Men's basketball: Dragons hang on for victory
The Minnesota State Moorhead Dragons survived a frantic final minute Sunday at Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse to earn victory. Northern State had a close-range shot rim out at the buzzer as the Dragons held on for a 72-71 victory in Northern Sun Intercol...
The Minnesota State Moorhead Dragons survived a frantic final minute Sunday at Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse to earn victory.
Northern State had a close-range shot rim out at the buzzer as the Dragons held on for a 72-71 victory in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference men's basketball play.
"I was proud of our guys the way they hung in. It wasn't a beautiful display of basketball," Dragons head coach Chad Walthall said. "They don't rate them. A win's a win and we are certainly pleased with it."
The Dragons (8-5, 5-4 NSIC) earned a weekend split, rebounding from Saturday's 72-57 home loss against the University of Mary.
"It was big after last night," said Dragons junior guard Jake Driscoll, who scored a game-high 19 points. "We lost to Mary where we didn't play very well. ... Holding on to get the win, that is big for our confidence."
MSUM led 72-71 with 3 seconds remaining when Dragons junior Tarell Clark missed the front end of a bonus. Northern State nabbed the rebound and quickly pushed the ball up court. Wolves senior Tom Parks made a leaping catch on a long-range pass near the basket and attempted to catch and shoot the ball in one the motion. Parks' shot hit the backboard and rimmed out as the final horn sounded.
Since the shot didn't go in, the officials didn't rule if it counted. However, after watching replays, the television crew from Midco Sports Network thought the shot came before the final horn.
"We had our matchups and during the course of action we had a couple guys double on the ball," Walthall said of why Parks was open near the basket. "That sometimes happens in the heat of action."
The Dragons had a 70-69 lead with less than a minute to play when junior guard DJ Hamilton drove to the basket and scored a layup. Hamilton was called for a charge, but the officials counted to basket, ruling Hamilton released the shot before he ran over the defender. That staked the Dragons to a 72-69 lead with 46 seconds remaining.
Northern State forward Dustin Tetzlaff (who drew the charge) drained the ensuing two free throws to slice the MSUM lead to 72-71, which proved to be the final margin.
"The officials weren't what cost us this game," Northern State head coach Paul Sather said. "There are always going to be frustrating things that don't go your way in a game."
Driscoll scored 14 of his points in the first half, including 3-for-3 shooting from the 3-point line. That performance helped the Dragons build a 43-37 halftime lead.
"My teammates got me some open looks so I was just trying to knock it down when I had open looks," Driscoll said.
The Dragons scored the first basket in the second half for a 45-37, which was their largest of the game. MSUM didn't trail in the final eight-plus minutes, taking the lead for good after a Clark 17-footer. That shot staked the Dragons to a 62-60 lead with 8:24 remaining.
"I don't think we were ready to play the way we needed to," Sather said. "Both teams were a little bit sleepy that first 10 minutes. They just did a better job of waking up that first half and we didn't."
NORTHERN STATE (6-8, 2-8 NSIC): Parks 4-9 0-0 10, Lane 5-8 1-1 12, Hoellein 5-9 0-1 15, Pryor 4-9 5-6 13, Tetzlaff 6-12 4-6 16, Newton 0-2 0-2 0, Hannigan 1-4 1-2 4, Storrusten 0-2 1-3 1, Filipovic 0-1 0-0 0, Gregor 0-0 0-1 0. Totals 25-56 12-22 71.
MSUM (8-5, 5-4): Chapman 2-5 2-2 7, Ja. Driscoll 6-12 3-4 19, Clark 5-12 3-6 13, Novak 5-7 0-0 10, Williamson 1-9 2-3 4, VanHavermaet 2-4 0-0 5, Hamilton 4-9 2-3 10, Olson 2-3 0-0 4. Totals 27-61 12-18 72.
Half: MSUM 43, NSU 37.3-point goals: NSU 9-18 (Parks 2-4, Lane 1-1, Hoellein 5-9, Hannigan 1-3, Storrusten 0-1), MSUM 6-13 (Chapman 1-3, Ja. Driscoll 4-7, VanHavermaet 1-3). Total fouls: NSU 18, MSUM 20. Rebounds: NSU 36 (Tetzlaff 13), MSUM 36 (Novak 9). Assists: NSU 12 (Lane 7), MSUM 8 (Clark 4). Steals: NSU 4 (four players with 1), MSUM 8 (Clark 3). Turnovers: NSU 15 (Hoellein 4, Pryor 4), MSUM 12 (Olson 4).
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