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Eastern Washington - Basketball

Eagles hit road bound for Montana

(Photo: File / EWU Athletics) (Photo: File / EWU Athletics)
  • Eastern Washington - BasketballEagles hit road bound for MontanaMore>>

  • Eastern Washington

    Lady Eagles prepare for Montana schools at home

    Lady Eagles prepare for Montana schools at home

    (Photo: EWU Athletics)(Photo: EWU Athletics)
    The Eastern Washington University women's basketball team got off to a great start in Big Sky Conference play on Dec. 31 with a road win at Sacramento State. But....More >>
    The Eastern Washington University women's basketball team got off to a great start in Big Sky Conference play on Dec. 31 with a road win at Sacramento State. But to continue it, the Eagles will have to get through both Montana and Montana State this Friday and Saturday.More >>

by EWU Athletics

Just when it got off the road, the Eastern Washington University men's basketball team is back on it.

The Eagles play at Montana on Friday (Jan. 8) at 6:05 p.m. Pacific time before heading further to the east to take on Montana State on Sunday (Jan. 10) at 1:05 p.m. Both games will be broadcast live in the Spokane area on 1050-AM, and Sunday's game will be televised regionally on Altitude Sports and Entertainment. Both games will also be broadcast via www.bigskytv.org.

Eastern put a five-game losing streak to rest with a 79-75 victory over Sacramento State last Thursday (Dec. 31) to improve to 5-10 overall and 1-1 in the league. But that was EWU's first home game since defeating Seattle University 100-97 in overtime on Dec. 12. That was also the last time the Eagles tasted victory as all five of EWU's setbacks during its losing streak came on the road.

"It seemed like it was two years since we played at home," said Eastern head coach Kirk Earlywine following the Sac State win. "I know it was just under three weeks since we played Seattle University, but it seemed like forever. Just that one road trip we had was nine days, and that's a long time to be gone. I'll take the blame for that -- I'm the one that scheduled it. Shame on me, but I won't let that happen again."

In fact, Eastern is going a full month from Dec. 13 to Jan. 14 with just one home game on the schedule. This week, Eastern plays at a Montana team currently 10-6 overall and 1-3 in the Big Sky, and a Bobcats team 8-6 overall and 3-1 in the league. Collectively they are 13-2 at home while the Eagles are 1-8 on the road.

"It's a grind," said Eastern head coach Kirk Earlywine. "I don't think it's a physical grind near as much as it's a mental grind. All you have to do is look and listen to NBA players. They are chartering flights, staying in the nicest hotels and get room service, and they talk about what a grind it is if they are gone for nine or 10 days. And those are grown men and it's the only thing they have to do. So when you are asking college players this young to do that, there is no question it's very difficult."

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