Team Will Re-Think and Re-Group After Drop in Polls

January 28, 2009

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Head Coach Jeff Drinkwine knew the team would drop this week in the NAIA Div. II polls, but dropping 15 spots from last weeks #10 placing was a shock to the second year coach. A slip out of the top 20 is dangerous for Evergreen, a team that craves a spot in the NAIA Div. II Tournament after being so close last season.

The teams 12-7 record may explain their drop in the polls as well as the January 19th overtime loss to Southern Oregon, a team ranks 7th in the Cascade Conference. The latter being a make up game from a weather postponned home December date.

For that game Evergreen acquiesced to SOU's wishes to meet in a neutral location and traveled to Eugene, Oregon. The Monday scheduled game left the men's team without starter John Levi III who could not get time off from his coursework.

Last Thursday the teams had to turn around and make the long trip to Klamath Falls, Oregon losing to #5 Oregon Tech Friday night but avenging their loss to SOU in Ashland Saturday.

Despite these setbacks Drinkwine does not want to make excuses.

"We have to play better and look ahead". Adding, "Why focus on where the polls say we should be?"

This weekend Evergreen (8-4 CCC, 12-7) will have their mind set on defeating two teams at home. Concordia University (2-10 CCC, 7-14), a team that has played better than their record, defeated Warner Pacific earlier this season. WPC is #2 in the CCC and #13 in NAIA Div. II. Corban College (4-8 CCC, 8-13) will be in the Greenhouse Saturday. The Warriors have been strong lately.

Drinkwine acknowledges the weekends competition. "Both of these teams are good. We cannot underestimate anybody in our Conference"

With Evergreen currently at #4, the Cascade Conference has three teams with 8-4 records, including the Geoducks.

The conference has four teams ranked in the NAIA Div. II top 25 and one team recieving votes in Monday's poll.

Weekend games will be following the women with 7:30 tip-offs scheduled.