Jimmies men's hoops fall short in 87-82 loss to Northwestern

Feb. 7—JAMESTOWN — The University of Jamestown men's basketball team saw a potentially game-tying three come up short in an 87-82 loss to No.13-ranked Northwestern College on Wednesday, Feb. 7, at Harold Newman Arena.

The Jimmies (12-11, 7-8) had the ball in the hands of Silas Bennion in the dying seconds of the game down 85-82, but the three from Bennion hit off the iron and stayed out.

In order to even get to a position to send the game to overtime though, the Jimmies had to mount a big comeback. The Jimmies were down by as many as 14 points in the second half on two separate occasions with the final one coming at the 9:53 mark of the second half when they were down 74-60. Over the last 10 minutes of the game, the Jimmies outscored the Red Raiders 22-13. During that stretch, the Jimmies got as close as three points with eight seconds left.

"We started getting active, started playing carefree and reckless and running around and trying to make plays here and there," Jimmies head coach Greg Ulland said. "So, it's something that obviously we can't do for 40 minutes so, it's one of those things where when your back is against the wall, what are you gonna do. It's that old cliche is you're gonna fight your way out of it. So, I thought our kids started clawing their way back in, making a play here, making a play there, continuing attacking the rim, making a play defensively, work yourself back into a position where you get a shot to tie the game. There's not much else you can ask for."

The beginning of the game was all Jimmies as they got out to a quick 12-6 lead and had Newman Arena energized with 14:47 to go in the first half. However, the Red Raiders (18-5, 11-4) battled back to take a 20-18 lead with 9:54 to go in the opening half. The Red Raiders appeared to be pulling away from there taking a 48-40 lead with 1:37 to go in the first half but the Jimmies had other ideas cutting it to 48-46 at the half. The Jimmies kept that up early in the second half as they took a 50-49 lead on a Bennion jumper, part of a 30-point performance from the junior. The teams traded the lead back and forth over the next few possessions before the Red Raiders went on their big run.

"They ran some good actions," Ulland said. "(Alex) Van Kalsbeek got some good looks and like I said they ran some good actions for him, got him the touches where they needed to. So there were some good calls and they put us in some vulnerable positions. So we just gotta be able to fight through some screens a little bit harder, get our help side one more step closer, just little things like that, it all compounds itself."

The Jimmies return to the court at 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 10, when they take on Midland.

NWC 87, UJ 82

NWC: 48 39 — 87

UJ: 46 36 — 82

Points leaders:

NWC: Alex Van Kalsbeek 27, Zach LaFave 12, Keyton Moser 12, Craig Sterk 10

UJ: Silas Bennion 30, Colby Vazquez 14, Will Cordes 11

Assists leaders:

NWC: Hunter Berry 6, Kaleb Booth 3, Van Kalsbeek 2, Sterk 2, LaFave 1

UJ: Cordes 6, Bennion 2, Christian Lietz 1, Jimmy Llinas 1, Vazquez 1

Leading rebounders:

NWC: Van Kalsbeek 7, Sterk 7, Berry 5, LaFave 5, Moser 5, Dillon Carlson 4, Conner Geddes 4, Booth 3

UJ: Llinas 11, Chandler 6, Lietz 4