Tech men lose to SW Minnesota State 65-52

MOORHEAD, Minn. — The Michigan Tech men’s basketball team fell in Game 1 of the Microtel Classic Friday night to No. 15 Southwest Minnesota State 65-52. The Huskies held the advantage for the majority of the first half and into the second, but a 16-2 run by the Mustangs over a span of six minutes midway through the second half turned the tide of the game.

“I thought we were average in the first half and in the second half we really struggled,” Michigan Tech coach Kevin Luke said. “We got exposed in every facet of the game: offense, defense, rebounding and they out-toughed us. Hopefully, we can learn from tonight’s game and get ready to play against another really good team in Minnesota State Moorhead tomorrow.”

Tech created its largest lead of the half at 27-19 on a 3-pointer by freshman Isaac Appleby and a jumper in the paint from sophomore Ryan Schuller.

Momentum then swung in the Mustangs favor when Ryan Bruggeman began the scoring run on a layup in the paint. Lee followed with another layup and then gave SMSU the lead at 48-46 on a triple with 11:21 to play. By the end of the scoring burst, the Mustangs had constructed a 57-48 edge on a Bruggeman 3-pointer with 7:17 to go. The Mustangs didn’t allow the Huskies to make a counter-attack before closing out the night.

Michigan Tech had three players in double figures, led by Bryan Heath with 13 points followed by Appleby and KyleMonroe with 10 points each. Uren chipped in seven points, while he and Monroe grabbed a team-best five rebounds. Grazulis nearly reached double digits with eight points. As a team, the Huskies were 23 of 52 from the field (44 percent), 4 of 16 from behind the arc (25 percent), and 2 of 4 at the free-throw line.

The Huskies will be back on the court Saturday when they take on Minnesota State Moorhead on Day 2 of the Microtel Classic. The tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m. EST.