in the first half. The Villa Angela-St. Joseph product kept the Vikings in the game in the opening half, scoring 14 of CSU's 22 points.

He shot 6-of-8 from the floor in the first half, while the rest of the team shot just 4-of-19.

No other Viking player had more then two points in the first 20 minutes.

Next up: The Vikings should get a tougher challenge on Saturday as they travel to Rhode Island for the opening game of the Cancun Challenge.

The Rams, who were picked to finish second in the Atlantic 10 preseason poll, are coming off a heart-breaking 58-55 loss to Valparaiso on Tuesday.

"They are going to be a tough foe," said Waters. "It's going to be a tough game at Rhode Island. I think our guys will compete."

Friday, November 13, 2015

Lucien Signs with Cleveland State

North Olmsted forward Andy Lucien signed with Cleveland State on Friday.

Lucien, a 6-foot-7 athletic wing, averaged 18.5 points and eight rebounds per game as a junior.

He also received offers from Ohio and UNC-Ashville.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Clayborne Signs with Cleveland State

Evan Clayborne, a one-time Buffalo recruit, signed with Cleveland State on Thursday afternoon.

A 6-foot-7 post player, Clayborne averaged 6.6 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 2.9 blocked shots as a junior for Dayton Dunbar High School.

Clayborne will play his senior season at Dayton Thurgood Marshall High School.

CSU is still waiting to receive a LOI from Andy Lucien.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Cleveland State suspends Myles Hamilton

Myles Hamilton's debut at Cleveland State will be delayed.

The team announced on Wednesday that Hamilton has been suspended indefinitely for a violation of team rules.

"[There's] a great possibility you won't see him all of November," Vikings head coach Gary Waters said at his media gathering on Wednesday.

Hamilton, a redshirt junior from Cleveland who starred at St. Edward High School, was expected to be the starting point guard this year.

A former walk-on, Hamilton transferred from Kennessaw State last year and sat out the 2014-15 season. He started 39 of 54 games with the Owls, averaging 6.0 points, 2.4 assists in 21.9 minutes in his two-year career at KSU.

Sophomore Kenny Carpenter and freshmen Rob Edwards will handle the point guard duties when the Vikings open the season on Saturday night against Akron in the Northeast Ohio Coaches vs. Cancer Doubleheader at Kent State.

"The biggest work in progress is at the point," Waters said. "That is probably going to take the whole year [to figure it out]. [Andre] Yates might have to see some time there."

Yates, CSU's top returning scorer from last season at 6.1 points per game, is expected to open the season as the starter at shooting guard.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Cleveland State Basketball set for public intrasquad scrimmages on Saturday

Cleveland State fans will get their first look at Kate Peterson Abiad and Gary Waters teams when the Vikings play its Green and White scrimmage games Saturday at the Wolstein Center as part of its Hallo-Hoops event.

Admission is free. Doors will open at 10 a.m.

The CSU women's team will scrimmage at 10:00 a.m. Peterson Abiad's squad, coming off its first WNIT appearance, welcomes back seven letterwinners, as well as four players who sat out last season due to injuries.

Making their debuts for Peterson Abiad's squad are freshmen Mariana Bautista (5-7, guard), Sierra Davidson (6-0, forward), Nicolete Newman (5-7, guard) and Emily Stoller (6-2, guard).

The CSU men, picked to finish seventh in the Horizon League, return four regulars from last year's team that won 19 games and advanced to the postseason for the sixth time in the last eight seasons.

Making their debuts for Waters squad are transfer guard Myles Hamilton (6.2 points, 17 starts at Kennessaw State), redshirt freshman Jonothan Janssen, and freshmen Jibri Blount (6-7, forward), Rob Edwards (6-4, guard) and Jeron Rogers (6-7, forward).

An autograph session, trick-or-treating, games, activities for kids 12 and under will follow the men's scrimmage inside the Wolstein Center concourse, starting at 11:30 a.m.

Vikings set to retire numbers of Cole, Klein: CSU announced on Friday that it will retire Norris Cole's and Kailey Klein's jersey numbers in a ceremony on Feb. 6.

Cole will have his jersey number 30 retired prior to the men's game against Oakland, while Klein will have her jersey number 23 retired at the half.

Both Cole and Klein made significant impacts on the Viking programs during their four-year careers.

A Dayton native and current member of the New Orleans Pelicans, Cole is the school's all-time leader in games played (140), consecutive games played (140) and minutes played (4,114), while ranking third in CSU history in scoring (1, 978).

Cole is best known for posting a 40-point, 20 rebound, nine assists game against Youngstown State as a senior. He is the only player in the in Horizon League history to earn Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year accolades in the same season when he earned both honors in 2011.

Klein, a Cherry, Ill. native, led the CSU women's basketball program to its only two NCAA tournament appearances (2008, 10). She finished her career as the all-time leading scorer in CSU history in points (2,140), free throws made (605) and free throws attempted (762).

Klein is best known for her Horizon League tournament performance as a senior. After being snubbed the Player of the Year, Klein then went out and set the Horizon League tournament record, scoring 80 points in three games en route to tournament MVP.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Maitre de-commits from Cleveland State; Lucien commits

Cleveland State received some good news and bad news on the recruiting trail.

Senior point guard Richardson Maitre of West Oaks Academy (FL) de-committed from the Vikings on Tuesday, as first reported by SourceHoops.com.

An hour later, 2016 North Olmsted forward Andy Lucien committed to the Vikings after taking an official visit to the downtown campus earlier in the day.

Lucien, a 6-foot-7 forward, also had offers from Ohio and UNC Asheville.

"I always wanted to go there throughout this recruiting process and even before that when I was a kid," Lucien told PrepHoopsOhio.com. "They really want to help me become the best basketball player I can be. It's a perfect fit."

Lucien averaged 18.5 points and eight rebounds per game last year as a junior.

Maitre committed to CSU on Sept. 28. The Montreal, Canada native chose the Vikings over offers from Middle Tennessee State, UTEP, Quinnipiac, Bradley, Sam Houston State, and New Mexico State.

Waters told the media last week that CSU could sign up to three recruits for the class of 2016.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Cleveland State lands first basketball commit in 2016 class

Cleveland State landed its first commitment in the Class of 2016 as 6-foot-2 guard Richardson Maitre pledged to head coach Gary Waters on Monday, according to multiple media reports.

Maitre attends West Oaks Academy in Orlando.

The Montreal, Canada native is a bit under the radar in the class of 2016. He made a name for himself this summer playing for the Brookwood Elite AAU program where he shined at a number of top-tier showcases.

At the Adidas Gauntlet in Atlanta, Maitre averaged 13.9 points per game and had an 18:10 assist to turnover ratio.

Maitre also received offers from Middle Tennessee State, UTEP, Quinnipiac, Bradley, Sam Houston State, and New Mexico State.

He took an official visit to CSU on Sept. 11 and also visited UTEP and Bradley.

NorthPoleHoops.com ranks Maitre as the 17th best prospect in Canada's class of 2016.

He is the second Brookwood Elite alum to commit to the Vikings in the past two months. In August, Daniel Levitt, a freshmen guard from Montreal, announced he will walkon to the CSU program this fall.

The Vikings are also recruiting Brookwood Elite's 6-foot-5 wing Max Boursiquot, who holds offers from CSU, Albany, Binghampton, and Bryant.

Photo: NorthPoleHoops.com

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Cleveland State Basketball Announces 2015-16 Non-Conference Schedule

The Cleveland State men's basketball team released its complete 2015-16 schedule on Wednesday.

The 31-game schedule had been coming together over the course of the summer, but with the official unveiling, we now know the Vikings' final two non-conference opponents – Malone and Cedarville.

Early season highlights include two games at the Q, two games in Cancun and road contests at Rhode Island and Maryland.

The biggest surprise was that Gary Waters elected not to have an exhibition game, instead CSU will have two closed-door scrimmages against non-Division I programs.

The toughest stretch of CSU's non-conference schedule comes in November as five of their six games are away from the Wolstein Center.

CSU will open the season in Kent, Ohio. The Vikings will face Akron on Nov. 14 at Kent State's M.A.C. Center as part of the Coaches vs. Cancer Doubleheader, with Kent battling Youngstown State in the other game.

Three days later, the Vikings will host Malone in its lone home game in November, before hitting the road for five straight.

They close out November with four games in the Cancun Challenge.

The Vikings open the Cancun Challenge on the road at Rhode Island on Nov. 21, then head to Cancun, Mexico for two more. CSU will face Rider on Nov. 24, and then they will play either Houston Baptist or South Dakota State the next day.

CSU concludes the Cancun Challenge at Maryland on Nov. 28. The game will be televised on the Big 10 Network.

The month of December is much kinder to the Vikings who will play five of its final seven non-conference games at home.

They open December on the road at Toledo, then return home for two straight at the Q, hosting Kent State on Dec. 5 and Ohio on Dec. 12.

After a road game at Loyola (Ill.), CSU closes out the non-conference season with three straight at the Wolstein Center. Belmont, an NCAA tournament team a year ago, visits Cleveland on Dec. 19, followed by Bowling Green (Dec. 23) and Cedarville (Dec. 29).

The Horizon League announced it conference schedule on Sept. 3.