After shutting Northern State out, the University of Mary left the door open in the end, but the Wolves couldn't get through it.
NSU missed its last four shots in the final 30 seconds to lose the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference game 68-65 Saturday in Aberdeen. NSU trailed by 12 points early in the second half, but used its defense to work its way back into the game.
Northern is a good basketball team that is capable of playing with anyone in this league, said Mary coach Randall Herbst, whose team is tied for second in the NSIC with a 9-4 record. It just hasn't always gone their way, but they had their opportunities tonight. We got lucky because they hurt us on dribble penetration and got some things done in the paint.
Jared Hannigan's three-pointer with 2:42 left gave the Wolves their first lead of the game.
In the second half, we really competed, said NSU coach Paul Sather. We got 14 offensive rebounds and did a good job of coming back on them. We just have to keep getting better. We are really close to closing that gap on teams, but that last little bit is the toughest part to close up. We need everyone together to do everything they can every single day to help this team get better. Each one of us needs to keep fighting for that effort and this team.
In the end, Mary seniors Anthony Moody and Eric Erdmann finished strong, sharing in all of their team's final 10 points. They also led their team sharing in 39 points and 20 rebounds.
In the first half, Erdmann hurt us, said Sather. We made it too easy on them and didn't compete the way we needed to. In the second half, we held them to 33 percent from the field and we did a lot better job defensively. Especially Marty (Gregor) on Erdmann. Marty made life a lot tougher for Erdmann in that half. But offensively, we did a lot of things to hurt ourselves like missing a lot of layups.
Herbst liked the way his seniors stepped up in the end, but said his team was fortunate to win. We got up to that double-digit lead, but Northern came storming back on us. We lost our composure, took some quick possessions, didn't dig in defensively, missed free throws and had a lack of communication at times. But in the end, we were able to accomplish just enough to win.
Gregor got seven points to go with his stellar defensive effort. Jared Hannigan added 11 points on three of five three-point shooting. It was among their best games of the season.
The Wolves also got a solid game from Dustin Tetzlaff, especially on the boards with 16 to go along with his 15 points. The Wolves will continue play in the NSIC in Minnesota next weekend with games against Duluth Friday and Bemidji Saturday.
UNIVERSITY OF MARY (13-4, 9-4): Anthony Moody 8-17 3-4 19, Jordan Wilhelm 3-10 0-1 7, Jalen Jaspers 1-4 0-0 3, Eric Erdmann 8-16 3-6 20, Damon Smith 3-3 0-2 6, Mark Bakkum 1-2 6-6 9, Baley Johnson 0-1 0-0 0, Alex Dorr 1-1 2-2 4. Totals 25-54 14-21 68.
NORTHERN STATE (7-10, 3-10): Tom Parks 4-12 0-0 11, David Lane 3-9 2-2 9, Derek Hoellein 0-3 0-0 0, Collin Pryor 3-10 1-1 7, Dustin Tetzlaff 5-16 5-10 15, Brett Newton 0-1 2-2 2, Jared Hannigan 4-7 0-0 11, Tydan Storrusten 1-3 0-0 3, Marty Gregor 2-5 3-5 7. Totals 22-66 13-20 65.
Halftime - UM 41-32. Three-pointers - UM 4-19 (Moody 0-5, Wilhelm 1-6, Jaspers 1-3, Erdmann 1-2, Bakkum 1-2, Johnson 0-1); NSU 8-22 (Parks 3-9, Lane 1-2, Hoellein 0-3, Pryor 0-1, Hannigan 3-5, Storrusten 1-2). Total fouls - UM 16; NSU 23. Fouled out - No one. Rebounds - UM 39 (Erdmann 11); NSU 41 (Tetzlaff 16). Blocked shots - UM 4 (Erdmann 2); NSU 0. Turnovers -UM 13; NSU 12. Assists - UM 6 (Moody 2, Wilhelm 2); NSU 11 (Lane 5). Steals - UM 6 (Jaspers 3); NSU 7 (Parks 2). Officials - Lonnie Graver, Jim Ricketts, Isaiah Conrad. Attendance - 3,313.