November 11, 20111st2ndFinal
Bemidji State293160
Metro State393271
Stats at a GlanceBSUMBBMSCD
FG Percentage.476 (20-42) .426 (26-61)
3P FG Percentage.333 (5-15) .333 (4-12)
FT Percentage.600 (15-25) .652 (15-23)
Offensive Rebounds1119
Defensive Rebounds2217
Total Rebounds3336
Bench Points200
PointsEllisor - 27
Jonathan Morse - 20
ReboundsEllisor - 9
Nicholas Kay - 13
AssistsEllisor - 3
Tesdahl - 3
Reggie Evans - 3
StealsEllisor - 1
Tesdahl - 1
Edwards - 1
Brandon Jefferson - 3
BlocksEllisor - 1
Kinnell - 1
Noreen - 1
Rosenbloom - 1
Jonathan Morse - 2
Beavers battle with No. 10 Metro State in season opener, fall 71-60
Friday, November 11, 2011
Beavers battle with No. 10 Metro State in season opener, fall 71-60

DENVER – A first half riddled with turnovers and missed free throws dug the Bemidji State University men’s basketball team into a hole it couldn’t get itself out of as it fell in the 2011-12 season opener to No. 10 Metropolitan State College of Denver 71-60. The Beavers (0-1) got as close as five in the second half, but could complete the comeback on the road. Senior James Ellisor (F, Glendale, Ariz.) led BSU with 27 points and nine rebounds.

The season started with a fast-pace and high tempo from both teams as the Roadrunners got out to an early 11-5 lead four minutes into the contest. Sophomore Jon Krebs’ (F, Mahtomedi, Minn.) two free throws with 11:58 left in the half ended a 9-2 Metro State run that gave the home team a double-digit lead at 20-7. 

The Beavers were able to stay with the Roadrunners through the next five minutes, tying during that stretch 8-8 to trail 28-15 with just under seven to play in the half. Metro State pushed the lead to 14 with 3:51 left at 35-21. The Beavers closed the frame on an 8-4 run to close the gap to 10 at 39-29 when the halftime buzzer sounded.

The Beavers started the half shooting a perfect 5-for-5 from the free throw line, continuing their exceptional free throw shooting from last season when it finished the year No. 2 in the nation in the category. But the trend didn’t continue through the rest of the half as BSU shot 5-for-13 from the charity stripe for the rest of the frame for 10-of-18 (55.6%) in the half.

Turnovers were also a factor in the half as the Beavers committed 12 giveaways to hand the Roadrunners 18 points off turnovers. 

Metro State’s Reggie Evans, Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Preseason Player of the Year, led the Roadrunners in the half with 15 points. Ellisor was Bemidji State’s leader into the locker room with 11 points and six rebounds.

Ellisor hit the first bucket for the Beavers in the second half, but it was 4:17 into the frame before the 3-pointer went down and the Beavers trailed 43-32. A sophomore Jake Schalow (G, Kaukauna, Wis.) 3-pointer and an Ellisor free throw cut the deficit below 10 for the first time since early in the game as the scoreboard read 45-36 with just over 14 minutes left in the half. Just as fast as the deficit was cut, the Metro State lead grew as it went on a 4-0 run to take a 49-36 lead.

After an Ellisor old-fashioned 3-point play and a senior center Ryan Kinnell (Yuma, Ariz.) bucket from the free throw line cut the Roadrunner lead to seven at 51- 44 with 10:22 remaining in the second half. A Kinnell 3-pointer knocked off a couple more points as the Roadrunner lead was down to six at 57-46 with 8:01 showing on the clock.

The teams then traded points until Ellisor knocked down a 3-pointer with 5:45 left in the half to make the score 59-54, forcing a Metro State timeout. The bucket put the Beavers on a 25-16 run. Metro State came right back at the Beavers to stretch its lead back to 11 with a 6-0 run as the home team led 65-54 with just over four minutes on the clock.

Ellisor would get the deficit to seven at 65-58 with 2:48 left as he converted on a both free throws of a one-and-one. Then the Roadrunners again proved why they are a preseason top 10 as they went on a 4-0 run to get the lead back to double-digits. Metro State would keep the large lead to the end as the Beavers failed to make shots late, guiding it to the 11 point victory.

The Beavers finished the game with 18 turnovers and were outrebounded on the offensive glass 19-11, leading to 18 points off turnovers and eight second chance points handed to the Roadrunners. BSU shot 47.6 percent from the field in the game, as Metro State was 42.6 percent from the field. BSU finished with 19 less shots than the home team. The Beavers were 15-for-25 (60%) from the line.

Ellisor was the only Beaver in double-figures for BSU. Kinnell’s eight points ranked second for the squad as he added a second-best six rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench. 

BSU continues the NSIC/RMAC Challenge with University of Colorado at Colorado Springs Nov. 12 in Colorado Springs, Colo. at 7 p.m. mountain time.

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