OGDEN — Weber State saw firsthand just how good and improved Northern Colorado is this season when the two teams played in Greeley, Colo., last weekend.
The Wildcats don't have to wait long for the rematch. Weber State hosts the Bears in a game tonight that will be televised by the Altitude Network.
"They were as good as we expected them to be and more," said Wildcats coach Randy Rahe. "They have a lot of veterans, so they don't get rattled. I expect this game to be every bit as intense this week."
The Bears handled the Wildcats, 65-46, last Saturday to win their seventh straight game. Northern Colorado is atop the Big Sky standings, leading second-place Montana by a half game.
Northern Colorado built a 43-20 halftime lead against Weber State and held the Wildcats to 34.1 percent shooting. Scott Bamforth was the only Wildcat to score in double figures, as he had 19 points. The Bears' biggest lead in the game was 27 points. They also collected 11 more rebounds than Weber State.
Weber State held Northern Colorado leading scorer Devon Beitzel to just five points, but point guard Elliott Lloyd had 16 points.
Rahe gave his players three days off after last week's loss to try and regroup and reenergize for the second half of league play. The Wildcats are four games behind Northern Colorado, and a third straight Big Sky regular-season championship is pretty much out of the question.
But the Wildcats, who are 4-5 since star guard Damian Lillard was lost for the season, will keep fighting. They've only lost at home once this season — to No. 9-ranked BYU — and will certainly give Northern Colorado a tough test tonight.
"This is a great group of players," Rahe said. "They played a little tired (last week) but they never gave up. They hung in there and battled to the very end. I expect they will have a lot of energy (tonight)."
Wildcats on the air
N. Colorado (11-7, 7-0 Big Sky) at Weber State (9-9, 3-4)
Today, 7:05 p.m.
Dee Events Center,
TV: Altitude Radio: