(Editor's note: Montana State University media release)
PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland State opened the second half on a 13-2 run and wouldn't relinquish the lead again en route to a 87-77 victory over Montana State in Big Sky men's basketball on Thursday, Feb. 20, inside of Viking Pavilion.
The Bobcats and Vikings played a back-and-forth first half as MSU gained a 39-36 advantage through 20 minutes.
Portland State made its push right at the start of the second half. Four different Vikings combined for 13 points in the opening two minutes to stake a 49-41 edge over the 'Cats. The Bobcats cut the deficit to five on two occasions and nearly tied things up. An Amin Adamu layup with 10 minutes, 12 seconds remaining cut the Viks lead to 61-59.
But Holland Woods answered for Portland State. He hit a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession, then made a layup following a Bobcat turnover and the Viks' lead remained by at least two possessions the rest of the way.
Portland State scored 21 points off 17 Bobcat turnovers. The Viks took control in the second half by shooting 60.7% and shot 51.8% in the contest.
The Viks were led by Woods who scored a game-high 22 points. Sal Nuhu joined him in double digits with 12 points while he also snagged 11 rebounds.
Adamu was MSU's scoring leader with 17 points. He was joined in double digits by Borja Fernandez (15), Jubrile Belo (12), Mychael Paulo (11) and Ladan Ricketts (10). The Bobcats shot 47.5% from the field.
Adamu also had team highs in rebounds (8) and assists (5). Harald Frey came out of the game two minutes into the second half due to an apparent ankle injury.
"Regardless of Harald's circumstances, they came out and got after us the first four minutes of the second half," Montana State head coach Danny Sprinkle said. "We knew it was going to happen. We challenged our guys at halftime that we needed to set the rules the first four minutes of the second half. They came out and made the plays. We had some careless turnovers and that was the game right there."
The Bobcats return home to host Montana at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22, inside Worthington Arena.