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Blue Hawks handle Jamestown: Ackelson scores 25 as Dickinson State defeats University of Jamestown

Press Photo by Meaghan MacDonald Dickinson State senior Isiah Thomas, right, looks to pass during a nonconference game against the University of Jamestown’s Matt Wingo on Friday at Scott Gymnasium.

Everything finally clicked for the Dickinson State men’s basketball team.

After its low point of the season — a 33-point loss to Rocky Mountain College on Dec. 2 — the Blue Hawks responded by defeating the University of Jamestown 97-83 on Friday night at Scott Gymnasium.

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After playing to a halftime tie, DSU shot 20 of 28 (71 percent) from the field in the second half and pulled away late for the much-needed win.

“Right from warm ups, we just brought intensity,” senior guard Ty Ackelson said. “Everyone focused on this week of practice and the thing we did best in this game was we carried over our practices into the game.”

An 11-day break between games served DSU well. It came out with a ferocity that had been lacking in previous games and things simply went right.

Senior guard Brock Boos’ shooting in the first half was near precise and kick-started DSU’s offense. Boos shot 4 for 6, all from 3-point range.

Ackelson scored 15 first-half points — he made all seven of his free throws before halftime — en route to a game- and career-high 25 points. Boos finished with 14, followed by junior guards Tevin Russell and Juston Goodwin with 17 and 13 points, respectively.

“It was a good team effort,” Boos said. “We played hard and it was the most fun we’ve had all season.”

With 13 minutes left, DSU junior forward Tevin Russell hit a 3-pointer, but Jimmies junior guard Taylor Newton responded with a 3-pointer of his own to cut into the Blue Hawks’ lead, 59-57.

From there, the Blue Hawks (3-6) began to pull away, outscoring the Jimmies 38-26 the rest of the way.

“Once things started going good on offense, we kind of just rolled with it and kept going to play together, kept giving each other the ball and just had a good game,” Boos said.

Jamestown head coach Justin Wieck said when DSU warmed up, his team’s defense wore down which cost them the game.

“I thought we played pretty well offensively first half,” Wieck said. “But we broke down defensively in the second half and (DSU) made some good shots and really exposed us on the defensive end in the second half.”

Jamestown (5-9) competed however, keeping the Blue Hawks working all game.

Jimmies sophomore guard Brequan Tucker had finished with a team-high 20 points.

The teams played at an even level, with the 10 lead changes and six ties.

With just 1 minute, 15 seconds remaining in the first half, senior post Isiah Thomas hit a jump shot to put DSU ahead. Thirty seconds later, Tucker responded with a 3-pointer to end the half tied 43-43.

Jamestown shot clean in the first half, shooting 17 of 29 (58 percent). However, the Jimmies’ touch began to dwindle in the second half as they connected on 42 percent (14 of 33) after halftime.

DSU head coach Ty Orton said the team worked on finding each player’s role during the time off.

“It takes a while for things to click when you have such good kids and high-character kids,” he said. “I think it’s taken a while and we needed a little time off, and they got a couple days off. They were watching film and had a couple sharp practices where they focused on their fundamentals and started to see the roles they need to play in.”

DSU hosts the University of Winnipeg on Sunday afternoon at Scott Gymnasium. The women’s team plays at 2 p.m. followed by the men at 4 p.m.

Ackleson said it’s far easier to prepare for a game after a win and he hopes the boost of confidence gives the Blue Hawks a shot at another victory before Christmas break.

“If we carry over our intensity and our effort, results are going to show on the final scoreboard,” Ackleson said. “It’s going to be big time because we have a big tournament nine days after finals and it’s going to be big just going in with high confidence, because that’s what we need.”

JAMESTOWN (5-9): Matt Wingo 1-2 0-0 2, Jacob Havron 0-3 0-0 0, Brequan Tucker 7-15 5-6 20, Breshion Tucker 5-8 2-4 12, Mark Hoge 2-6, 4-4 8, Taylor Newton 4-10 3-4 14, Logan Brown 0-2 0-0 0, Jake Hagler 5-6 0-1 11, Jesse Behm 0-2 0-0 0, Dan Janu 1-1 0-1 2, Eric Knodel 3-3 0-0 8, Beny Collins 3-4 0-1 6. Totals: 31-62 14-21 83.

DICKINSON STATE (3-6): Ty Ackleson 7-10 10-11 25, Robbie Morey 3-6 0-0 8, DeSean Atkins 3-7 0-0 6, Tevin Russell 6-10 3-5 17, mackenson Odenier 2-5 4-7 8, Jeremy Beehler 1-4 0-0 2, Juston Goodwin 6-7 1-2 13, Brock Boos 4-6 2-2 14, Isiah Thomas 2-3 0-0 4. Totals: 34-58 20-27 97.

Halftime: 43-43. Total fouls: J 26, Home 20. 3-point goals: J 7-19 (Wingo 0-1, Brequan 1-5, Breshion 0-1, Hoge 0-2, Newton 3-5, Brown 0-1, Hagler 1-2, Knodel 2-2), DSU 9-17 (Acklesonn 1-3 Morey 2-4, Russell 2-2, Beehler 0-2, Boos 4-6). Rebounds: J 33 (Collins 5), DSU 34 (Ackleson 7). Assists: J 8 (Hoge, Newton 2), DSU 17 (Ackleson 4). Steals: J 10 (Hoge 2), DSU 16 (Morey 3). Blocks: J 2 (Wingo, Janu 1), DSU 5 (Odenier 5). Turnovers: J 17 (Hoge 4), DSU 16 (Russell 7).

Meaghan MacDonald

Meaghan is the sports page designer and copy editor for the Forum of Fargo-Moorhead.  After graduating from James Madison University (Va.) in May 2013, she moved from New Jersey to North Dakota to start pursuing her career in sports journalism and was a sports reporter for the Dickinson Press and covered Dickinson State athletics. Meaghan has been working for the Forum since June 2015.