Bison Blast Western Illinois, 85-69

FARGO, N.D. (NDSU Athletics) – Six Bison scored in double figures as the North Dakota State men’s basketball team defeated Western Illinois 85-69 on Thursday evening at the Scheels Center. Junior Tyson Ward led NDSU with 17 points and a career-high 13 rebounds.

Ward’s double-double was his first of the season and the seventh of his career.

NDSU used a balanced attack to dispatch the Leathernecks, with six Bison scoring between 11 and 17 points. Behind Ward, NDSU got 14 points from Deng Geu, 13 from Rocky Kreuser, 13 from Vinnie Shahid, 12 from Sam Griesel, and 11 from Jared Samuelson.

Griesel’s 12 points were a season-high. Geu grabbed six rebounds, and Shahid added five rebounds and four assists.

NDSU shot 52 percent for the game and limited WIU to 38-percent shooting. The Bison made 11-of-23 (48 percent) from three-point range.

Kreuser scored the first eight points of the game for NDSU, as the Bison raced out to an 11-3 lead just over three minutes in. NDSU pushed the margin to 14 at 40-26 late in the first half.

Western Illinois never got closer than 11 points in the second half, and the Bison led by as many as 24.

NDSU plays next at Denver on Wednesday, Jan. 16.