Bison Celebrate Christmas
Published: Friday, January 17, 2014
Updated: Friday, January 17, 2014 16:01
The NDSU men’s basketball team had a merry Christmas as they won four out of five games over winter break. They moved to 12-5 overall after those five games. After starting 3-3 they have seemed to find their groove as they are now red hot having won 10 of their last 12 games. They also started Summit League play and are now sitting at 1-1 in the conference.
Their first game was played against the Towson Tigers. The same Towson Tigers that the NDSU football team squared off against in the FCS National Championship. In a prelude of sorts, the Bison buried the Tigers behind a two headed monster performance by Marshall Bjorklund and Taylor Braun. The two of them each posted 28 points going a combined 20-32 from the field. Jerrelle Benimon performed admirably in defeat with 29 points for the Tigers. After briefly trailing early on in the second half, NDSU’s Lawrence Alexander sparked a 19-8 run by scoring 10 points in the run that brought the score to 62-52 with 10:54 to go in the half. That gave the Bison a lead they would never surrender.
The second game featured the Bison traveling to Utah to play the Utah Valley Wolverines. Again, Taylor Braun paced the way for the Bison, pouring in 20 points and eight assists. Lawrence Alexander had a big game as well, posting 19 points and also going 4-4 from downtown. The story of the game however was the Bison’s complete control in the painted area. The Bison had a 38-14 advantage and absolutely shredded the Wolverines interior defense. Holton Hunsaker had a big game for the Wolverines putting in 20 points including 11 free throws.
After getting 11 days off between Christmas and New Year’s, the Bison came back well rested and continued their winning ways. With a win over Mayville State, the Bison started out 2014 on a good note. The Bison bullied the Comets all game long to the tune of a 51 point thrashing. 96-45 was the final in the friendly confines of the Bison Sports Arena. This game was reigning Summit League 6th man of the year winner Mike Felt’s turn to carry the team. Felt bucketed 30 points behind six long balls. At one point in the first half, Felt froze the Comets by drizzling three bombs that stretched the Bison lead to 29-9.
The Bison dropped their first game in 25 days to the Mastodons of Indiana Purdue- University Fort Wayne. The Mastodons mauled the Bison 82-71 at home in the Hilliard Gates Sports Center. Forward Luis Jacobo killed the Bison from the free throw line going 8-8 at the line and also hit two 3’s to add to his game high 20 points. The Mastodons led the final 35:39 of the game after falling behind 4-2 in the opening minutes. In familiar fashion, Taylor Braun and Marshall Bjorklund led the Bison with a combined 35 points on 59 percent shooting from the field.
The Bison started a new winning streak against the Jaguars of Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis. The Bison bludgeoned the Jags in the second half 52-33 that gave them a final score of 87-64. Kory Brown took his turn in the wheel of carrying the scoring load. Brown nailed 10 of his 14 attempts for a career high 24 points. The Bison made 8 out of 14 long balls, which proved to be the difference as they doubled up on the Jags 24 to 12 from beyond the arc. Donovan Gibbs and Marcellus Barksdale led the Jaguars with 14 points each.
The Bison will be looking to start a new winning streak tonight at home against the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks.