Mounties continue streak, jump to second in NAIA poll

By Casey Kellas, The Observer December 05, 2012 02:36 pm

The Eastern Oregon University men’s basketball team is riding high.

And after a 2-0 weekend that improved the Mountaineers to 14-0, the team has its highest-ever ranking in the latest NAIA top-25 coaches poll.

EOU made the jump from No. 4 to No. 2 Tuesday, receiving 300 points and one first-place vote.

Cardinal Stritch (Wisconsin) comes in at No.1 for the first time in school history.

The Wolves are 10-0 and tallied 11-of-12 first-place votes to finish with 312 points in the poll.

In a bit of irony, it was Cardinal Stritch that ended the Mountaineers’ season last year in the first round of the NAIA Division II national tournament.

The Wolves had a come-from-behind 63-60 victory over EOU.

Now the teams find themselves next to each other in the national poll.

Indiana Wesleyan improved two positions to third with 287 points. 

Previous top-ranked Northwood (Fla.) falls to No. 4 after a loss to then-No. 8 Embry-Riddle (Fla.) on Dec. 1. With the upset win, Embry-Riddle jumps up into the top five with 272 points.

Despite losing to the Mountaineers Saturday, Warner Pacific remains at No. 13, while fellow Cascade Collegiate Conference members Southern Oregon (No. 16) and Northwest (No. 20) hold solid from last week.

The Mountaineers are off this weekend before traveling to Ashland to face off with the Raiders Dec. 14.

EOU will play unranked Oregon Tech Dec. 15 in Klamath Falls.