Beaver Fever Friday – Max Bjorklund – @BSUBeaversMBB

Beavers to play interdivisional matchups versus Cougars and Mustangs

Bemidji State University men’s basketball will host the University of Sioux Falls and Southwest Minnesota State University Jan. 31-Feb. 1 at BSU Gymnasium with hopes of snapping its longest losing streak of the season. The Beavers open the weekend Friday at 7:30 p.m. against the Cougars before a 5:30 p.m. tip-off Saturday against the Mustangs.

Bemidji State looks to shake off its longest losing streak of the season after falling in a weekend sweep to Minot State University, 74-67, and University of Mary, 78-77, last Friday and Saturday. The Beavers are currently on a six-game losing streak. Minot State used 3-pointers and second-chance points to overcome a Bemidji State lead and take a 39-34 lead into halftime. The Beavers of MiSU hit eight 3-pointers and scored 10 second-chance points over the final 11:35 of the first half before the Beavers of BSU pulled the score to within one possession multiple times in the second half. Over the final 1:31 of game time, BSU went 0-of-3 from the field while MiSU sealed the game going 6-of-6 from the free-throw line.

Bemidji State’s loss to UMary came down to the final seconds as the Marauders put in a 3-pointer and a game-winning dunk to overcome a four-point Beavers lead with 1:22 to play. BSU fought back from a first-half double-digit deficit behind its best shooting performance of the conference season and its best 3-point shooting performance of the season, losing for the fourth time this season when shooting better than its opponent.

Junior guard Nick Wagner led BSU in scoring with 16.5 points per game, including a game-high 23 on 8-of-12 shooting against UMary. Sophomore guard Max Bjorklund followed close behind with 15.5 points per game, including a game-high 19 against Minot State. Bjorklund also led the team with five rebounds against MiSU and went 8-of-9 from the free-throw line.

Bemidji State ranks ninth in the nation and leads the NSIC shooting 41.2 percent from beyond the arc, 19th nationally with 11.1 3-point field goals per game and 20th with 28.83 defensive rebounds per game. The Beavers are one of the best teams offensively in the conference, leading the pack shooting 49.1 percent from the field, and ranking third with 81.4 points per game and 36.9 rebounds per game.

Wagner is second in the conference and ranks 12th nationally with 3.56 3-point field goals per game and ranks second in the NSIC and 18th nationally with 64 total 3-point field goals.

BSU has outscored its opponents in the second half by nearly 100 points this season.