MEN'S BASKETBALL: Sioux keep rolling along
UND's switch to a new offense this season didn't come easily to Ervin Youmans. "At first, we all struggled with the offense," Youmans said. "I struggled more than anyone. To get it down, feels good." Youmans made the new Sioux offense look easy S...
UND's switch to a new offense this season didn't come easily to Ervin Youmans.
"At first, we all struggled with the offense," Youmans said. "I struggled more than anyone. To get it down, feels good."
Youmans made the new Sioux offense look easy Saturday night against Jamestown College.
The senior guard scored 21 points and added six assists as UND rolled to an 85-71 win against the Jimmies before 1,619 fans in the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center. The win was UND's seventh straight and improved the Sioux to 7-3.
The Sioux roll is the result of its continually improving offense.
"We're coming together," Sioux senior Emmanuel Little said.
UND put the game away in the first half. An 11-0 run gave the Sioux a 13-5 lead. By halftime, UND's 77 percent shooting carried it to a 48-36 lead.
The high shooting percentage was a result of UND's Princeton-based offense, one that features a degree of patience, give-and-go plays and slashing moves to the hoop.
The new offense mixes well with UND's athleticism.
In addition to Youmans, Little added 16 points, while Jimmy Hoy added 11. The Sioux also received a combined 16 points from their post players, Derek Benter and Tyler Koenig. Each had eight.
The switch in offenses didn't come easy at first for Youmans, but the senior guard has adapted well as he's the leading scoring in the North Central Conference.
"I'm on him every day," UND coach Brian Jones said. "He has some lapses, but he wants to learn."
UND also recorded 25 assists to only 10 turnovers. Point guard Darius Joseph led the way with seven assists.
One of Youmans' six assists came on a highlight-reel basket by Little.
Little slammed home a fastbreak dunk thanks to a behind-the-back pass from Youmans, a play that gave the Sioux a 66-48 lead with 10 minutes to play.
Youmans, the quickest player on the floor, added a fastbreak basket on UND's next possession and the 5-foot-11 senior capped UND's athletic spurt by feeding Benter for a basket with 9 minutes to go.
His assist on Benter's basket helped produce a 70-50 Sioux advantage. The Sioux stretched the lead to 75-50 before cruising in the final eight minutes.
The Sioux shot 63 percent from the field and outrebounded Jamestown 27-22.
UND's performance was head-and-shoulders above its showing against Upper Iowa on Tuesday night. The Sioux, who were in the middle of finals week, won 65-51, but their offense wasn't as sharp as it was against the Jimmies.
"Finals are over and there is a relief about that," Jones said.
Jamestown came into the game averaging 85.6 points. The 7-4 Jimmies were led by Jordan Olson's 18 points. Jake Holen added 13.
The Jimmies' ability to score concerned Jones. Any concern, however, was offset by UND's sharp offense.
"We jumped on them early," Little said. "In the second half, we didn't want to let up. We wanted to make sure we had a double-digit lead."