Coach Garner’s Career Ends in Opening Round of NSAA

Despite keeping it close throughout most of the game, the Dakota State men’s basketball team was unable to overcome a late run from Dickinson State, losing in the opening round of the NSAA Tournament 72-60. 

Early on, both teams traded leads and runs before eventually taking a 29-29 tie into halftime. 

Coming out of halftime, the Trojans struck first, before the Blue Hawks answered with a 12 point run. The Trojans were able to get back within three points at 50-47, but from there the Blue Hawks went on a nine point run to take control of the game. 

The Trojans could get no closer than six points for the rest of the game after getting outscored 43-31 in the second half, as they lost on the road 72-60. 

Deshawn Kelly led the Trojans with 11 points. Ethan Damerum and Ben Hoverson each added 10 points. Damerum had five rebounds, three blocks, and three assists. Chris Morales scored nine points and grabbed four rebounds.

Sam Muller tallied eight points and four rebounds for Dakota State.  

Kose Egbule led the Blue Hawks with 13 points, five rebounds, and three assists. 

Dakota State shot 40 percent overall from the field (24-of-60 field goals) compared to Dickinson State 42.6 percent (23-of-54 field goals).  The Trojans hit 6-of-19 3-pointers, while the Blue Hawks were 5-of-15 from the 3-point arc.

Dakota State ended their season at 12-17 overall record.  Tuesday’s contest marked the end of long-time head coach Gary Garner’s 14-years as head coach at Dakota State, where he holds the second all-time men’s basketball coaching wins in program history with 198 victories.