SUPERIOR, Wis. -- The Bemidji State University men’s basketball team picked up
its second consecutive win as the Beavers were able to outlast the
University of Wisconsin-Superior Yellowjackets in a non-conference tilt
in Superior, Wis., 76-71. Alex Smith (Jr., F/C,
Miami, Fla.) recorded his second game of the season with 20 or more
points as he netted 21 points to lead the Beavers to their second win
of the season.
The Beavers were able to outscore the Yellowjackets 20-12 on points off turnovers while netting six more points in the paint the UW-Superior (32-26) and recording eight more second chance points (19-11) in the win. The Beavers were able to out rebound their opponents for the fourth time in six games as they held a 32-25 advantage on the glass.
Both teams shot a remarkable percentage from the field as the Beavers held a slight advantage over the Yellowjackets as BSU shot .558 percent (29-52) from the field and UWS shot .483 percent (28-58) from the field. Bemidji State also shot .615 (8-13) from behind the arc, the best the Beavers have shot from three-point range all season.
Smith led the Beavers offensively as he netted 21 points on 9-of-13 shooting while pulling down nine rebounds. Seth Haake (So., G, Eden Prairie, Minn.) and Arron Evans (Sr., G, Minneapolis, Minn.) each had 16 points in the win. Haake earned his points on 5-of-6 from the field including 2-for-2 from three-point range and 4-for-4 from the free throw line. Evans was 5-of-9 from the field, all five of his field goals were triples as he set a new career-high with five three pointers made in a game (5-7). Sergej Baskow (So., C, Ludwigsburg, Germany) was also in double-figures as he had 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting in 16 minutes of play. Kyle Scott (Jr., G, Phoenix, Ariz.) dished out nine of the Beavers 21 assists. The nine assists is a new career-high for Scott.
The Yellowjackets were led by the duo of Jake Smith and Dan Culy. Smith netted a game high 22-points on 10-of-14 shooting from the field while Culy was the long range threat for UWS with 18 points on 5-of-13 from the field and 5-of-7 from beyond the arc.
With the score 3-2 in favor of the Yellowjackets the Beavers 12-2 run to push its lead to nine points at 14-5 at the 15:30 mark of the first half. Back-to-back three-pointers by Evans along with three lay-ups for the Beavers allowed BSU to jump out to such a large lead in the early going. UWS went on a 7-0 run over the next 2:06 second to climb back in the contest, Dan Culy netted five of the seven points during the run for the Yellowjackets.
The Beavers once again went on a run to push its lead up to as many as 12 points (24-12). The Beavers scored on four consecutive trips down the floor to go on a 10-0 run. Smith got things started with a layup and the Haake and Evans went back-to-back from downtown followed by a Haake layup to cap off the run for the Beavers. The Yellowjackets continued to battle as they cut the Beaver lead down to as many as just three points (26-29) with 4:29 remaining in the half, but that is as close as they would get as the Beavers ended the half on a 13-8 run and held a eight point advantage going into the break (42-34).
Haake and Evans led the Beavers in the first half as they both were in double-figure scoring going into the half. Evans had 12 points while Haake had 10 points.
In the second half the Beavers came out and pushed its lead up to its largest of the game at 13 points. Brady Fairbanks (Fr., G/F, Bena, Minn.) scored the first five points of the half by either team to give the Beavers a 47-34 lead with 18:26 left in the contest. The Yellowjackets would not go away as they found a way to get back into the game. UWS took advantage of some costly turnovers by the Beavers and with 6:46 left on the clock found themselves only down by four points (64-60). With the score at 70-64 in favor of the Beavers and 3:54 left on the clock both teams went cold as neither team made a bucket until :51 seconds were left on the clock. Dwight Hill brought the Yellowjackets with in four but some clutch free-throw shooting by the Beavers at the end of the game would help BSU seal the victory. The Beavers went 6-for-8 from the free-throw line in the final :39 seconds as Haake led the way going 4-for-4.
With the win the Beavers improve to 20-18 all-time versus UWS and they improve to 2-4 on the season. Also, with the win the Beavers have won two consecutive games, the last time the Beavers won back-to-back games was Feb. 25, 2006 to March 1, 2006.
Bemidji State (2-4; 0-0 NSIC) will open up Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) play this weekend when the Beavers host Southwest Minnesota State on Friday and Wayne State College (Neb.) on Saturday from the BSU Gymnasium. Both games are scheduled to start at 8:00 p.m., respectively.
Bemidji State University, located in Bemidji, Minn., is an NCAA Division II institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).