Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - The North Dakota State Bison aim for an
upset as they visit Williams Arena to take on the 13th-ranked Minnesota Golden
Gophers on Tuesday.
North Dakota State is coming off a 72-52 victory over instate rival North
Dakota to improve to 8-2 overall. The win was the third in a row for the
Bison, who are already 1-0 in Summit League action thanks to a win over
Nebraska Omaha. NDSU is 2-3 in its history versus Top 25 opponents, but 0-1
this season due to a 26-point loss at No. 1 Indiana. Coach Saul Phillips has
an impressive squad so far this year, as it is outscoring its opponents by an
average of 15.3 ppg through 10 games.
Tubby Smith's Golden Gophers are off to a tremendous 10-1 start with the only
loss coming from an encounter with the undefeated Duke Blue Devils. Minnesota
picked up its sixth victory in a row on Saturday by downing USC by 14 points
in Los Angeles. Prior to that, the team defeated Summit League foe South
Dakota State by 24 points. Minnesota is averaging 76.5 ppg and holding the
opposition to only 60.6 ppg.
Minnesota and North Dakota State are playing for the second straight season
and the 28th time overall. Minnesota won the game last season, 63-59, to
increase its all-time series lead to 26-1.
The Bison are netting 72.8 ppg on 46.4 percent shooting from the field, while
limiting their opponents to 57.5 ppg and just 37 percent shooting. NDSU was
outshot by North Dakota its last time out, but the Bison committed only six
turnovers and forced 19 to cruise to the 20-point decision. Junior shooting
guard Taylor Braun led the team with 22 points, while center Marshall
Bjorklund and forward TrayVonn Wright tallied 13 and 10 points, respectively.
Braun is leading the team with 15.9 points and 6.3 rebounds per contest, while
Bjorklund is adding 11.4 ppg.
Smith picked up his 500th career win in his team's victory over the Trojans on
Saturday. The Gophers held the Trojans to a 1-of-11 mark from beyond the arc
and held a 40-32 advantage in the rebounding battle. Andre Hollins led four
Minnesota players in double figures with 14 points, while Rodney Williams
registered a double-double with 13 points and 11 boards. Senior forward Trevor
Mbakwe continued to be a spark off the bench with 12 points. The balanced
attack is a regular occurrence for the team as Andre Hollins (13.7 ppg),
Williams (12.9 ppg, 6.3 rpg), Austin Hollins (11.7 ppg), and Joe Coleman (10.5
ppg) are all scoring in double figures regularly.
The Sports Network