Can Newman go unbeaten in league?

Obviously, the Cardinal Newman basketball team isn’t going to predict an undefeated season, but that’s what blogs are for, to speculate.

Newman wraps up North Bay League first half play Saturday night at Ukiah and that’s not a gimme game. Ukiah is much improved and is 4-2 in the NBL and 13-5 overall. It’s never easy playing at Ukiah. The game was originally scheduled to be played at Newman, but at the request of Ukiah coach Bill Heath, the two league games were switched. The final regular season game between Ukiah and Newman will be played at Cardinal Newman next month.

So what are the chances of Newman going perfect in league? After a convincing win at Piner, in which the Cardinals played excellent defense, it would appear Newman’s chances are pretty good. Even if they don’t shoot particularly well on a given night, they still play shut-down pressure defense, they rebound well and they pass well, creating shots inside the key.

Next week, Newman plays at Elsie Allen and home against Santa Rosa, the two teams at the bottom of the NBL rankings.

The following week, Newman will have a tough three-game week, starting Tues., Feb. 3 at home against Rancho Cotate, Thursday, Feb. 5 at home against Piner and Saturday, Feb. 7 at Maria Carrillo. Newman ends its NBL season at Montgomery Feb. 11 and at home against Ukiah on Feb. 13.

Piner, Carrillo and Ukiah would seem to offer the biggest tests for Newman. Even should Newman win its final eight NBL games and finish the regular season 26-0, maintaining that unblemished mark gets much more difficult in the postseason, starting with two games in the NBL Tournament and then Div. IV NCS playoffs.

Right now let’s hold it to the regular season. Can the Cardinals go unbeaten in the North Bay League? I’d say yes.