Last Place MSU-Moorhead Hands BSU 80-68 Loss
Saturday, February 19, 2005
MOORHEAD, Minn. - [box score] Just 24-hours removed from arguably the biggest win in the Patrick Smith era at Bemidji State University, the Beaver men suffered their most disappointing loss of the season to eighth place Minnesota State University-Moorhead, 80-68 at the Nemzek Field House in Moorhead, Minn.

Coming into the game with the best conference record in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference and its eye set on defending its 2003-04 regular season championship, a BSU loss to the last place team would be disappointing enough, but it was the way that the Beavers played that may have been more disheartening.

The Beavers failed to light their side of the scoreboard during the first six-minutes and 27-seconds, missing their first 10 shots and turning the ball over five times during that stretch. Meanwhile, the Dragons took a 16-point advantage before Duane Fields (Los Angeles, Calif.) tipped in BSU's first points of the game with 13:33 left in the first half.

After Smith called a timeout, BSU responded ripping off 26 of the next 30 points to take a 26-22 in typical Bemidji State fashion when Mike Fore (Bagley, Minn.) hit one of BSU's 11 threes.

MSUM climbed back in to tie the game 26-26 with just over two minutes to go, but the Beavers finished the half with the its last four point to own a 30-26 halftime lead.

It was a back-and-fourth first 2:49 if the second half as MSUM battled back to tie the game twice before taking the lead, 35-32, on a Ridas Globys three-ball with 16:46 to play. The Dragons would never trail again.

The Globys triple started a MSUM 10-3 run to put BSU down 44-35. The Dragons stretched that lead to as many as 18 points, 66-48, with 6:43 left when Lee Isaacson found an empty lane to drive and converted the lay-up.

Slowly the Beavers inched their way back within striking distance, closing the gap to six points, 71-65, with 93 seconds to play after James Roberson nailed back-to-back three-point field goals. But time was just not on the Beavers' side as MSU-Moorhead sank nine-of-10 free-throws during the final 1:33 with BSU forced to put the home team at the foul line to stop the clock.

MSUM held the Beavers off during the second half scorching the nets shooting 65.2 percent from the field in the second stanza including 57.1 percent from three-point land. The team also sank 20-of-25 free-throws in the game outshooting the Beavers by a 25-17 margin.

BSU's Roberson came off the bench to lead all players with 22 points on 8-of-13 including a season-high 5-for-9 performance from beyond the arc. He also collected a rare blocked shot--the second during his time at BSU. Spencer Carter (Chicago, Ill.) and Ian Atkins paced the Beavers each collecting seven rebounds while Carter led the Beavers with a career-high six assists.

Chris Anderson led MSU-Moorhead posting a double-double with 19 points and 16 rebounds. Blake Strouth was one of four other Dragons to record double-digit point totals with 13 while posting a game-high seven assists.

The loss moves BSU to 16-9 overall while the team is 10-2 in NSIC play. It also sets up a final week showdown with 10-2, Winona State with the 2004-05 NSIC regular season title and the right to host the semi-final and championship rounds of the 2005 NSIC Tournament on the line. The Beavers will hit the road Friday for an 8:00 p.m. match-up versus the Warriors and will seal the 2004-05 regular season with a trip to St. Paul, Minn. to battle Concordia University-St. Paul in an 8:00 p.m. tip-off.