Emily Johansen was awarded Big Sky Player of the Week after her stunning performance against Idaho State last series. She went five for nine (.556) with eight runs batted in and four home runs. She ended the series with a .714 on-base percentage and 1.889 slugging percentage.
The Viks had a rain delay on Friday and planned to host their last series of the regular season against Weber State University the next day, on Saturday. The series ended up being rained out and canceled, but the Viks still recognised their seniors from the class of 2020 whose season was cut short due to COVID-19 for Senior Day. The seniors recognised were Darian Lindsey, Riley Casper, Ashley Doyle, Alexis Morrison, Jessica Flanagan and Alexxis Ponce.
The Viks ended their regular season 26-16 (10-5) and Weber State ended theirs 35-10 (13-1). The Viks now await the Big Sky tournament. The Arizona Wildcats will host in Ogden, Utah because of winning the regular season for the second straight year.
Portland State is currently in third place in the Big Sky standings, behind Weber State and Sacramento State. The Viks won the tournament last year and punched a ticket to the NCAA playoffs in which they played University of Washington and Seattle University.
Alumnus Ashley Bolton returned to the Park Blocks as an assistant coach, under head coach Chelsey Gregg. Bolton was the 2019 Big Sky MVP, averaging 14.3 points per game and eight rebounds per game. In her career, Bolton was a three-time All-Big Sky Second Team selection as well as a captain for all three seasons—and academic All-Big Sky honoree for three years straight.
In the 2019 campaign, when Bolton was an athlete, the Viks won the Big Sky tournament and were the #15 seed in the NCAA tournament—falling to #2 seed state rival Oregon Ducks. She helped lead the Viks to their first Division I tournament appearance since 2010. Other than their tournament runs in their time at D-II, PSU had not qualified for the tournament before 2010. The Viks in their 2021 run finished the season 5-24 (0-20).
To add to their collection of recent signings, the Viks add transfer Jorell Saterfield from University of Texas, El Paso. This 6’4” guard will come in as a junior with two more years of eligibility due to the COVID-19 waiver.
Another recent signing is a high school star from Alabama, MJ Jones. He was Shelby County, Tennessee Player of the Year, averaging 24 points per game. He scored 2,000 career points his senior year and looks forward to bringing the Viks to a Big Sky tournament win and NCAA playoff bid.
The Viks finished the season 14-17 (10-10) and made an impressive run in the Big Sky tournament, beating Idaho State and high-seeded Southern Utah before ultimately falling to Northern Colorado in a coin toss game. Other notable signings for the 2022-23 season are Portland native and transfer from Montana Cameron Parker, along with Hunter Woods, Keshaun Saunders, Isiah Kirby, Cole Farrell, Bobby Harvey and Kendall Munson.
The Seattle Storm played their first ever home game at the new Climate Pledge Arena, in the heart of downtown Seattle. They hosted the Minnesota Lynx, starting the season off right with a 97-74 win. Not only did the Storm start off 1-0, they were 1-0 in the Commissioner’s Cup and looked to defend their title.
Breanna Stewart—going into her seventh season—and Jewell Loyd showed out, both dropping 17 points on the Lynx. Stewart had eight rebounds and three assists. Loyd had three rebounds and two assists. Sue Bird, in her 550th career start with the Storm, dropped 11 points—with two rebounds and nine assists. Stephanie Talbot put up 11 points as well, with two rebounds and three assists. Epiphanny Prince put up 13 points with three assists. Gabby Williams, who was previously with the Chicago Sky, put up five points with three rebounds and one assist.
The Storm started off slow, being down by two in the first quarter and tying it 41 at the half. 34 points were made by Seattle in the third quarter to increase the lead and secure a win. Despite the double-digit loss, Sylvia Fowles and Aerial Powers of the Lynx both put up points in the double digits with 16 and 14. Jessica Shepard almost had a double-double, putting up nine points and 12 rebounds. Seattle finished third place in the West in their 2021 season at 21-11, losing to Phoenix in the second round. The Storm will return to Climate Pledge on May 14 to face Diana Taurasi and the Phoenix Mercury.