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The good news was that UND shot the basketball better, shooting 43 percent overall and 37 percent on 3-point attempts. That's still not great, but it was considerably better than the Fighting Hawks' showing two nights earlier against Idaho and for much of the season as well. However, there was bad news, too. UND committed 21 turnovers—a handful at crunch time—and that was the difference in Eastern Washington's 77-64 win over the Hawks on Sunday in a Big Sky Conference game before 1,548 fans at The Betty.
Exactly one year ago, UND opened its Big Sky Conference men's basketball season at Portland State. The Fighting Hawks were pummeled in that Dec. 29 game, 99-62. On Friday, the Hawks opened their 2017-18 Big Sky season and were roughed up by Idaho 74-57 before 1,597 fans at The Betty. Last year, UND learned from that opening-game blowout. The Hawks regrouped and went on to win the Big Sky title. So, the teaching moment after Idaho—the league preseason favorite—rolled past the Hawks was this: It's a long season and there is no reason to hit the panic button.
In the past two seasons, Dale Jones played a total of 11 games at Iowa. Injuries derailed what he hoped would have been a successful collegiate basketball career. “It might not have been the outcome I necessarily wanted,” said Jones. The NCAA, however, granted Jones a sixth year of eligibility since he lost two full seasons at Iowa. Jones transferred to UND in the offseason and now is making the most of his final season.
In the past two seasons, Dale Jones played a total of 11 games at Iowa. Injuries derailed what he hoped would have been a successful collegiate basketball career. "It might not have been the outcome I necessarily wanted," said Jones. The NCAA, however, granted Jones a sixth year of eligibility since he lost two full seasons at Iowa. Jones transferred to UND in the offseason and now is making the most of his final season. The 6-foot-8 forward from Waterloo, Iowa, has played 11 games so far at UND—matching the total of his past two seasons at Iowa.
UND's nonconference schedule was difficult, as the Fighting Hawks played No. 6 Baylor, No. 17 Oregon State and mid-major power South Dakota State. By design, UND has played demanding nonconference schedules in the past as a way to prepare for Big Sky Conference play. And it's time again for the Big Sky season as UND—one of the more successful league teams in the past three seasons—opens conference play Thursday at Idaho.
Boys basketball 6 Monday's results Fosston 71, Climax-Fisher 36 Lake of the Woods vs. Goodridge-Grygla, postponed Barnesville 57, Rothsay 23 Cass Lake-Bena 102, Blackduck 35 Oak Grove 81, Sargent Central 30 Richland 67, Lisbon 33 Wyndmere-Lidgerwood 68, Oakes 55 Milnor-North Sargent 73, Northern Cass 48 Hankinson 70, Enderlin 58 EGF Senior High 86, Dilworth-G-F 69 DGF 32 37 --69 EGF 52 34 --86
UND bolted out to a 19-0 lead against Division II Southwest Minnesota State. Everything seemed to be place; the Hawks were sharp in all phases of the game. Ten minutes later, the game was tied at 26-26. "We had a short talk and it worked out pretty well," said UND coach Travis Brewster. UND regained control and cruised to an 85-62 win over Southwest Minnesota State on Tuesday night at The Betty. UND improved to 7-3 and won its 11th-straight game at home. "Our first group established themselves very well," said Brewster.
SPOKANE, Wash.—Earlier this season, UND lost by 22 points at Nebraska. Two weeks later, Creighton rolled past the Fighting Hawks by 43 points. So, when UND took to the floor Saturday night against No. 12 Gonzaga, how could UND expect a better result since the Zags handled Creighton with relative ease earlier this season? UND players, however, expected to do well against the Zags. And UND almost pulled the upset of the season in college basketball before falling 89-83 in overtime against the Zags before 6,000 fans at The Kennel.
SPOKANE, Wash.—UND entered The Kennel as a 30-point underdog against No. 12 Gonzaga. The Fighting Hawks also came in on a three-game losing streak and their overall play—for a good portion of the nonconference season— hadn't been great.
SPOKANE, Wash.—The McCarthey Athletic Center—or The Kennel as the locals call it—may be the perfect venue for college basketball. The Kennel seats 6,000, small enough for every fan to make an impact and large enough to have that feeling of big-time college basketball.