Beavers fall to Upper Iowa, 73-54
Friday, January 18, 2008
FAYETTE, Iowa (Dorman Gym)  -The Bemidji State University men’s basketball team dropped its first game ever to Upper Iowa University on Friday evening, 73-54. The Peacocks took a 11-point lead into the break thanks to a 7-of-12 performance from beyond the three-point arc in the first half (.583).

Patrick Cassidy (Fr., F, St. Paul, Minn.) poured in a career-high 16 points on an efficient 7-of-10 night from the field and 2-of-2 from the line to lead the Beavers in scoring. He also posted six rebounds. Arron Evans (Sr., G, Minneapolis, Minn.) added 10 points. Alex Smith (Jr., C, Miami, Fla.) led the Beavers with seven rebounds and two blocks while chipping in six points.

Upper Iowa was led by the tandem of Matt Lesan and Jude Roybal who each reached double-figure scoring. Lesan was 9-of-12 from the field, 3-of-4 from the behind the arc and was 6-of-10 from the free throw line for a game-high 27 points. Roybal was 2-of-3 from the field and 7-of-11 from the free throw line for 11 points. Roybal added a game-high six assists while Chris Sullivan grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds.

Upper Iowa played the first half from outside the arc.

Matt Lesan got the Peacocks on the board 2:13 seconds into the game hitting from three-point land showing an early sign of what was to come. Forty-seven second later Lesan pushed the Peacocks lead to 6-0 on his second three-pointer in the game. Chris Sullivan netted a jumper with 16:11 remaining on the clock to give the Peacocks a 8-0 lead. Brady Fairbanks (Fr., F, Bena, Minn.) got the Beavers on the board off a layup with 15:33 left in the half.

BSU would cut the Peacocks lead to five points (20-15) off a three pointer by Evans with 7:28 left in the half. The Peacocks closed out the first half outscoring the Beavers 19-13 to go up by eleven at halftime (39-28).

The Beavers came out in the second half and cut the Peacocks lead to nine points off a layup by Cassidy, but Lasen answered for the Peacocks as he scored Upper Iowa’s first six points of the half to push the Peacock lead to their largest of the game of 13 points (45-32). With 8:44 left Beavers cut the Peacock lead to nine points (54-45) with 8:44 remaining in the game but the Peacock offense proved to be to much and eventually earned its first ever win over the Beavers, 74-54.

BSU continued work as the Beavers turned up its defense in the second half forcing 11 turnovers which translated into 10 points. The Beavers also made up ground with solid shooting from Cassidy and Gunther Zajic (Jr., G, Linz, Austria.). In the second half the two combined for a combined 5-of-9 shooting from the field. BSU shot 3-of-7 from the three point line in the second half (.429).

The Beavers finished the game shooting 37.0 percent from the field (20-54) and 33.3 percent from beyond the arc. The Peacocks were 22-50 (.440) overall and finished the game 8-of-18 (.444) from outside the three-point line.

BSU faced substantial disparity at the free-throw line as the Peacocks out shot BSU 36-14 at the line making 21 (.583). BSU was 9-of-14 (.643).

The Beavers fall to 3-1 all-time versus the Peacocks in the series and are 1-1 all-time at the Dorman Gym.

Bemidji State (5-12; 2-6) will be back in action tomorrow when the Beavers will travel to Winona, Minn. to take on No. 3 Winona State (19-1; 8-0). Game time is set for 8:00 p.m. from McCown Gymnasium on the campus of Winona State University.

Bemidji State University, located in Bemidji, Minn., is an NCAA Division II institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).