SMSU MEN’S BASKETBALL: Mustangs host Minnesota Morris in home opener on Monday

Independent file photo SMSU’s Cliff McCray looks to drive during their game against St. Olaf College on Oct. 29. SMSU will face Minnesota Morris on Monday.

MARSHALL — The Southwest Minnesota State University men’s basketball team (4-1, 1-0 NSIC), fresh off a 70-69 road victory over the University of Sioux Falls to open Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference play on Tuesday night, will have its 2021-22 home opener this Monday taking on Division III the University of Minnesota Morris (3-4) at the R/A Facility with tip-off slated for 7 p.m.

•SMSU has won four straight games for the first time since winning five in a row during the 2018-19 season.

•SMSU has also won two straight road games for the first time since Dec. 15, 2018, (Minnesota Duluth) and Dec. 30, 2018 (Sioux Falls).

•UMM, a member of the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC), has lost two straight games and is coming off a 94-85 road loss to Mayville State (N.D.) on Tuesday.

Broadcast info

•Monday’s game will be broadcast on 105.1 FM KARL with Ryan Rohlik providing play-by-play.

•Live stats, radio and video broadcasts of all games can be found at SMSUmustangs.com.

Series history vs. Minnesota Morris

•SMSU and Minnesota Morris meet for the 80th time Monday with SMSU leading 42-37. The two schools were both members of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference from 1969-2003.

•SMSU has won the previous 19 games with UMM’s last victory coming during the 1996-97 season.

•The teams last played on Nov. 22, 2019, in Marshall with SMSU earning an 82-59 victory. SMSU is 26-15 all-time in games played in Marshall.

•SMSU head coach Brad Bigler is 3-0 all-time versus Minnesota Morris.


tip-off tidbits

•As of Nov. 23, SMSU ranks 31st in Division II in scoring defense (62.6) and 33rd in rebound margin (+8.6).

•Sophomore Jake Phipps leads the team in scoring (17.0), rebounding (8.2), and field goal pct. (61.8).

•Redshirt freshman Dunwa Omot, who scored a career-high 16 points last Saturday in a victory over Davenport, has connected on a team-high 11 3-pointers. He has made three or more 3-pointers three of five games.

•Sophomore Cliff McCray and senior Kenny Byers each have a team-high 20 assists. McCray has recorded a team-high 11 steals.

•Byers is closing in on becoming the 25th player in team history to score 1,000 career points. He has poured in 973 points in 98 career games, making 378 field goals, including 56 3-pointers and has made 161 free throws.

•SMSU has held all five opponents to 69 or less points, including a season-low 58 in a victory over Newman (Kan.) on Nov. 13.

•SMSU has outrebounded its opponent in all five games.

•SMSU is shooting 46 percent from the field, 36 percent from 3-point range, 79 percent from the free throw line and is plus-8.6 in rebound margin.

•SMSU is averaging 70 points per game, while opponents are averaging 63 points per game.


Minnesota Morris

•Minnesota Morris is 3-4 on the season following a road loss to Mayville State on Nov. 23.

•UMM has played one NSIC team this season, losing 91-57 at Bemidji State on Nov. 19.

•UMM was picked to finish fifth in the eight-team UMAC preseason poll. The Cougars finished 4-6 overall, 3-5 UMAC, in 2020-21.

•Junior Noah Kannegiesser is averaging a team-high 18 ppg with 12 3-pointers this season.

•Junior Ian Carlin is scoring 12.9 ppg, while shooting 64 percent from the field. He also leads the team in rebounding at 5.1 per game.

•Senior Dillon Haider has connected on a team-leading 17 3-pointers and is averaging 11.6 ppg.

•UMM is shooting 51 percent from the field, 39 percent from 3-point range, 66 percent from the free throw line and is plus-2.5 in rebound margin.

•UMM is averaging 86 points per game, while opponents are averaging 82 points per game.

•Head coach Paul Grove is in his 20th season at UMM with a record of 233-260. He was also head coach at Mayville State from 1997-2002.

— Content courtesy

of SMSU Athletic



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