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Idaho BracketBuster: Monson, Long Beach

Idaho will play host to Long Beach State on Feb. 20 in the eighth annual BracketBuster.

The game, announced Monday, will be the second half a Vandals doubleheader. The Idaho women will play a Western Athletic Conference game against New Mexico State at 3 p.m. The men will follow at 5:30.

Long Beach State (10-11, 4-4 in the Big West Conference) is coached by second-year head coach Dan Monson, an Idaho alum and former Gonzaga coach. His father, Don, was a successful former Vandals coach.

The 49ers have wins over UCLA and Utah State and losses to Clemson, Texas, Kansas and Duke, all who have been ranked this season.

“I’ve seen them play a couple times on tape this year, and they’re very athletic, very talented and have played an unbelievably tough schedule,” Idaho coach Don Verlin said. “I think they’re one of the most talented teams in the Big West Conference.”

Card picks Seattle

North Idaho College’s Taylor Stevens has accepted a scholarship offer to play at Seattle University next year, NIC announced.

Stevens is a 6-foot-7 sophomore wing from Seattle. He is averaging 8.2 points per game this season and is fourth in the Scenic West Athletic Conference in 3-point field goal percentage at 39 percent.

Whits ranked 10th

Whitworth University, riding a 16-game win streak that is the second-longest active streak in NCAA Division III, has jumped to 10th from 15th in this week’s poll.

It’s the highest ranking of the season for the Pirates, who are 17-2, 10-0 in the Northwest Conference.

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