Manny Patterson has been kicking it up a notch lately for the Green Bay Phoenix.
The 6’8” freshman forward from Chicago has been playing his best basketball of the season the past few games including collecting a career high 14 rebounds in Green Bay’s 99-92 victory over in-state rival Milwaukee on Monday night.
During the Phoenix ten non-conference games against Division I opponents earlier this season, Patterson made eight starts and averaged 5.8 points and 3.9 rebounds in 17.9 minutes per game. He also added nearly a block per game (0.8) and shot a solid 72.0% from the free throw line. He struggled to find his shot, however, and shot just 39.2% from the floor over that stretch.
But over the past five games he has posted solid numbers and has given Green Bay an interior presence it desperately needs on both ends of the floor.
The Phoenix have gone just 1-4 during that stretch but individually Patterson is playing his best basketball of the season. He’s averaging 8.4 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game during that stretch. He’s been more active around the basket offensively and is not settling for long jump shots as often, shooting a robust 60.0% from the floor during the five game stretch.
He’s also grabbing 3.0 offensive rebounds per game during that stretch, something that essentially equals another possession for Green Bay’s offense.
He posted a career high 12 points in the loss at Youngstown State only to surpass it a few days a later at IUPUI when he scored 14 points to go along with 8 rebounds and 2 steals.
In the overtime win over Milwaukee, he scored 3 points but also had 2 steals and 2 blocks along with his career high 14 rebounds.
“That’s something that we need from him not just that game, we need him to build on it,” head coach Linc Darner said on WTAQ before Thursday’s game against Wright State. “Maybe not 12 or 14, but to get 8 or 9 a game that’d be huge for our team because rebounding has been one of our weaknesses.”
Green Bay actually ranks 2nd in the league in rebounds per game during conference play at 37.7, one behind Detroit Mercy’s 38.8. But that may be a product up the Phoenix up-tempo style resulting in more possessions per game. A better metric is rebounding margin where the Phoenix rank 9th in the 10 team league ahead of only Cleveland State.
6’3” guard Khalil Small leads the team in rebounding at 7.2 per game during the conference season followed by 6’6” Sandy Cohen (5.7) and then Patterson (4.6).
Since Patterson is basically the team’s only interior player on the roster – 6’8” David Jesperson and 6’8” Will Chevalier do most of their offensive work on the perimeter – Green Bay needs him to keep performing at a high level if they have any hope of turning the season around.
He had another solid performance Thursday night in the loss against Wright State scoring 9 points, grabbing 6 rebounds, and adding 2 steals in 20 minutes of action.
Categories: News and Notes