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Viking men’s team pulls away from Mustangs late

December 8, 2012
Marshall Independent

With 78 seconds left in the game, the Southwest Minnesota State University men's basketball team watched Augustana's Cameron McCaffrey break a 62-62 tie, which led to a 70-65 Viking win over the Mustangs in Sioux Falls, S.D., in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference action on Friday.

"Any time you go on the road in the NSIC, it's going to be a grind," said SMSU head coach Brad Bigler. "It's going to be a physical matchup, and at times you are going to have to face adversity."

Jordan Miller had a season-high 24 points, but was just 2-for-10 from behind the arc. Lavione West was the only other SMSU player in double figures, scoring 11 points on the night.

Overall, the Mustangs (4-5 overall, 1-1 NSIC) were only able to connect on 3-of-17 3-point attempts.

"We had absolutely wide open shots in the first half and were not able to take advantage of them," Bigler said. "That was the big factor in the first half, our inability to knock down wide-open shots."

The Mustangs led early in the game, and after trailing by one, 29-28, at the half, used a 12-0 run to take a 51-45 lead with just over eight minutes left in the game.

Fact Box

SMSU (65)

Jordan Miller 10-20 2-2 24, Tramel Barnes 2-4 4-4 8, Vinard Birch 1-2 3-4 5, Matt Zager 2-6 0-0 4, Nick Smith 1-3 0-2 2, Lavione West 5-7 1-5 11, William Giddings 3-3 2-2 9, Shaun Condon 1-5 0-0 2, Jordan Buddenhagen 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 25-52 12-19 65 Three-Pointers 3-17 (Miller 2-10, Giddings 1-1, Zager 0-2, Condon 0-2, Buddenhagen 0-2 Rebounds 29 (Miller 8) Assists 13 (Birch 3, Zager 3) Steals 6 (Smith 3) Blocks 4 (Smith 3) Turnovers 14 Total Fouls 22.

Augustana (70)

Cameron McCaffrey 5-10 5-7 16, Brennan Olson 4-6 5-6 13, Alex Richter 3-5 5-6 11, Daniel Jansen 2-4 0-0 4, Jamall Taylor 0-3 0-0 0, Casey Schilling 4-8 2-2 13, Zach Huisken 1-4 4-6 6, Leif Nomeland 2-7 0-0 4, Yurly Malashenko 0-2 3-4 3, Joe Burt 0-3 0-0 0, Evan Pierce 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 21-53 24-31 70. 3-pointers 4-12 (Schilling 3-4, McCaffrey 1-2, Taylor 0-3 Huisken 0-1, Malashenko 0-1, Burt 0-1 Rebounds 36 (Olson 8) Assists 9 (Huisken 4) Steals 5 (Schilling 3) Blocks 4 (Jansen 2) Turnovers 13 Total Fouls 18.

Halftime Score: Augustana 29, SMSU 28.

"We were able to get some stops and run in transition, get some buckets," Bigler said. "They were sitting in their zone and we were able to execute our plays. When you execute those plays, the opportunities are there, you just have to step up and execute."

The teams traded leads several times in the final six minutes, but Augustana sunk six free throws in the final 48 seconds and held SMSU without a field goal in the final minute of the game, giving the Vikings (6-0 overall, 2-0 NSIC) the 70-65 win.

"That's a big factor and we missed our free throws," Bigler said. "I thought throughout the second half we had chances to cut it down, tie it up or go ahead and we were missing our free throws in the second half."

The Mustangs will be back in action again tonight against Wayne State College in Wayne, Neb., looking to get a win on the road.

"Your goal is to go on the road and to try and go 1-1," Bigler said. "We know how hard it is to win on the road in the NSIC, so our goal is still intact. We have to be able to come out and execute against their variety of zones.

"More than anything we have to be scrappier on the defensive end."



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