Blue Hawks end season on high noteThe Dickinson State men’s basketball team was celebrating senior night. A senior put together one of his best efforts of the season to get them the victory.
By: Royal McGregor, The Dickinson Press
The Dickinson State men’s basketball team was celebrating senior night.
A senior put together one of his best efforts of the season to get them the victory.
Jarek Hansen finished with a game-high 19 points to lead the Blue Hawks past Montana State-Northern 64-49 in a Frontier Conference game on Saturday at Scott Gymnasium.
“Jarek is such a scorer,” DSU head coach Ty Orton said. “He’s a very strong player. He was driving well tonight and when we drove, we really caused some problems for Northern.”
Though the Blue Hawks (12-18, 5-9 Frontier) didn’t make the Frontier postseason tournament, DSU senior John Hanstad said he was happy to win the final game of the season.
Hanstad finished with six points and came into the final two games of the season with 171 career 3-pointers. He needed 12 to break DSU’s all-time 3-pointers record held by former teammate Nathan Lebstock, but ended with 175 to put him second on the career all-time list.
“If I had to pick anyone to be behind, it would be Nate,” Hanstad said. “It definitely feels good to win the last two games. I don’t think we’ve won senior night in three or four years.”
Orton said Hanstad, Hansen and fellow seniors James Hayden, Destry Sterkel and Johnie Sanders will all be missed next season.
DSU held a 27-22 halftime lead.
The Lights continued to fight back in the second half until DSU Sanders stamped out an 8-3 MSUN run with a two-handed dunk. Sanders supplied 10 points and five rebounds.
From there, the Blue Hawks slowly increased their lead to nine points. In the final minute, DSU stepped to the free-throw line to sink six straight. The Blue Hawks were 22 of 47 (47 percent) from the field, while MSUN were 18 of 47 (38 percent).
“We played hard,” Hanstad said. “We were executing the game plan to a tee. It’s just great to be part of it.”
DSU junior Robbie Morey gave the team a spark off the bench — though he is a regular starter, the Blue Hawks’ five seniors started Saturday — scoring 16 points and nabbing three steals.
“He just played,” Orton said. “He’s so good on the drive, he’s so good with the ball and he sees the floor so well.”
The Lights (22-8, 10-6 Frontier) had a tough go on offense in the first 10 minutes.
After Will Perry scored the opening basket at 18:29, MSUN had nearly an eight-minute dry spell. Corbin Pearson knocked down a jumper at the 10:35 mark to get the Lights going again.
“Dickinson did a good job on defense and we didn’t execute very well,” MSUN head coach Shawn Huse said. “That’s a recipe for disaster on the road.”
DSU, on the other hand, had no problem finding scoring chances.
The Blue Hawks built up as much as a 15-4 lead. Jarek Hansen led the charge with five points, while Johnie Sanders added four.
“There was such high emotion and I think it sunk in after we lost at (Montana) Tech that this was it,” Orton said. “They knew they were going to lay everything on floor and the seniors took over.”
However, in the final 10 minutes of the first half, the Lights started to chip away at DSU’s lead. MSUN got within three points, 25-22, with less than four minutes in the first half.
The Blue Hawk clamped down on defense in the final minutes to take their five-point halftime lead.
“We finally started executing better and making shots,” Huse said. “That’s what you have to do to put points on the board.”
MONTANA STATE-NORTHERN (22-8, 10-6 FRONITER): Corbin Pearson 6-9 2-2 14, Roshawn West 4-6 0-0 9, Alfie Miller 3-11 0-0 9, Jesse Vaughan 0-3 0-0 0, Devin Jackson 3-9 1-1 8, Alan Brown 1-5 5-6 7, Will Perry 1-3 0-0 2, Dontae Clark 0-0 0-0 0, Savion Udeh 0-0 0-0 0, Mike LaValley 0-1 0-0 0. Totals: 18-47 8-9 49.
DICKINSON STATE (12-18, 5-9 FRONTIER): Johnie Sanders 5-12 0-0 10, Jarek Hansen 7-11 3-4 19, Destry Sterkel 0-1 0-0 0, James Hayden 2-3 4-4 8, John Hanstad 1-4 3-3 6, Ty Ackelson 0-3 0-0 0, Ryan Sullivan 0-3 1-2 1, Robbie Morey 5-6 6-6 16, Brock Boos 1-2 0-0 2, Phillip Johnson, Jr. 1-2 0-0 2. Totals: 22-47 17-19 64.
Halftime: DSU 27-22. Total fouls: MSN 14, DSU 9. 3-point goals: MSN 5-24 (Miller 3-9, West 1-2, Jackson 1-5, Vaughan 0-3, Brown 0-4, LaValley 0-1), DSU 3-13 (Hansen 2-4, Hanstad 1-3, Sterkel 0-1, Hayden 0-1, Ackelson 0-1, Sullivan 0-1, Morey 0-1, Boos 0-1). Rebounds: MSN 25 (West 4, Perry 4), DSU 29 (three with five). Assists: MSN 9 (Vaughan 3, Miller 3), DSU 8 (Hayden 2, Ackelson 2). Steals: MSN 7 (Vaughn 2, Brown 2), DSU 10 (Morey 3). Turnovers: MSN 14 (Jackson 5), DSU 12 (Sanders 4).