UVU Men’s basketball: Biggest game of season Thursday night

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UVU fans and New Mexico State players fighting after the Wolverines knocked off the Aggies in 2014. Photo courtesy of Gabi Campbell

Two years ago, Holton Hunsaker led the Utah Valley University men’s basketball team to a victory over New Mexico State. It caused a lot of frustration for the Aggies, leading to a brawl between players and fans after Wolverine fans stormed the court. However, UVU walked off the court that day one step closer to clinching their first and only WAC regular season championship.

On Thursday night, the Aggies come to town once again to start off the conference season. The WAC defending champions are led by Pascal Siakam, who averages 24 points per game and 12 rebounds per game and is a potential NBA first-round draft pick. New Mexico State was picked to win the WAC in the preseason coaches poll but have struggled to an 8-7 overall record so far this season.

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Senior Jaden Jackson hopes to get UVU off on the right foot as conference play begins. Photo Courtesy of Julie Ostler

If you want to know how big this game is to UVU, look no further than the 24-hour dribble party that starts at 7 p.m. tonight. The party gets started at the Alumni House and then is followed up with a Coach’s rally at 10 p.m., where those in attendance will get dinner courtesy of UVU Head Coach Mark Pope.

The rally will then be followed by a night of fun. A dunking contest, scooter races, human hungry hippo, dew pong, lip-sync battle, and a movie are all part of the festivities throughout the night in the P.E. Gym. And then beginning at 7 a.m. there will be all-day activities in the Zone, including the prize wheel, games, music, and give-aways.

To get everyone even more excited leading up to the game, the MAWL is hosting a tailgate party at the UCCU Center at 5:30 p.m. Thursday prior to the game.

And then we get to the game. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. in the UCCU Center and senior guards Marcel Davis and Jaden Jackson are looking to open the conference season on a high note. Davis recorded a double-double with 20 points and 11 rebounds on Saturday night against San Diego Christian. Jackson chipped in 19 points for the Wolverines in the win.

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Mark Pope wants to take UVU to the next level and a win over New Mexico State would be a good start. Photo courtesy of Gabi Campbell

Mark Pope said that he wanted to take the UVU basketball program to the next level. Starting with the party at the Alumni House on Wednesday night and ending with a Wolverine victory on Thursday night would be a step in the right direction.

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