Beavers Wrap Up Non-conference Play with a 74-53 Win Over Upper Iowa
Sunday, December 12, 2004
BEMIDJI, Minn. -- [box score] The Bemidji State University men's basketball team's defense held Upper Iowa University to an opponent season-low 19 points in the first half of Sunday Afternoon's game en route to a 74-53 victory in front of 483 at the BSU Gymnasium. Junior Duane Fields (Los Angeles, Calif.) led the way for the Beavers scoring 16 points.

The Beavers led this one from wire to wire. Fields would hit a jumper just 19 seconds into the game to put BSU on top 2-0 and they would never look back.

The Peacocks hit just one two-point field goal in the first half and it took them 17:54 to manage that. Opting for the outside game, UIU hoisted 20 shots in the half 11 of which were of the three-point variety. Shooting 45.5 percent (5-11) from beyond the arc just won't cut it when you're playing an up-tempo and athletic team like BSU. The Beavers went on to double UIU's point total as the teams headed to the locker rooms at the break, 38-19.

In the half BSU was 16-of-38 (42.1 percent) and 5-of-19 (26.3 percent) from three-point land. The Beavers held a solid 25-17 edge on the glass while winning the turnover battle forcing 11 and committing just four.

BSU came out of the halftime break to put the clamps on the Peacocks. The stingy Beavers' defense allowed just seven points during the first nine minutes of the half while forcing seven UIU turnovers. In the meantime, the offense was clicking scoring 21 points during that same span of time to increase its lead to 32 points with just 11 minutes to play.

BSU Head Coach Pat Smith went to his bench early in the half and it paid off. Sixteen of BSU's first 21 points of the half came from bench players. Bemidji, Minn. native junior Luke Rasmus led the squad connecting on three of his first four shots of the half, going 2-for-3 from beyond the arc totaling eight of his career-high 11 points during the run.

The Beavers went up by as many as 37 points (68-31) with 6:29 to go in the game before UIU scored 14 unanswered points including three three-pointers from Aaron Carter to climb to within 22 (70-48) of the Beavers. But time was not on the Peacocks side as they would drop their seventh consecutive game 74-53.

It was a team effort for BSU this afternoon as 11 of the 14 players to see time on the court got their names recorded in the scoring column. Fields led the way with a game-high 16 points while Rasmus totaled 11 in just seven minutes of play. Junior Spencer Carter (Chicago, Ill.) was the team's top rebounder grabbing 10 boards while senior James Roberson (Chicago, Ill.) recorded a BSU 2004-05 best nine assists in the game. Fields also recorded the team's only block of the game.

Aaron Carter led the way for the UIU scoring 15 points on 5-of-8 from downtown. Ernest Addae grabbed a contest-high 12 rebounds in the loss.

For the game BSU was 31-of-71 (43.7 percent) from the field, made 10 of a season-high 33 three-point attempts (30.3 percent) and was 2-of-5 (40.0 percent) from the line.

UIU was 17-of-49 (34.7 percent) from the field, 10-for-26 (38.5 percent) from beyond the arc and 9-of-19 from the charity stripe (47.4 percent).

BSU also dominated the boards hauling down 45 to UIU's 36. Twenty of BSU's rebounds came on the offensive end of the court leading to 17 second-chance points.

The Beavers also tallied 25 points off of turnovers forcing the Peacocks into 19 turnovers while committing just 12.

The win springs BSU into its four-week hiatus with a 6-7 overall record. The Beavers return to action Jan. 7th when they open the 2004-05 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference season at the BSU Gymnasium versus Concordia University-St. Paul. The game is slated for a 8:00 p.m. tip-off.