BEMIDJI, Minn. -- The Bemidji State University men’s basketball program looks to mark program history this weekend in a road trip to St. Cloud State University and University of Minnesota Duluth. The Beavers will attempt to reach 1,000 wins in program history at 8 p.m. Friday against the Huskies in St. Cloud, Minn., before facing the Bulldogs at 6 p.m. Saturday in Duluth, Minn.
- Bemidji State and St. Cloud State will play in the 147th game all-time between the two schools Friday. The Huskies lead the all-time record, 100-46, with seven wins in the last eight meetings. SCSU took the first matchup of the 2017-18 season, 96-62, in Bemidji, Minn., for the program’s 100th win all-time against BSU. The Beavers last took a win against the Huskies Jan. 10, 2016, 70-69, at home.
- Three Beavers scored at least 12 points in the first meeting between BSU and SCSU Dec. 2 in Bemidji. Senior guard Sharif Black and sophomore guard Jacob McNallan each led the team with 14 points while sophomore guard Jai’Vionne Green added 12. McNallan went 5-of-7 shooting from the field off the bench, including a career-high four 3-pointers, to set his career high mark in scoring.
- Saturday’s game marks the 136th all-time meeting in the Bemidji State/Minnesota Duluth rivalry. UMD owns the all-time record, 90-46, despite BSU having won the last three matchups. The Beavers came away with a 73-63 victory over the Bulldogs Dec. 1 in Bemidji.
- All five BSU starters scored in double-digits to account for all 73 of the team’s points in the first meeting of the season against UMD. Senior guards Sharif Black and Christian Pekarek each totaled 16 points, which set Pekarek’s season-high mark in scoring. Sophomore forward Logan Bader went 6-of-7 shooting from the floor to finish the game with 13 points and led the team with eight rebounds and three blocks.
Fast Break Bemidji State
- BSU split its final games of the 2017 calendar year with an 84-75 loss to Upper Iowa University and a 62-59 win against Winona State University at BSU Gymnasium. The Beavers are now one win shy of reaching 1,000 total victories in program history.
- BSU trailed UIU by as many as 19 points in the second half before coming back to within five in the final two minutes of play. The Beavers shot 43.9 percent from the field and 34.4. percent from beyond the arc but allowed 22 points off 16 turnovers.
- Black led all scorers with 22 points to set a new season-high and added four assists, four rebounds and one steal. Bader set a career-high mark in scoring with 18 points on 7-of-11 shooting, including 4-of-5 from long range. Freshman forward Derek Thompson put up 10 points and led the team with seven rebounds.
- Thompson scored BSU’s go-ahead basket with under one minute remaining against WSU and helped keep the Warriors off the scoreboard in the final minute of play. Bemidji State shot 45.8 percent from the field and 39.3 percent from long range.
- Black again led the Beavers in scoring with 15 points while Pekarek followed with 12 points, all coming on 3-point attempts. In addition to leading the team in scoring, Black also led with six assists and added five rebounds. Thompson again scored 10 points against the Warriors and chipped in five rebounds, one assist, one steal and one block.
- The Beavers enter 2018 sixth in the NSIC with 73.1 points allowed per game and 14th with 71.8 points scored per game. Bemidji State’s 43.8 percent field goal defense comes in fifth in the league compared to its 45.2 percent shooting offense that comes in 14th.
- Black overtook Green as BSU’s leading scorer this season as he averages 13.7 points per contest. Black’s mark ranks him 23rd in the conference while Green follows close behind in 29th with 12.5 points per game. Pekarek is a key factor in BSU’s scoring as he leads the team and ranks eighth in the NSIC with 4.0 assists per game. He also ranks sixth in the league with an assist-to-turnover ratio of 2.4.
Scouting St. Cloud State
- The Huskies split the team’s two road games over the weekend with an 82-80 loss to Minot State University and a 77-66 win over University of Mary. SCSU finished 6-2 during the month of December.
- The program is now 9-4 all-time against Minot State with the loss and 13-9 against U-Mary in the victory. SCSU took its first loss of the season while scoring at least 80 points after winning four games when scoring at least 80. The Huskies improved to 5-0 on the season when limiting teams to 69 points or fewer after holding the Marauders to 66 points.
- Junior guard Gage Davis recorded his first double-double of the season and 25th of his career after recording 14 points and 14 rebounds against Minot State. Davis added 21 points against U-Mary, which is the second time this season and 38th time in his career reaching at least 20 points.
- Senior forward Jon Averkamp averaged 22 points per game on the weekend while shooting 75 percent from the field (18-for-24). He has scored 20 or more points in nine games this season and led the team in scoring in 11 contests after totaling 21 points against the Beavers and 23 against the Marauders. Averkamp needs just one point to reach the 1,000-point milestone.
Scouting Minnesota Duluth
- Minnesota Duluth has already tripled its road win total from a season ago after a split against U-Mary and Minot State. UMD opened its weekend with a 63-58 win at U-Mary before an 80-71 loss at MiSU.
- As a unit, UMD shot 40.2 percent from the field and 36.7 percent beyond the arc while registering 4.5 steals and 4.0 blocks per game over the weekend. The Bulldogs’ top four scorers over the weekend were sophomores, who currently hold 72.2 percent of the UMD offense. UMD’s 58 points allowed to U-Mary was a season-low for the Bulldogs.
- Sophomore forward Brandon Myer led the team in scoring each night including 28 points against Minot State. Myer is now averaging 19.3 points per game, which ranks sixth in the league.
- Sophomore guard Logan Rohrscheib totaled 26 points on the weekend on 42.1 percent shooting, while over half of his field goal attempts came from long range.
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Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).