vs South Dakota State

December 18, 2010

Wait not so bad this time for WMU's Alex Wolf
By Graham Couch | Kalamazoo Gazette

Erik Holladay | Kalamazoo Gazette

KALAMAZOO — Alex Wolf spent seasons waiting for a chance. So, he said Saturday, a few games on the bench is something he can handle. The Western Michigan University senior walk-on had fallen out of the rotation at shooting guard, playing a total of three minutes during the Broncos’ last two games. In Saturday’s 77-74 win over South Dakota State, Wolf was called upon for a bigger role. He scored five points in nine minutes.

“You’ve always got to stay on your toes, you’ve always got to be ready,” the 6-footer from Parchment said. “I was sitting there waiting and ready for years, so just a few games, that’s not too long for me.” Wolf hit a 3-pointer just seconds after checking in, a pass back from Mikey Douglas, with Wolf wide open on the right side. “He found me wide open,” Wolf said. “It does a lot for your confidence when you come in the game and right off the bat contribute.” Confidence, or lack thereof, is one of the reasons for Wolf’s reduced role — along with the play of Demetrius Ward and David Brown at his position. Wolf had made just 1-of-8 3-point attempts during his last four games.

“Where Alex ran into problems is he developed a little hitch in his shot,” Broncos coach Steve Hawkins said. “Alex’s worth to us is somebody who really understands our system and has the ability to knock down open shots. “It’s not just the last two or three games, it had been in practice. There was just something off.” Hawkins said Wolf’s senior engineering class load has forced him to miss a ton of practice, though Wolf was able to correct the hitch this past week.

“I saw the ball drop, so I had more confidence putting him out there in that situation,” Hawkins said. “And defensively, I felt like he was going to be in the right position, which I thought we needed more than anything else.” QUOTING STEVE HAWKINS: “About 18, 19 minutes to go in the second half, we had a 19-point lead and I saw some of the people in the stands start to leave, and I thought, ‘This is going to hurt our concessions right now and we can’t have that.’ So I told the guys to ease up a little bit, let these guys back into it, get them back in their seats, let’s sell a few more hot dogs, some more soda, make Coke happy.’ And they did a good job of that. They listened. This group listens well.” SOPHOMORE WALK-ON DAN LONEY made his first non-garbage time appearance of the season, playing the final 2:21 of the first half while most of the other Broncos big men sat in foul trouble. Loney had two points, knocking down two free throws, and two rebounds in four minutes. “You know, it’s a one-possession game,” teammate Alex Wolf said. “Every little minute anybody gave us was huge. For Dan to step in there, get those two free throws, get a board, box out, play tough ‘D’ ... that’s huge. He had no idea if he was going to play whatsoever and he jumped right in. He was ready to go.”

(CLICK above for Alex Wolf video highlights)

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