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Freshman Lexi Klabo knows the expectations associated with UND women's basketball. She's watched the program for a number of seasons. Her step-mother is former UND standout Mary Perrizo. Her aunt is Leah Klabo, a former North Dakota State standout. So, she has a basic understanding of how important women's basketball has been in North Dakota.
MOSCOW, Idaho—UND staged a late comeback but fell short, falling to Idaho 65-64 late Saturday night in a Big Sky Conference men's basketball game at the Cowan Spectrum. UND dropped to 7-6 in the Big Sky and 12-12 overall while Idaho improved to 8-5 and 16-10. The Vandals swept the Fighting Hawks in league play this season. UND trailed 63-58 with 38 seconds to go but still had a chance to win it at the buzzer.
UND had won seven in a row before meeting Idaho on Saturday. Against the Vandals, however, UND's luck ran out. Idaho, one of the best 3-point shooting teams in Division I women's basketball, used the long ball to take a 65-59 win over the Fighting Hawks before 1,526 fans at The Betty—a win that kept Idaho hot on the trail of Montana State in the race for the Big Sky Conference regular-season title. The second-place Vandals improved to 10-3 in the league and 18-7 overall.
UND had won seven in a row before meeting Idaho on Saturday. Against the Vandals, however, UND’s luck ran out. Idaho, one of the best 3-point shooting teams in Division...
UND committed 22 turnovers, leading to 26 Eastern Washington points .The Hawks trailed the top team in the Big Sky Conference by seven points with five minutes to play. And UND had three freshmen on the court during crunch time. Yet, UND won. Again.
If truth be told, UND women's basketball coach Travis Brewster would rather win games by 10, 15 or 20 points. But that just isn't the way his players have gone about their business the past few weeks. And he's not complaining. UND is the hottest team in the Big Sky Conference as the Fighting Hawks—following an 0-3 league start—have won six straight and seven of their past eight games.
When Weber State coach Randy Rahe left The Betty last week after his team fell to UND, the longest-tenured coach in the Big Sky Conference talked about life on the road in the massive, three time zone league that stretches from North Dakota to California. "It's so dang hard to win on the road in this league," said Rahe. UND, however, has managed to survive, for the most part, on the road this season. UND is 3-2 in Big Sky road games but will take on the hottest team in the league—Eastern Washington—tonight in Cheney.
After every home game, UND men's basketball coach Brian Jones immediately goes on the air with play-by-play guy Paul Ralston to discuss how the Fighting Hawks performed—win or lose. During that time, UND players head to the Fighting Hawks' locker room and wait for Jones to conclude his postgame radio interview.
UND has had bigger wins in men's basketball over the years. Few, however, perhaps felt as good as UND's highly entertaining 78-71 win over Big Sky Conference power Weber State on Saturday before 2,148 fans at The Betty—a victory that legitimizes the Fighting Hawks as a team that can seriously compete for the league title. Since joining the Big Sky in 2012, UND had yet to beat Weber. The Hawks were 0-8 all time against Weber—the one team UND had not beaten since joining the league.
UND has had bigger wins in men’s basketball over the years. Few, however, perhaps felt as good as UND’s highly entertaining 78-71 win over Big Sky Conference power Weber State...