March 10, 20121st2ndFinal
St. Cloud State304777
Bemidji State324072
Stats at a GlanceSCSUBSUMBB
FG Percentage.481 (26-54) .500 (24-48)
3P FG Percentage.429 (6-14) .478 (11-23)
FT Percentage.826 (19-23) .591 (13-22)
Offensive Rebounds104
Defensive Rebounds2619
Total Rebounds3623
Bench Points1421
PointsBergstraser - 22
Ellisor - 16
ReboundsBergstraser - 7
Niehaus - 7
Walters - 6
AssistsRostampour - 4
Tesdahl - 6
StealsJensen - 2
Rongstad - 2
BlocksRostampour - 1
Fort - 1
Huskies end historic season as Beavers fall 77-72 at NCAA Tournament
Saturday, March 10, 2012
Huskies end historic season as Beavers fall 77-72 at NCAA Tournament
Photo Courtesy of SPX Sports

GOLDEN, Colo. - The Bemidji State University men’s basketball team saw its historic season come to an end Saturday afternoon as St. Cloud State University, the six-seed, pulled off the upset of the third-seed Beavers in the first round of the NCAA Division II Central Region Tournament at Lockridge Arena on the campus of Colorado School of Mines. BSU wraps up the 2011-12 campaign with a 22-9 mark.

St. Cloud State advances to face the winner of tonight’s game between Metro State University and Adams State College. The loss ends BSU’s second-ever visit to the NCAA tournament. The Beavers remain winless in the tournament as they fell in their other appearance in the dance after a 104-90 loss to University of Nebraska-Kearney in the 2003-04 tournament. The 2011-12 season saw BSU capture its 10th NSIC regular-season championship and its first since 2003-04.

St. Cloud State sophomore center Tim Bergstraser led the Huskies with 22 points including 15 in the second half. St. Cloud State controlled the paint throughout the game as they outrebounded Bemidji State 36-23 including a 10-4 edge on the offensive glass. Three other players scored in double-figures for SCSU as Shaun Jensen tallied 14, Brett Putz put in 13 and Mike Rostampour chipped in 12 points. The Huskies hit six three-pointers on the game for 43 percent. They were also solid from the charity stripe connecting on 19-of-23 (83 percent) of their attempts.

Ellisor led the Beavers as he has most of the season with 16 points. Bemidji State poured in 11 three-pointers on the game shooting 48 percent from beyond the arc but struggled on the glass and from the free-throw line as they were only 13-of-22 from the charity stripe. Mason Walters (Jr, F, Wilton, Wis.) added 15 points while Lance Rongstad (Jr., G, Eleva, Wis.) also chipped in 15.

The Beavers and Huskies played a highly competitive first half but BSU relied on early shooting from beyond the arc in the first half Saturday afternoon to lead St. Cloud State University 32-30 at the break. The Beavers were 6-of-10 from three-point land in the opening half led by two treys by Walters who went into the intermission with a game-high nine points off the bench. Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Player of the Year Ellisor had eight points at the break.

BSU led by as many as 10 points in the first half after a Ellisor fast break layup put the Beavers ahead 27-17 at the 4:45 mark of the first half but St. Cloud State came roaring back with an 11-2 run to cut the Bemidji State lead to one (29-28) with 2:24 remaining. The Huskies’ run was led by a pair of layups by Tony Brooks and a three-pointer by Rostampour.

The Beavers responded as Bryce Tesdahl (Sr., G, Crosby, Minn.) connected on 1-of-2 free-throw shots on the other end after a Brooks foul to put BSU ahead 30-28 with 1:05 remaining in the first.

After a missed shot by Brooks for St. Cloud State, Tesdahl was called for the foul on Rostampour on the rebound, sending the Huskies to the line. Rostampour knotted the game at 30-30 with two made free throws.

With the game tied and 49 seconds left on the clock in the opening period, BSU looked to its go-to player, Ellisor, to secure the lead going into the locker room. Walters found the senior forward for the layup with 31 seconds remaining in the half. SCSU had the ball for the final shot on the first period but Rostampour missed the jumper at the buzzer as the Beavers held on to the 32-30 advantage.

St. Cloud State was paced by Rostampour’s eight first-half points and five rebounds. Bergstraser chipped in seven points and four boards while Jensen had six points.

The Beavers and Huskies exchanged baskets early in the second period, with SCSU down one (40-39) after a Bergstraser layup, BSU used a 5-0 run to get the lead out to six (45-40) following an Ellisor bucket and a Dermaine Crockrell (Jr., G, Mesa, Ariz.) three-pointer. However, the Huskies wouldn’t go away as they tied the game 48-48 after Brett Putz drained a three. Bergstraser was the story of the early portion of the second half for SCSU as he tallied 13 of the Huskies’ first 15 points in the frame.

St. Cloud State took its first lead since holding a 15-14 advantage at the 11:51 mark in the first half after Jensen made two free throws to put the Huskies ahead 52-51 with 9:51 remaining. SCSU went ahead 54-51 after a Putz layup. After Ellisor and Scott Hawkins traded a pair of made free throws on either end to put the game at 56-53, the Beavers used back-to-back three-pointers from Jake Schalow (So., G, Kaukana, Wis.) and Rongstad to take the lead back 59-56 with 7:46 remaining. Going with the theme of the day, the Huskies responded again as Hawkins drained the triple to knot the game 59-59 with 7:31 left in the contest. The Beavers and Huskies traded a pair of buckets on each end to make it 61-61 with 6:13 left.

St. Cloud State then used a 10-2 run to jet out to a 71-63 advantage over the Beavers with 2:48 remaining. Bemidji State looked to make one final run at the game in the closing minutes as Tesdahl made a layup and Rongstad hit 1-of-2 from the charity stripe to cut the advatange to 71-66. After a Jensen miss from the free-throw line, the Beavers looked to have a chance to cut into the lead but Ellisor missed the three and had to foul St. Cloud State again with 39 seconds remaining. Jensen hit both shots this time to put the Beavers down 73-66. Walters hit a three to cut the lead to 73-69 with 24 seconds left. After Jensen made two more free throws, BSU was down 75-69 with just 22 ticks left on the clock. The Beavers made one more last ditch effort as Rongstad hit a three to put BSU down 75-72 but it proved to be too little to late as the Huskies held on for a 77-72 victory.

St. Cloud State improves to 2-0 on the season against the Beavers as they secured a win over BSU on a last second buzzer-beater Jan. 13 at BSU Gymnasium.