Sioux Falls, S.D. – The Northern State University men's basketball team advanced to the semifinal round of the NSIC/Sanford Health Basketball Tournament, following a 79-76 victory over the University of Sioux Falls on Sunday. The Wolves improve to 24-6 overall this season, with their second postseason victory of the year.
Northern trailed by six with 4:41 to play in the first half, however went on a 6-0 run in the final two minutes of play to gain a 45-40 halftime lead. The Cougars out-scored the Wolves in the second, 36-34, however the 5-point first half lead held for NSU.
The Wolves out-shot the Cougars at a 49.1 percent clip from the floor and 31.6 percent clip from the 3-point line. NSU went 19-of-29 from the free throw line, and combined for six made 3-pointers, 34 rebounds, 13 assists, eight steals, and one block. Northern tallied 40 points in the paint, 29 points off the bench, 14 points off nine offensive boards, 13 points off turnovers, and five fast break points.
Parker Fox led four in double figures for the Wolves with 17 points. The redshirt freshman shot 75.0 percent from the floor and added a team leading eight rebounds, as well as three assists, one block, and one steal. Gabe King was second on the team and led the starters with 15 points and three rebounds. The junior shot 55.6 percent from the floor, and knocked down 3-of-6 from the 3-point line.
Andrew Kallman and Ian Smith rounded out those in double digits with 14 and 13 points respectively. Kallman tallied five rebounds, two assists, and a team high three steals. Smith led the team with five assists, and notched six rebounds and two steals. The senior hit 6-of-13 from the floor, while the sophomore drained 9-of-10 from the foul line.
Justin Decker and Bo Fries tallied six and two points respectively in their starting roles. Fries appeared in just three minutes after an injury. Decker shot 50.0 percent from the floor and added one assist and one rebound.
Mason Stark notched eight points off the bench for NSU, hitting 4-of-7 from the field. The redshirt freshman added two rebounds, one assist, and one steal. Cole Dahl and Jordan Belka grabbed the final points for NSU with three and one respectively. Dahl recorded three bounds and one steal as well.
Northern will face Winona State tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. from the Sanford Pentagon. Winona entered the tournament as the fourth seed from the South Division and defeated Minot State and Minnesota Crookston.