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Men's basketball: Beavers return to work with win over Upper Iowa

BSU’s Brock Lutes helped BSU belt Upper Iowa 102-89 Saturday. Lutes led all scorers with 30 points. BSU Photo Services

BEMIDJI — After a tough loss, sometimes it is hard to predict how a team will rebound.

Saturday at the Bemidji State gym the BSU men’s basketball team did not allow the effects of Friday’s painful 87-86 overtime loss to Winona State to linger as the Beavers bounced back with a 102-89 win over Upper Iowa Saturday.

“It feels so good,” BSU head coach Mike Boschee said of the win. “After you lose a game like that, you almost start to wonder if you will win another game. We did not feel sorry for ourselves like I was worried about.”

“It was definitely important to bounce back,” junior Brock Lutes added. “You can be kind of hung over after a loss like that. Losing to a great team like that in overtime definitely hurts.”

BSU’s shooting efficiency helped overcome its 20 turnovers and the 13 three-pointers made by Upper Iowa.

“We did not guard them as well as I would have liked,” Boschee said. “That is to Upper Iowa’s credit, though. They made it hard for us. I guess you can say we outscored them.”

Jake Schalow connected on back-to-back three-pointers to help the Beavers grab a 15-10 lead after five minutes of play.

A three-pointer from Zach Noreen and a layup from DJ Hervy helped push the BSU lead to nine points at 25-16.

Upper Iowa would cut the deficit to as low as one point at 29-28, before BSU built it back to 41-32..

Lutes closed the first half with a layup to send the Beavers to the locker room with a 49-42 lead.

Lutes scored 16 of his game-high 30 points in the first half.

“I was pretty off last night, so I just got back to the basics and spent about 30 minutes just shooting in front of the hoop to get my stroke back,” Lutes said.

“He is so good in the open court,” Boschee said. “He creates so many opportunities for everyone else when he runs the floor like he did tonight.”

A third three-pointer from Schalow gave BSU its first double-digit lead at 63-53 and baskets from Schalow and Lutes helped push the lead to 18 points, BSU’s largest lead of the game, at 89-71.

The Beavers kept their lead in the double digits for the remainder of the game.

“I think it shows good character,” Lutes said of being able to hold off Upper Iowa. “We should have made more stops on defense, but credit to our offense for being able to stay in front.”

Schalow and Noreen added 22 points each. Michael Farrington dished out a career-high 11 assists in 24 minutes of action off the bench.

“I love playing with Mike,” Lutes said. “He’s like the energizer bunny off the bench. It’s always fun to play with someone who is always looking to set you up with a pass.”

“I just really like how he can control the team,” Boschee said of his point guard. “When you are playing a team as aggressive as Upper Iowa, you need a point guard that can be equally aggressive and make good decisions to find guys for easy opportunities.”

BSU (8-4, 5-3 NSIC) returns to action next weekend when it travels to Augustana and Wayne State.

Upper Iowa (89): Woods 6-11 3-8 15; Lang 5-13 0-0 14; Roth 6-9 0-2 13; Weeber 4-8 3-3 13; Hay 4-10 2-2; Hanna 2-3 2-3 8; Pagel 2-6 2-4 7; Lenhart 2-4 0-0 6. Totals 31-67 14-24 89.

Bemidji State (102): Lutes 12-16 4-4 30; Noreen 9-14 2-3 22; Schalow 4-6 11-11 22; Hervy 3-5 2-2 9; Floyd 4-4 0-1 9; Rosenbloom 2-4 2-3 6; Farrington 1-7 2-2 4. Totals 35-56 23-26 102.

Halftime: Bemidji State 49, Upper Iowa 42