By: Andrew Gavin (@GBGavin)
GREEN BAY, Wis.
(GreenBayPhoenix.com) - Freshman Keifer Sykes (Chicago, Ill.) was
tremendous Tuesday night in leading Green Bay to a 71-65 victory over Youngstown
State. In tallying 17 points and 10
assists in 37 minutes without committing a turnover, Sykes became the first
Green Bay player with 10 or more assists in nearly three years and the first
player to reach double figures in assists without a turnover in more than five.
Sykes also combined with junior Brennan Cougill (Sioux
City, Iowa) to do something that had never been done before in Green Bay
history in the Division I era. The duo became the first Green Bay teammates to
record double-doubles with both points and assists and points and rebounds in
the same game since the program made the switch to Division I in 1981-82.
The performance for Sykes was just another statement
in what has become a freshman campaign worthy of strong consideration for
Horizon League Newcomer of the Year and all-conference honors. Sykes turned 18
on Dec. 30, and since becoming an adult has been playing at a level well beyond
In 12 games since his birthday, Sykes has reached
double figures 11 times and is averaging 14.8 points per game. Even more
remarkable have been the increase in assists and decrease in turnovers coinciding
with the scoring. The point guard has averaged 4.7 assists and committed just
26 turnovers during that stretch. To boot, he is shooting 53.5 percent from the
Sykes is the only freshman ranked among the Horizon
League's scoring and assist leaders. In league play, the Chicago native is
highly ranked among all players. He ranks eighth in scoring (13.1 ppg), third
in assists (4.1) and first in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.1-to-1) and is also
the lone guard ranked among leaders in field goal percentage (52.3%).
- Green Bay
improved to 10-2 at home this season and 55-15 at the Resch Center since
2007-08. The Phoenix is 20-6 at home under head coach Brian Wardle.
- Green Bay is now
7-2 at home this season in games decided by 10 points or less.
- Seventeen of the
team's 25 games have been decided by 10 points or less.
- The Phoenix has
won four of its last six games since losing at Youngstown State on Jan. 22.
- The win improved
Green Bay to 24-7 all-time against YSU, including 15-1 in Green Bay.
- Green Bay had 19
assists, one shy of its season high of 20 set at Valparaiso.
- The Phoenix had
five players make at least one three-pointer for the sixth time this season.
- With three
blocks, Green Bay moved just five blocks shy of breaking its own team record
for blocks in a season.
- Sykes and junior
Brennan Cougill both recorded double-doubles against Youngstown State. It
marked only the third time in the Division I era but second time under Brian
Wardle that Green Bay had two double-doubles in the same game.
- It was also the
first time in the Division I era that a points/assists double-double and a
points/rebounds double-double occurred in the same game.
- Freshman Keifer
Sykes recorded a career-high 10 assists.
- He became the
first Green Bay player to get 10 assists in a game since Rahmon Fletcher had 10
assists against Vermont on March 18, 2009.
- Sykes is also the
Green Bay player to get 10 assists in a Horizon League since Ryan Evanochko had
10 on Feb. 3, 2007.
- Junior Brennan
Cougill recorded his third double-double of the season with 17 points and 11
- Cougill led the
team in rebounding for the 10th time this season.
- He also tied his
career high with five assists.
- Sophomore Alec
Brown recorded his eighth consecutive double-figure scoring effort with 14
points and nine rebounds and has 10 points or more in 20 games this season and
38 in his career.
- Brown has
recorded a block in 50 of 57 games in his career and 23 of 25 games this
- The sophomore has
a school-record 74 blocks this season and 141 blocks in his career.
- Sophomore Kam Cerroni hit two three-pointers against Youngstown State, extending his streak
of games with a three-pointer made to 14.
- Cerroni continues
to lead the Horizon League in three-point percentage, shooting 46.2 percent
- The sophomore is
also second in the league in free-throw percentage in league play, hitting
32-of-37 for 86.5 percent.
- Senior Steve Baker has made 6-of-10 three-pointers in the past two games and now ranks third
in the league in three-point percentage (.429, 30-70).
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