BEMIDJI, Minn.- The 15th ranked Northern State Wolves led by four players scoring in double figures defeated the Bemidji State University Beavers by a score of 81-61 Friday evening at the BSU Gymnasium.
The Wolves saw another strong performance from the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference leading scorer Kevin Ratzsch who put in a game high 20 points on 7-of-13 from the field and 3-of-5 from behind the arc. He wasn’t the only scoring option for the Wolves on the night as Levi Hamilton sank 19 points. Luke Wicks scored 17, 15 of which came from behind the three point line.
The Beavers were led by Arron Evans (Sr., PG, Minneapolis, Minn.) who scored 16 on the night for the Beavers off of 5-of-10 shooting from the field and 4-for-4 from the free throw line. Alex Smith (Jr., F/C, Miami, Fla.) had a fine game as well as he threw down 14 points off of 7-of-9 from the field including four dunks.
The Beavers started out the game strong as Smith scored the first six points of the game as he hit a jumper then slammed home his next two buckets. Overall the Beavers started the game on a 10-3 run in the first 3:43 of the game. Northern came back however as they were able to tie the game at 19-19 on a jumper by Hamilton at the 9:04 mark. The Beavers broke the tie with a three pointer from Evans and stretched the lead to five on a jumper by Smith.
Wick’s three pointer at the 5:45 mark of the first half gave the Wolves their first lead of the game at 28-26. Evans free throw at 5:10 gave the Beavers their final lead of the night at 29-28. By the half Northern State was holding onto its largest lead of the half at five with a score of 42-37.
Both teams shot well in the first half with the Wolves shooting .640 (16-of-25) from the field while Bemidji State shot .577 (15-of-26).
The second half is when the Wolves started to take over as they went on a 14-4 run in the first 4:07 to stretch the lead to 13 at 56-43. The Beavers did not quit as they crawled back to within six at 56-50 after a Seth Haake (So., G, Eden Prairie, Minn.) three pointer.
The Beavers were able to hang around most of the game, keeping the Wolves lead in single digits. A Patrick Cassidy (Fr., F, St. Paul, Minn.) jumper with 3:21 left in the game put the score at 61-69, but ended up being the final points of the night for the Beavers as the Wolves went on a 12-0 run to give them a 20 point victory.
The Wolves finished the game shooting .534 on 31-of-58 from the field while the Beavers shot .490 (24-of-49).
The win for the Wolves moved its head coach Don Meyer into sole possesion of third place in the NCAA all-time victories list with 877, passing Adolph Rupp.
The loss moves the Beavers record to (5-10; 2-4 NSIC), while Northern State moves to (15-1; 6-1 NSIC).
The Beavers all-time series record between them and Northern State now stands at 20-49.
The Beavers return to action tommorow as they face the University of Mary Marauders at the BSU Gymnasium with opening tip scheduled to begin at 8:00 p.m.
Bemidji State University, located in Bemidji, Minn., is an NCAA Division II institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).