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McDermott puts finishing touches on recruiting class

ASHLAND ' Southern Oregon University men's basketball coach Brian McDermott put the finishing touches on a star-studded 2004 recruiting class by announcing the addition of college transfers Jeff Williams and Levi Westgaard on Thursday.

Williams, a 6-foot-8, 230-pound power forward from Salem who played his freshman season at Montana State University-Bozeman, joins another former Bobcat transfer, NAIA All-American Shea Washington, in the Raider ranks. The two-time Valley League all-star for North Salem High averaged 18 points and 11 rebounds as a senior, played in the Oregon-Washington prep all-star game and was a McDonald's All-American nominee.

The aspiring teacher and coach scored 13 points in a 12-game, ankle injury-shortened 2001-02 season at MSU, and he played 21 contests for junior college powerhouse College of Southern Idaho in 2002-03.

Westgaard, a 6-5, 205-pound wing, was a Midwestern League football (quarterback) and basketball all-star as a junior and senior at Marshfield High in Coos Bay. After a two-year hoops stint at Southwestern Oregon Community College, he accumulated nine-point, six-rebound averages as a starter for Raider conference rival Cascade College last season, including game-highs of 23 points and 14 boards.

Levi has a great understanding of the game and will remind people of (former Raider post) Matt Zosel, McDermott said. He is a very physical player who can guard just about anyone. He provides us depth at the 4 and 5 spots.

Williams and Westgaard join Matt Cowell (Grants Pass High), RaShawn McAllister (San Bernardino Valley CC) and Thomas Ward (Tacoma Bellarmine Prep) as key additions to the SOU program that returns 10 players off last year's 19-15 squad.