Minnesota State Defeats BSU 82-72 in Final Game of the Pepsi Tip Off
MANKATO, Minn. -- Minnesota State University, Mankato used a 21-point run to end the first half and begin the second half of play tonight in front of 3,009 at Bresnan Arena. The run handed the Bemidji State men's basketball team a set-back it could not recover from as the Mavericks went on to a 82-72 victory in the final game of Minnesota State's Pepsi Tip Off.
BSU played the Mavericks tough during the first half trading points and the lead four times in the half. With 5:41 to go in the half, BSU clung to an eight-point advantage (36-28), but the tide was about to change in a major way.
Minnesota State came on strong in the final minutes of the half holding the Beavers scoreless and rattling off 11 consecutive points capped by three-point baskets from Luke Anderson and Gameli Ahelegbe.
MSU would use the run to go into to the locker room with a 39-36 advantage at the half.
The Mavericks took advantage of three early BSU fouls by knocking down 5-of-6 free-throws to kick-start a nine-point run as MSU came out of the break to pick up right where it left off--extending its unanswered scoring streak to 21 points to take a 48-36 lead with 15:40 to go in the game.
The streak put BSU in a hole it simply could not dig itself out of.
The Beavers would shrink the deficit to a few as five points (51-46) in the second half, running off seven strait points of their own with just over 13:00 to go, but MSU would go on to take the 10-point win, 82-72.
Junior Duane Fields (Los Angeles, Calif.) led the way for BSU scoring a season-high 16 points on 5-of-12 from the floor, 2-of-5 from downtown and a perfect 4-of-4 from the line. He also added four rebounds, an assist and a block in 31 minutes of play. Spencer Carter (Jr., Chicago, Ill.) added 14 points and six boards while senior Ian Atkins (Detroit, Mich.) paced the team on the glass equaling a career-best eight boards.
Minnesota State had five players reach double-figure point totals as senior Jamel Staten, All-NCC and All-Region player from a year ago, led the way with 19 points. Chris Witfield grabbed a game-high nine rebounds and six blocks.
The Beavers drop to 0-3 overall and 0-2 in the 2004 Pepsi Tip Off with the loss. The Bemidji State men's team returns home to break the seal on the home portion of its 2004-05 schedule Monday (Nov. 22) when it plays host to Lake Superior State. The game is set for a 7:00 p.m. tip-off in BSU's Memorial Hall.