On Nov. 22 the Bellevue College men’s basketball team began their 2014-2015 season. Last year they had won the North Region title they look to learn from that experience and return as champions. Consisting of five sophomores and six freshmen, the Bulldogs have an equal balance of new and old players that can provide the younger players with guidance. Coached by Jeremy Eggers, who will be entering his 12th season as head coach of the Bellevue College team, is coming off of a successful season in which both the women’s and men’s teams won region titles. According to his staff biography on the sport department’s website: “It is believed to be the only time in NWAC history that’s it’s been done.”
Including last season the, Bellevue Basketball team has been accustomed to success, qualifying for the NWAC championships in ten of Egger’s 11 seasons, and have captured the North region title six of the past 10 years. He has also been named “North Region Coach of the Year” twice. Alongside assistant coaches Marcus Fermon, Tom Eggers and Luke Hammond, he looks to lead the Bulldogs to another successful season.
The Bulldogs hosted Clark College from Vancouver, WA. Unfortunately they did not get the start that they would’ve liked, losing at the last moment 72-73. Coach Eggers stated “I was very pleased, we only lost with an overtime buzzer-beater, but I thought that Clark played very well, they are top team in the NWAC, but the way we battled after losing two starters early on to keep us in the game was huge.” Both teams started cold with Bellevue shooting only 33.3 percent from the field and Clark shooting 27.3 percent. It was Bellevue’s three-point shooting (38.5 percent to Clarks 14.3 percent) that gave them the advantage going in to half time 29-23. In the second half, Bellevue and Clark improved their shooting, with 46 and 39 percent respectively. The same aspect of the game that gave the Bulldogs the advantage in the first half helped Clark to force overtime with them shooting 83.3 percent from behind the three-point line and ultimately it was a three point shot which won the game for Clark in overtime.
Despite losing their first game the Bulldogs are pretty confident with the way this season will turn out. As sophomore point guard Jalen Ward stated he “was very happy with how we developed throughout game 1 starting off slow but bouncing back and heating up and taking the game to overtime.” The Bulldogs did face a couple injuries in the game and have been hit by a couple more in practice, coach Eggers is not too concerned for his team’s performance, “we have a deep team this year full of guys ready to step up when given the opportunity.” Coach Eggers said the players injured in the game “should be fine, we had some more injuries in practice that we could be without for the next few weeks.”
Ward stated “we know it’s a long season and our main focus is staying together and keeping on top of everything until we get them back healthy and then we should be great.” The bulldogs started their first holiday tourney against Green River on Nov. 28.