OGDEN — Sacramento State is all too familiar with the Beehive State this season.
The Hornets (8-7, 3-4) have already secured wins against Utah — a 74-71 comeback win at the Huntsman Center — and Southern Utah.
Weber State (12-3, 7-0) will look to buck the trend Saturday at the Dee Events Center at 7 p.m.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for their program. I think they’ve got a real good ball club. I think they’re really balanced,” WSU coach Randy Rahe said. “They’ve got a monster inside that’s hard to guard, their perimeter guys can all score and they defend the heck out of you. I’ve got the utmost respect for their program and I know Saturday night is going to be an absolute grinder. It’s going to be a dogfight.”
The Wildcats have won 10 straight against Sacramento State, one of three teams in the Big Sky above .500, and are 18-1 all-time in Ogden. The Hornets have fallen on harder times as of late, specifically the unexpected 60-59 loss against Idaho State on Thursday.
“That zone up at Idaho State can screw anybody up,” Rahe said. “I’m sure that’s what probably got them a little bit.”
John Dickson, a 6-foot-6 senior forward, leads the Hornets with 14.2 points per game while averaging slightly fewer than six rebounds. He’s joined by Mikh McKinney (12.9 ppg), Dylan Garrity (11.8 ppg) and Konner Veteto (11.3 ppg), who all average double digit scoring figures.
“They’ve got some good wins and gone on the road and won some games, too. They beat Utah, they beat Eastern Washington. It’s going to be a tough game for us,” Rahe said. “A lot of people that were playing them early in the season felt they were one of the top three teams in our league — I still think they probably are.”
Weber State, after leading the nation in free throw percentage last season, is returning to form from the line. The ‘Cats through the first 11 games bricked 65 percent of their attempts, but over the course of the last four have hovered above 80 percent at the stripe.
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Catch the ‘Cats on the air
Sacramento State (8-7, 3-4) at Weber State (12-3, 7-0)
Saturday, 7 p.m.
Dee Events Center, Ogden