BEMIDJI, Minn. – Fans are welcome to give the Bemidji State University men’s basketball team their best wishes at the NCAA Tournament in person Thursday at the Bemidji Regional Airport. The Beavers will arrive at the airport around 11 a.m. tomorrow and will take-off around 12 p.m. for their second appearance at the NCAA Central Region Men’s Basketball Tournament in program history, giving the Bemidji community a chance to say good luck as the Beavers venture west.
As the No. 3 seed in the tournament, the Beavers will be taking on the No. 6 seed St. Cloud State University at 1 p.m. (CST) in Golden, Colo. March 10. Top seeded Colorado School of Mines hosts the top eight teams in the 2012 NCAA Central Region Tournament March 10-13.
Tickets for the event are $10 for adults and $5 for youth (ages 6-17), senior citizens, and college students with valid school ID. Each ticket for the tournament will provide admittance for one session apiece. The facility will be cleared after each session. There will only be general admission tickets available for each session. The ticket office and pass gates will open 90 minutes prior to the start of the first game of each daily session and the arena will open 60 minutes prior to the scheduled start of each game. All spectators will need to purchase tickets prior to each session at the ticket office. Will call will be made available only for VIP pass pick up. All games will be played at Lockridge Arena (2,500) on the campus of the Mines.
Fans who are unable to attend can follow via the Internet for free. A live video feed will be available at http://www.csmorediggers.com/sports/mbkb/2011-12/MBBCentral_Region on the day of the game. The Beaver Radio Network will broadcast all region games on 92.1 The River in the Bemidji area and online at www.beaverradionetwork.com, with play-by-play from Mark Ricci. Live statistics will also be available at http://livestats.prestosports.com/csmorediggers/.
The Beavers (22-8) finished 16-6 in NSIC play to earn a NSIC Regular Season championship and the No. 1 seed in the NSIC/Sanford Health Men’s Basketball Tournament. BSU won its first round game against Wayne State College 57-53 Feb. 29 in Bemidji before falling in the semifinals in Rochester, Minn. to MSU Moorhead 73-64. BSU has already set a program record for wins in a season with 22. BSU’s only other appearance in the NCAA tournament was after winning the regular season conference title in 2003-04 and earning an at-large bid at No. 7. In that appearance the Beavers lost in the first round of the NCAA North Central Region Tournament to University of Nebraska-Kearney 104-90 in Denver, Colo.
St. Cloud State went 19-8 overall and 15-7 in NSIC play to finish tied for second in the league standings and earn the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament. The Huskies have lost three straight heading into the NCAA tournament, falling on the road to University of Mary 79-72 Feb. 18, at home in the regular season finale to Concordia University, St. Paul Feb. 25 by the score of 93-89 and to Winona State University 64-53 Feb. 29 in the first round of the NSIC tournament. SCSU defeated the Beavers in the team’s one meeting this season, using a last second shot to propel the Huskies to a 72-70 victory in Bemidij.
Bemidji State University, located in Bemidji, Minn., is an NCAA Division II institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).