The Trojan Men’s Basketball team (10-7 overall, 0-1 NSAA) had their comeback efforts fall short against Bellevue, losing 69-68 on the road.
The North Star Athletic Association opener between the Trojans and the Bruins ended up being a game you needed an extra bag of popcorn for. What seemed like it was going to be a blowout after the first half. The Bruins were up by as many as 19 in the first half. Though it ended up coming down to the final seconds.
Trojans controlled the second half out of the halftime break and won the second half 40-27. A foul in the final seconds from Emarr Vinson of Bellevue sent Josh Lewis to the free throw line with 2.4 seconds and a chance to tie it up. Hit the first, but missed the second out of the timeout by Bellevue. Ended up rebounding his own missed rebound, got a shot off and it missed. Though it was rebounded by Emmanuel Akpan who tipped it in, but it was late.
TJ Fritz for Bellevue was a big part of why the scoring blew open in the first half. He led the Bruins with 22 points in the game, with 18 coming in the first half and all off the bench. No other Bruin was in double figures, but a pair of players followed Fritz with nine points each. Those two being Jaden Phillips and Liam Thompson.
Dakota State had a strong night from Mison Coilton. He posted a season-highs in scoring with 20 points to lead the Trojan and a season-high five steals. Akpan added 12 points and Louis finished with 10 points and three steals off the bench. Louis was a game-high +19 in box plus/minus off the bench.
DSU committed a season-low six turnovers in the game, with no player having multiple turnovers. Their biggest advantage was in the battle in the paint, winning it 36-24. This was a game you can chalk up as a bad loss, but flush the first half you allowed from Fritz.
Next the Trojans will be on the road again this weekend traveling to Valley City and Dickinson in North Dakota. They’ll play the back end of a doubleheader starting with Valley City State on Friday at 7:30pm and Dickinson State on Saturday at 6pm.