On Dec, 22-24 The Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic will take place at the Stan Sheriff Center in Hawaii. This past Saturday, college basketball fans got a taste of what the tournament could entail.
The Boise State Broncos (8-2) took on the St. Mary’s Gaels (8-0) at Taco Bell Arena. Junior guard Derrick Marks and company fell to the Gaels, 82-74.
Marks and Elorriaga led the way for the Broncos, with more than half of the Broncos points, combining for 42 of the Broncos 74 points.
“We just came out a little slow,” Elorriaga said. “It’s just something you can’t do against a good team like that and it’s something we’ll have to learn from.”
Saint Mary’s could have vastly helped the Broncos RPI come NCAA tournament time, if the Broncos become eligible. But, luckily for the Broncos, who have lost two games in a row after starting the season 8-0, they could get the Gaels in the second round of the Diamond Head Classic.
When head coach Leon Rice was asked if he wanted to see Saint Mary’s again in the Broncos upcoming tournament, he did not hesitate to assure everyone that they are not looking ahead.
“I mean, it’s all Hawaii. That’s the focus right now,” Rice said. “If we get them, we get them. Right now we’re worried about a good Hawaii team.”
Rice’s Broncos will take on the Hawaii Warriors (6-2), who are currently first in the Big West standings, while Saint Mary’s find themselves matched up against the Gamecocks of South Carolina.
Though the Broncos fell to the Gaels, Elorriaga and company knows what they need to work on to come out on top if the two meet again.
“We have some holes to fill and we know we have to come out quicker,” Elorriaga said. “That would have been a good RPI win for us and we know we have to play much better than we did tonight.”
Broncos will need strong RPI wins to help solidify them as a 2014 NCAA tournament team. They could get a lot of help in that category at the Diamond Head Classic.
The Gaels would certainly help the Broncos RPI if the two were to meet again. The Broncos could potentially play the No. 17 Iowa State Cyclones (8-0) out of the Big Twelve Conference for the tournament title.