Beaver Fever Friday – Mohamed Kone – @BSUBeaversMBB

Men’s Basketball concludes 2021-22 season Feb. 17, 19 versus UMD, SCSU

Bemidji State University men’s basketball concludes its 2021-22 season Feb. 17 and 19 with meetings against No. 13 University of Minnesota Duluth and St. Cloud State University. The Beavers and Bulldogs open the weekend Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in Duluth, Minn., before senior day and the season finale Saturday at 4 p.m. in Bemidji, Minn.

The Series vs. Minnesota Duluth

Minnesota Duluth leads the all-time series against Bemidji State, 96-48.
The Bulldogs took the first game of the season series, 87-64, Dec. 2, 2021 in Bemidji.
Minnesota Duluth has now won two straight after two consecutive wins by Bemidji State in the series.
Bemidji State and Minnesota Duluth first met Feb. 21, 1931, a 28-26 win by BSU.

BSU was handed a weekend road sweep with losses of 83-60 at Northern State University and 83-77 at Minnesota State University Moorhead during its last weekend of action.

Heading into the final weekend of the season before the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Tournament, Bemidji State ranks eighth in the NSIC North Division behind St. Cloud State and the University of Minnesota Crookston.

Turnovers proved to be the difference-maker in Friday’s weekend-opener against Northern State as Bemidji State gave away 17 turnovers compared to eight for NSU. Following an 8-7 lead by BSU less than five minutes into play, NSU went on a 12-4 run and came back soon after with a 16-0 run to take a 37-16 lead. BSU trailed 53-27 at halftime and pulled to within 20 points early in the second half. NSU turned BSU’s turnovers into 20 points and also hit 12 3-pointers compared to just three for Bemidji State.

The forward duo of John Sutherland and Dalton Albrecht led the Beavers in scoring with 32 combined points, including a team-high 18 from Sutherland on 9-of-12 shooting. Albrecht led BSU with nine rebounds and went 5-of-5 shooting.

MSU Moorhead led for the majority of the game Saturday as Bemidji State fought back from a double-digit deficit in the second half. After trailing by a game-high 15 points, the Beavers scored 13 unanswered points midway through the second half and cut its deficit to two, 66-64. MSUM hit a 3-pointer off an offensive rebound to snap the BSU streak and held on to a four-point lead through the rest of the game.

Senior Derek Thompson broke BSU’s all-time rebounding record midway through the second half and ended the game with 699 career boards, surpassing Steve Vogel (1975-79) for most in program history. Senior Travis Bianco led BSU with 21 points and has scored at least 20 points in four of his last six games.

BSU will honor four seniors on senior day Saturday, including Bianco, Thompson, Tyler Behrendt and Gare Ewefada.

Thompson cemented his status among the all-time BSU greats as the program’s leader in career rebounds (699) and ranks third in program history in scoring (1,520).

Scouting No. 13 Minnesota Duluth

The Bulldogs are led by fourth-year head coach Justin Wieck who is 65-30 with the program.

Minnesota Duluth (21-4, 14-4 NSIC) are facing a two-game losing streak for the second time this season after losses of 75-71 at the University of Mary and 80-63 at Minot State University.

UMD leads the NSIC in scoring offense (86.7) and field goal percentage defense (.422), ranks second in field goal percentage (.517), fourth in rebounding defense (31.9), sixth in rebounding offense (36.2) and turnover margin (1.40) and seventh in scoring defense (71.7).

The Bulldogs feature two of the NSIC’s top four scorers, including Austin Andrews with 19.2 points per game and Drew Blair with 18.5 points per game. Andrews also ranks second in the league with 9.7 rebounds per game and in field goal percentage at .654.