Huskies men’s basketball by No. 9 Dragons Sunday
HOUGHTON — The Michigan Tech Huskies men’s basketball team fought hard against No. 9 nationally-ranked Minnesota State-Moorhead, outscoring the Dragons 48-38 in the second half before ultimately falling, 85-77, at the SDC Gym on Sunday afternoon.
“The first half we saw some of the same problems we had yesterday,” Huskies coach Josh Buettner said. “We fought – that was an easy enough game to lose by 30 or 40 and we came and thought we had some chances. A couple of things didn’t go our way, but if you don’t put yourself in that big of a hole, you have a decent chance. We did a pretty good job taking care of the basketball, and I think we did a good job on the offensive glass and that shows the fight.”
In a game that saw each team score over 40 points in a half, Moorhead (6-0, 0-0 NSIC) poured on 47 points in the opening half at a clip of 60.7 percent from the field and 10-for-12 from the free throw line.
The Dragons would lead from the jump, climbing to their biggest lead at the 6:40 mark, showing a 24-point advantage (36-12) off a Jamir Price 3-pointer. Despite the poor shooting half for the Huskies, MTU went 9-for-11 from the charity stripe to close the half down 47-29. The game would showcase 48 total personal fouls and 59 free-throw attempts between the two teams.
The Huskies (1-5, 0-0 GLIAC) cut the lead to 10 points at the 13:06 mark as Marcus Tomashek connected on a three-point play after hitting a layup while being fouled to make it 57-47. Minutes later, Michigan Tech would cut the lead to four points for the first time since the opening minute of action, with Pete Calcaterra getting a layup and a 3-pointer with Dawson Nordgaard chipping in four points off the low block to make it 62-58 with 9:13 remaining.
The Dragons quickly extended their lead after going two-for-two from the charity stripe and connecting on a 3-pointer on the following possession to make it a nine-point game again.
Calcaterra and Nordgaard would come up big for the Huskies again, combining for seven points to make it a two-point game following a Nordgaard and-one with under six minutes remaining.
The double-bonus would prove to favor Moorhead, as the Dragons pulled away with six made free-throws down the stretch to decide the game 85-77.
Tomashek continued his offensive dominance, having a team-leading 22 points. Calcaterra neared his career-high, scoring 20 points for a season-best while grabbing six rebounds to lead the Huskies. MTU also saw notable performances from Nordgaard and Tyler Robarge. Nordgaard went 6-for-6 from the field for 14 points to go with two rebounds, while Robarge added 10 points and three rebounds.
Moorhead saw five in double-figure scoring, led by Jacob Beeninga with 19 points. Dane Zimmer accounted for 10 points and a team-leading eight rebounds.
Michigan Tech will take a brief hiatus from competition, returning on Thursday, Dec. 7, to open conference play as the Huskies welcome Saginaw Valley State to the SDC Gym slated for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff.