SHERIDAN — Not a minute had gone by in a game Wednesday against No. 8 Sheridan College before Northwest College head coach Dawud Abdur-Rahkman burned his first timeout. Another minute had not passed until he used his second.
The Trappers’ head coach simply had zero answers in how to effectively defend the Generals, and that persisted for 40 minutes inside the Bruce Hoffman Golden Dome. Sheridan eased to an 84-53 victory to improve to 24-1 on the season and 9-0 in Region IX play.
“When you hold a team to 53 points defensively, and you out-rebound them 53-29, it’s something you got to be happy with,” SC head coach Matt Hammer said. “But at the same time, there’s still things we need to work on.”
Hammer didn’t care for the 19 turnovers or the couple times his team let up, but, for the most part, he was pleased. SC’s head coach has been particularly pleased with how his team has defended recently.
In the Generals’ last three conference games, they’ve not allowed a team to shoot better than 35 percent from the floor.
“What I think they’re doing really well is executing the game plan,” Hammer said. “… Every scout they’ve been doing really, really well on. Our scouts are common actions, but they’re also personnel — who you can help off of a lot and who you can’t help off. We switch a lot, so you can’t just know one guy’s game. You’ve got to know every one because you’ll be guarding a lot of different guys. So I’m proud to see that.”
Northwest only connected on 30 percent (20 of 67) of its field goals as a team and went just 5 of 30 from beyond the 3-point line and had only one player reach double figures.
Sheridan, on the other hand, shot 50 percent (32 of 64) from the floor, and six players scored in double figures led by AJ Bramah who boasted a double-double consisting of 16 points and 14 rebounds.
“We played well defensively as a team, and we have a really unselfish team,” Sheridan’s Sasa Vuksanovic said. “… This would be one of the more complete games (of the season).”
Vuksanovic scored 13 off the bench and grabbed eight rebounds. In four of his last seven games, the Sheridan College sophomore has scored in double figures.
Vuksanovic attributes his strong play of late to his level of comfort within his role. In his homeland of Serbia, Vuksanovic always started. In Sheridan, he is tasked with spelling Bramah and Cam Reece, and when Vuksanovic is out out of the game, he’s watching how those two play and how the other team is defending them and how he can play most effectively when his number is called.
“He’s as steady as a ship on smooth water,” Hammer said. “You get the same out of him no matter what. And what I love about him is when he gets it inside, when he gets a post touch, he’s so calm and patient with it. He doesn’t try and overdo it.”
Javary Christmas also came off the bench and tallied 12 points. Adham Eleeda added 12 points, while Josh Bagley and Sean Sutherlin each scored 10 points.
The Generals remain and home and host Laramie County Community College Saturday at 4 p.m. SC downed LCCC 81-61 in Cheyenne Jan. 19.
Northwest College…28 25 — 53
Sheridan College….48 36 — 84
Northwest College — Grantsaan 12; Howell 9; Torbert 5; Webster 5; Feliz 5; Fugett Jr. 4; Brown 4; Okongo 4; Dehon 3; McArthur 2
Sheridan College — Bramah 16; Vuksanovic 13; Christmas 12; Eleeda 12; Bagley 10; Sutherlin 10; Reece 7; Lewis 3; Murphey 1
Northwest College 29 (Grantsaan 7); Sheridan College 53 (Bramah 14)
Northwest College 10 (Fugett Jr. 5); Sheridan College 19 (Bagley 5)