Flora leads Redhawks to back-to-back wins

Losing three of its first four games to open the 2014-15 schedule, Seattle U was in desperate need of a second scorer to step up and establish himself as a credible sidekick to star point guard Isiah Umipig. Over the Redhawks' last two games, a pair of convincing victories at local sites, the team appears to have found that man in Jarell Flora.

The 6-3 shooting guard from Bremerton, Wash., a fifth-year senior who has been in the program for almost all of head coach Cameron Dollar's tenure on First Hill, scored 23 points in Saturday's 70-58 win over Cal State Northridge at KeyArena. Then Flora led SU with 16 points in Monday's 72-33 rout of Pacific Lutheran at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. In those two outings, Flora shot 14-of-31 from the field 9-of-20 from three-point range.

Before the PLU game, Flora was named WAC Player of the Week for his performance against Cal State Northridge, in which he also had nine rebounds and hit five threes.

Against PLU -- when Seattle U (3-3) was technically the road team at a gym that is considered their home away from home -- junior center Jack Crook had 14 points and 12 rebounds, while junior guard Manroop Clair chipped in 12 points, five rebounds and two steals off the bench. Umipig, who'd outscored Flora by one point in the Cal State Northridge game, was relatively quiet with 11 points on 4-of-10 shooting against the Lutes.

It was the Redhawks' defense, however, that really stood out at ShoWare. Seattle U limited PLU to 23 percent shooting from the field (12-of-52) and eight percent from deep (2-of-23), while no player on the Lutes scored more than six points individually. The Redhawks outrebounded the Lutes 47-27.

"As a team, we keep getting better," Dollar said after Monday's win. "We had a mature effort, especially on the defensive end, where their moving the ball around forced us to be patient and not try to play a different game. Offensively, we stuck to our ball movement and fundamentals, and we were able to be successful."

Seattle U's next game is their first real road game of the season, on Dec. 4 at UC Santa Barbara. The Gauchos boast star center Alan Williams, who was featured in Sports Illustrated last week and labeled "the most productive big man in the country." The 6-8 senior is averaging 19.8 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.8 blocks this season. Williams dropped 27 points and eight boards on SU when UCSB defeated the Redhawks 86-70 last season in Seattle.

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