Beavers travel to face Cougars and Mustangs in interdivisional games

The Bemidji State University men’s basketball program travels Friday and Saturday to conclude a four-game road trip while facing University of Sioux Falls and Southwest Minnesota State University. The Beavers open the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference South Division games at 8 p.m. Jan. 12 against the Cougars followed by the finale at 7 p.m. Jan. 13 against the Mustangs.

The young series between Bemidji State and Sioux Falls continues Friday with the seventh all-time meeting between the two programs. The Cougars lead the all-time series that began Nov. 20, 2011, 4-2. After BSU won the first two games of the series, USF has won the last four, including a 78-71 final last season in Bemidji, Minn.

The trio of Sharif Black, Jai’Vionne Green and Christian Pekarek each scored in double-digits during last season’s meeting against USF, as all three combined for 42 points. Green led the way with 16 points off the bench while Pekarek followed with 14 and Black came in with 12. Pekarek also dished out six assists and sank three 3-pointers.

The Bemidji State/Southwest Minnesota State series dates back to Dec. 7, 1968 which began with eight BSU wins in the first nine meetings. The Mustangs lead the all-time series, 52-41, while the Beavers won the last meeting, 96-86, on Jan. 14, 2017.

BSU overcame a 48-42 deficit at halftime to upset SMSU, who had received votes in the NABC Top 25 Poll, and outscore the Mustangs in the second half, 54-38. All five BSU starters scored in double-figures, led by Green with 25 which was a career high for the sophomore at the time. Pekarek recorded a double-double with 19 points and 10 assists while sophomore guard Jacob McNallan scored 11 points and sophomore forward Logan Bader recorded 10.