The Wright State men’s basketball team didn’t take long to turn its attention to next season after Wednesday’s 81-69 loss to Santa Clara in the semifinals of the College Basketball Invitational.
Inside the locker room at the Nutter Center, coach Billy Donlon touched on the main theme for the season ahead in his postgame speech.
“What Coach Donlon said was pretty significant,” junior Matt Vest said. “We’re going to go from the hunter to the hunted. That’s just his personality. He talked about how early we’re going to get started this offseason. We’re all excited about that. Everyone is trying to improve.”
The Raiders finished 23-13 in 2012-13. They had no seniors, so the team that played Wednesday night should be similar to what you will see when the season starts in November.
Throw in Cole Darling, who missed the last 10 games with an injury, Butler transfer Chrishawn Hopkins and Stephen Davis, a 6-foot-7 freshman who wasn’t eligible this season, and the Raiders could be the favorite in the Horizon League.
“They’ve got to be hungrier this year than they were a year ago,” Donlon said. “That was my message. I told them I’m proud of them for the season they had. We had a good season. Great seasons are defined with championships. The two areas that got exposed (Wednesday) were we were not as skilled as they are. Some of that is (Santa Clara’s) age. And our size. Those two things we’ve got to improve. Size and skill. That comes with time and work.”
Baseball: Senior catcher Garrett Gray was named Horizon League Batter of the Week. He hit .429 with six RBIs in a three-game series against Valparaiso. Wright State (8-12) took two out of three to even its record in the league at 3-3.
It was the second straight week a Raider won the award. Junior outfielder Kieston Greene was honored for the week ending March 17. He hit .500 with seven RBIs in four games.
The Raiders will host their second annual Wright State Baseball vs. Cancer game at 2 p.m. Saturday in the series finale against Youngstown State. The Raiders will shave their heads in support of children fighting cancer and will collect money for the Vs. Cancer Foundation and the Dayton Children’s Medical Center. Fans can also have their heads shaved for $5.
Tennis: Junior Hayden Joblin was named the Horizon League Player of the Week. He was 2-0 in both No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles last week. The Raiders (11-6) beat Illinois-Chicago 4-3 on Saturday and Valparaiso 7-0 on Sunday in their first two league matches.
Softball: The Raiders lost 2-0 and 6-4 at Marshall on Wednesday, falling to 3-18. Their three-game series at Cleveland State this weekend has been moved to Wright State because of snow in Cleveland. It begins at 5 p.m. today.