(DCC Athletics release)
GLENDIVE – The six-game winning streak for Dawson Community College’s basketball men was snapped Sunday on the road by Lake Region State College 93-82.
The Bucs hadn’t lost since December 1.
Sunday afternoon in Devils Lake the Bucs dug an early deficit. CJ Nelson’s tried his best to bring the Bucs back, but he didn’t get much help in the comeback bid. Both teams struggled to score early on, but the Royals finally broke out of it to build an 11-2 lead behind Lamar Wood’s inside play in the first five minutes. Dawson’s shots just weren’t falling, though they fought hard to stay within striking distance. At one point Lake Region went on a 13-0 run and took their largest lead at 33-17. Late in the first half, the Bucs started forcing some turnovers and Nelson connected on a couple from long range as well as all six of his free throw attempts. They put together their own 16-3 run and got within two points with a minute remaining until intermission. Neither team could score in the final minute and the first half concluded with Lake Region clinging to a 40-38 lead. The home team out-shot the visitors 50% to 32% from the field, but offensive rebounds and forced turnovers gave Dawson 13 more shots than Lake Region. Nelson finished the half with 14 points while Jordan Lynn had 11 and Lamar Wood had 16 for the Royals.
The Bucs came out of intermission and got a stop on the first defensive possession and then Camron Dunfee nailed a 3-pointer to give the Bucs their second lead of the game 41-40. Lake Region came fighting back and built their lead back up to 53-46 before Nelson again led the Buccaneer’s comeback bid. He had two straight from long range that pulled them again within two points at 60-58. Unfortunately for the Bucs, they couldn’t score on the next five possessions and dug themselves another hole. In the closing five minutes, Nelson hit shots three times to pull them within 5 or 6 points, but they never got any closer. Lake Region iced the game down the stretch with free throws to escape with the 11 point victory.
Nelson carried the Buccaneers with a game high 38 total points on 11 of 18 shooting including a 7-13 night from behind the 3 point line. Marcus Stephens scored 15 points and grabbed 6 rebounds while Man Man Baker contributed 11 points and dished out 4 assists. Devin Collins was active around the glass pulling down 9 rebounds.
Lake Region was led by Lamar Wood with 26 points on an efficient 10-13 shooting night, along with 9 rebounds. The Royals had a couple of guys with double doubles as Jordan Lynn scored 20 points and pulled down 11 boards and Zac Olson had 16 points and hauled in a game high 18 rebounds. TJ Mickelson also had a good game for LRSC scoring 17 points and dishing out 4 assists.
Lake Region shot 51 percent from the field, 44 percent from the 3-point line and 72 percent from the free throw line while also winning the battle of the boards 54-38. Dawson shot 83% from the charity stripe and forced 21 turnovers, but that wasn’t enough to overcome their cold shooting from the field.
“We weren’t able to match their physicality and toughness tonight,” said Dawson head coach Joe Peterson. “They played with more desire. CJ Nelson had a spectacular game but one person can’t do it alone. It takes a total team effort to win a tough conference game on the road. Every team in this league is going to have a couple of setbacks during conference play. I hope we can learn from this and get back to our winning ways on Thursday night.”
The loss drops Dawson Community College to 10-8 on the season and 1-1 in conference. Lake Region State College moves to 14-5 and 2-0.
The Bucs return home on Thursday night to face four-time defending champion North Dakota State College of Science.
The Lady Buccaneers’ run also came to an end on Sunday at Lady Royals of Lake Region State College, 94-99.
Dawson Community College had many chances throughout the afternoon, but having 34 turnovers and committing 28 team fouls would add up in the end. Lake Region also had a very high amount of turnovers totaling 31. Both teams had 16 steals apiece, scored over 30 points off turnovers and shot well from the field. Lake Region shot 46% in field goals while Dawson shot 56%. Lake Region shot 38% from 3-point land and Dawson shot 50%. Five freshmen Lady Royals scored in double figures with two of them coming off the bench. DCC was outrebounded 39-30. What seemed to be a very one-sided advantage, Lake Region shot 35-43 from the foul line while Dawson went 13-19.
Dawson’s leading scorer Alexius Foster fouled out with a game high 24 points. Ejanae Coopwood scored 20 points to go along with 10 assists, 3 rebounds, 7 steals, but committed 6 turnovers. Sarah Miranda also scored 20 points with 4 assists and 5 steals. Tasia Moore added 13 points off the bench, with 5 turnovers and 5 assists. Naomi Casteleijn had 6 rebounds and Kitawna Little Light collected 5 of her own.
“There were two solid teams going at it this afternoon,” head coach Romeo Lagmay, Jr. “The win could have went either way. I wasn’t pleased with the disproportionate amount of free throws attempted. When there’s a good game like this one, I feel that players should duke it out, and not be dictated in another fashion, but we still committed 34 turnovers and that was dictated by us solely. We tried our best, which I can deal with, but mental toughness and focus will have to improve on our end to finish games like we had today. This was another game that was stolen from us again I truly believe. Hopefully we’ll be ready. This is conference play, and we only have so much time left.”