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Late 3-pointers carry Peacocks to narrow win over Beaver men

Bemidji State's Pat Cassidy drives past Upper Iowa's Mike Lafrenz Saturday night at the BSU?Gymnasium. BSU?Photo

The Bemidji State men's basketball team had no answers for Upper Iowa's hot shooting down the stretch Saturday night in an 83-80 loss at the BSU Gymnasium.

After giving up a six-point lead late in the game, the Peacocks drilled a pair of 3-point shots to earn the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference win.

"Our defense failed us tonight," said BSU coach Matt Bowen. "We just did not have an answer for them."

The Peacocks built a six-point lead with just under six minutes remaining. The Beavers then went on a 14-8 run to tie the game with 1:28 remaining. But the Peacocks kept their poise and hit a pair of 3-pointers.

"Give them credit, they had some guys who have not hit threes all year step up and hit threes tonight," said Bowen. "They hit two threes tonight at the absolute worst time for us. We have to come up with more stops and better defensive rebounding to allow us to win these games, and we just did not have it tonight. That is something I certainly have to find the answers for."

The first half featured a face-paced offensive game. Each team had shot above 50 percent from the floor and had just five turnovers. The Beavers (4-4, 1-3 NSIC) were more successful at the free throw line, giving them a 40-38 lead after one half of play.

"We came out with a lot of energy," said sophomore guard Lance Rongstad. "It has been a goal this year to come and play harder and play faster than the other team. I think we did that well, but we are continuously getting hurt on the offensive rebounds."

Beaver forward James Ellisor achieved a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds. Rongstad added a game-high 22 points and eight rebounds.

"They are a good team," said Rongstad. "They are well coached and they play hard. They come out with a lot of energy."

Bemidji State will return to action at 8 p.m. Friday at Northern State.

UPPER IOWA: Lesan 5-11 6-6 19; Bestul 5-10 4-4 16; Wentzien 6-7 0-2 12; Kramer 2-2 4-5 9; Elgin 3-4 0-0 8; Arnold 3-7 1-2 8; Lafrenz 3-4 0-3 6; Hook 1-2 0-0 2; Lafrenz 1-4 0-1 2; Hughes 0-2 1-2 1; Gross 0-0 0-0 0; Collins 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 29-56 16-25 83.

BEMIDJI STATE: Rongstad 5-6 10-11 22; Ellisor 7-10 7-8 21; Tesdahl 6-8 1-2 16; Cassidy 4-10 5-5 13; Lindstrom 1-3 0-0 3; Walters 1-5 1-2 3; Kinnell 1-3 0-0 2; Shepherd 0-0 0-0 0; Schalow 0-0 0-0 0; Lendl 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 25-48 24-28 80.

Upper Iowa 38 45 - 83

Bemidji State 40 40 - 80

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