Amis credits work with Gibson for Nevada effort
The roots of Bill Amis
' best game in a Hawaii uniform can be traced to those summer pick-up games in the gym back in Oklahoma.
Even before he committed to join the Rainbow Warriors, Amis got to know UH guard and fellow Oklahoma City product Matt Gibson in open gym sessions. The duo developed an on-court connection -- particularly with the pick-and-roll -- over the course of those games.
"We played a lot together this summer and that was our favorite play to run," Amis said. "We would just run a two-man game at the top and now coach is letting us run it and it's working pretty well."
Fast-forward to last Saturday in Reno, and the play resulted in some easy buckets for Amis against Nevada as Gibson worked off the screen at the top and found him cutting down the lane for dunks.
Those were part of a 16-point, nine rebound performance for Amis, though his most productive game of the season was overshadowed by an 88-68 loss to the Wolf Pack.
"I made my shots but it wasn't a successful game by any measure," the 6-foot-9 sophomore forward said. "We went up there to handle business and win and we didn't do that."
The loss dropped the Rainbows (10-12, 6-4 Western Athletic Conference) to fifth in the league heading into Saturday's contest with first-place Utah State (18-7, 8-2) at the Stan Sheriff Center. Tip-off is set for 7:05 p.m.
With a full-week to prepare, the team had a day off from practice yesterday and will return to work this afternoon.
The UH big men will try to contain a Utah State frontcourt that powered the Aggies to an 86-80 win over the Rainbows on Jan. 3 in Logan. USU forward Tai Wesley led the Aggies with 27 points that night to complement guard Jaycee Carroll's 26.
"A lot of post defense is before the catch so I have to work on my positioning before they catch it," Amis said.
Climbing the charts
Along with becoming the 13th member of UH's 1,000-point club last week, Gibson continues his ascent on other UH career lists.
Gibson enters Saturday's game with 1,007 career points with Reggie Cross (1,013) and Anthony Carter (1,070) next on the list. His 23 points against Nevada moved him into the exclusive group. Julian Sensley was the last player to join the club back in 2005.
"It's a good deal, it'll be better once I'm through and can look back on it," Gibson said. "Right now I'm just trying to stay focused and motivated on the task at hand."
Gibson's 94 assists so far this season moved him into the top 10 in school history with 283.
Former UH coach Riley Wallace is town and will attend Saturday's game. ...This year's class of inductees to the UH Circle of Honor -- Bob Wagner, Ma'a Tanuvasa and Charlie Bessette -- will be recognized at halftime. ... All active, reservists and retired military members get two tickets for the price of one on "Military Night." A valid military ID is required.