SMSU WINS NSIC/SANFORD HEALTH MEN'S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT - Mar 4, 2017
Southwest Minnesota State used 20 points from both Joey Bartlett (6'6''-F-93) and Ryan Bruggeman (6'0''-PG-96) to earn a 71-58 victory over Upper Iowa in the NSIC/Sanford Health Tournament championship game on Tuesday night at the Sanford Pentagon SMSU, 26-5 overall, earns the NSIC's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament held March 11-12, 14 at a site to be determined. The 64-team field will be announced this Sunday at 9:30 a.m. CST on NCAA.com. UIU, which drops to 22-10 on the season, defeated SMSU twice during the regular season. UIU will now await word for a possible NCAA at-large bid. Bruggeman, named the tournament MVP, scored 20 points on 7 of 12 shooting with seven assists and one steal in 36 minutes in tonight's win. Bruggeman finished the four-game NSIC Tournament averaging 21 points, six assists and 3.8 rebounds, while shooting 60 percent (28 of 47) from the field and 90 percent (26 of 29) from the free throw line. The NSIC Tournament title is the program's second all-time (2012), while now appearing in six championship games. Bartlett, also named to the all-tournament team, scored 20 points with three 3-pointers and five rebounds. Michael Lee (6'6''-F-96) chipped in with nine points on three 3-pointers, while KJ Davis (6'3''-PG) added eight points. Turner Moen (6'4''-G-95) grabbed a team-high seven rebounds. SMSU closed the night shooting 44 percent (25 of 57) from the field, including a solid 44 percent (7 of 16) from 3-point range. SMSU limited UIU to just 34 percent (17 of 50) shooting, including 3 of 15 from 3-point range and also forced UIU in 15 turnovers. SMSU held a 23-6 scoring advantage in points off of turnovers. Both teams struggled shooting in the opening 10 minutes, with SMSU making just 6 of 17, while UIU started the game just 3 of 14. The Mustangs started heating up just after the midway point of the half as Joey Bartlett (6'6''-F-93) hit a pair of 3-pointers to give SMSU a 21-15 lead with 7:51 left in the half. Bartlett's second 3-pointer of the game started a run of 11 straight points scored by Bartlett to push the Mustang lead to 28-19. The Peacocks had a big answer, using an 11-0 run to take their first lead of the game at 30-28 with 2:29 remaining. SMSU came right back and closed the half on a 12-2 run to build a 40-32 halftime lead. Bruggeman started the rally with a pair of free throws and finished scoring eight points during the run. SMSU shot 43 percent (13 of 30) in the half and held a 20-18 rebound advantage. Bartlett scored 15 points in the half, while Bruggeman poured in 12 points. UIU was limited to 33 percent (10 of 30) shooting in the opening half. UIU opened the second half with a layup, but Bruggeman countered with a pair of baskets to give SMSU its largest lead at 44-34. UIU would not go away and rallied with a 14-7 midway through the half to cut the deficit to 53-50 with 8:33 on the clock. Turner Moen then hit a big jumper to spark a 9-2 run for SMSU, extending the lead to 62-52 with 5:00 remaining. SMSU had its lead trimmed to 62-53 with 4:40 left, but Lee answered with huge 3-pointer from the left corner to push the lead to 65-53 with just under four minutes left in the contest. The Peacocks would cut the lead to nine points twice in the next couple of minutes, but free throws by Mitch Weg (6'7''-F-95) and a layup following a steal by KJ Davis (6'3''-PG) sealed the victory for SMSU. Jordan Hay (6'6''-F-93) led UIU with 16 points and 15 rebounds. NSIC Tournament Final: SMSU - Upper Iowa 71-58 NSIC Tournament Semifinals: Upper Iowa - Minnesota State 63-55 SMSU - Augustana 97-89, 2OT
Courtesy of NorthernSun
All-NSIC Awards 2017 - Mar 4, 2017
All-NSIC 1st Team 2017
All-Tournament MVP: Ryan Bruggeman (6'0''-PG-96) of SW Minnesota St. Player of the Year: Aaron Lien (6'4''-G-95) of MSU Moorhead Defensive Player of the Year: Jordan Hay (6'6''-F-93) of Upper Iowa Freshman of the Year: Harrison Cleary (6'1''-G) of Minn.-Crookston Newcomer of the Year: Logan Doyle (6'8''-F) of Northern St. Coach of the Year: Brad Bigler of SW Minnesota St.
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