Ethan Guske hit a three-pointer with 46 seconds left to give Augustana a 63-60 lead and led to a 66-64 defeat for the Northern State men’s basketball team Wednesday night in Wachs Arena in the first round of the NSIC/Sanford Health Tournament.
Northern (18-11) battled back from a 12-point deficit, 58-46, with 10:39 to go to tie the ballgame at 60-60 with 56 seconds to go on a Seth Bachand layup in the paint. Yuriy Malashenko hit a pair of free throws with 22 seconds remaining to give Augustana (16-13) a 65-60 lead. Tydan Storrusten brought the Wolves back within two points with a three-pointer with 18 seconds left. After a Casey Schilling free throw, Storrusten was fouled with three seconds to go and NSU trailing 66-63. Storrusten made the first free-throw attempt and missed the second on purpose but Daniel Jansen grabbed the rebound for the Vikings to clinch the victory.
Bachand was Northern’s workhorse in the loss as he finished with 20 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks. The 13 boards tied a career-high and the five rejections set a new best for Bachand. Storrusten added 11 points, five rebounds and three assists for Northern. Darin Peterka added nine points and Skye Warwick chipped in with eight.
After a back-and-forth beginning to the game, Augustana took control toward the end of the first half and led by 33-23 with 2:28 to go. The Wolves went on a nice 12-5 run to end the half and went into the break trailing by just three, 38-35.
Both teams struggled to shoot on the night as NSU hit 35.7 percent (20-for-56) from the floor while the Vikings shot 19-of-53 (35.8 percent). The Vikings did hit nine three-pointers in the contest and hit 43 percent from deep. Northern shot just 5-of-15 (33 percent) from beyond the arc. NSU made 19-of-24 (79.2 percent) from the line on the night while Augie went 19-for-27 (70.4 percent).
The Wolves held a 40-38 edge in the rebound battle and a 30-16 advantage in points in the paint. The Augustana bench was the difference in the game however, as it scored 32 points and the Northern bench scored 18. Both teams were sloppy with the ball as the Wolves scored 21 points off 17 Augustana turnovers and the Vikings scored 19 off 16 NSU turnovers.
Northern finishes its season going 18-11 overall and went 10-6 at home on the year. The Wolves are now 1-2 in the NSIC Tournament under Head Coach Paul Sather. Seniors Jared Hannigan and Trent Zomer played their final game for NSU Wednesday night.
Courtesy: Northern State Kevin DeVries