Anchorage's Demarcus Hall-Scriven leads UAF basketball team to historic upset over hometown UAA

Feb. 4—The last time Demarcus Hall-Scriven walked off the basketball court at the Alaska Airlines Center victorious and with his head held high was as a senior in high school. He helped lead the boys varsity team formerly known as Anchorage Christian School to the 3A state championship in 2019.

Since Anchorage's premier sports venue opened up in 2014, the University of Alaska Fairbanks men's basketball team had yet to record a road victory against University of Alaska Anchorage there, and it had been more than 20 years since the Nanooks beat the Seawolves on their home court altogether. The last time that happened was Feb. 22, 2003.

Hall-Scriven is now a senior guard and on Saturday night, with over 100 family members, friends and people from his church community in attendance, he took the court at the arena for the last time and helped the Nanooks make history by ending their respective droughts in a commanding 65-49 victory over UAA.

"This is my last time playing in the city and this was a must-win," he said. "Win or lose, I had to have a big game because it was my last time playing in front of the hometown and home crowd."

Not only did it mark his team's biggest win of the season so far, but Hall-Scriven had his best game of the year to date. He tied his season-high in points with 14 that included knocking down a pair of three pointers and tied for the team lead in rebounds with 10 to record his first double-double of the season.

"All glory to God for giving me that opportunity and I couldn't have done it without my teammates," he said. "They were looking for me and giving me open shots. We played together, with urgency, we fought, and this big."

With about four minutes left in the game, Hall-Scriven looked up at the scoreboard and saw that had eight rebounds and was two shy of a double-double and would not let himself be denied of reaching the personal milestone.

"I was fighting to get those last two," he said.

This win was made even more impressive given that UAA came into this red-hot and full of confidence after upsetting the No. 1 ranked team in the nation last weekend with a road upset of Saint Martin's.

"We knew it was going to be a dog fight," Hall-Scriven said. "We knew we had to come in here and give it our all and knew this crowd can get into and get them going. They normally shoot very good but we held them to a pretty bad (percentage)."

Even though the Nanooks still have a sub .500 record at 5-12, they're hoping that this huge win continues to propel them moving forward down the stretch as they try to qualify for the postseason.

"We needed this win and we need to go on a run here to push ourselves back into the top six to make the region tournament," Hall-Scriven said.