Bison Blow by UC Santa Barbara, 82-63

FARGO, N.D. (NDSU Athletics) -- Deng Geu and Tyson Ward both scored 16 points and grabbed six rebounds to lead the North Dakota State men’s basketball team to an 82-63 victory over UC Santa Barbara on Sunday afternoon inside the Scheels Center.

NDSU improved to 1-1 with the win. The Gauchos went 23-9 last season and were picked in the top tier of the Big West Conference again this year.

The Bison shot 49 percent for the game and limited UCSB to 37-percent shooting. NDSU knocked down 10 threes and went 18-for-22 at the free throw line.

NDSU had 10 players log between 14 and 26 minutes in the game. After the 16 points apiece from Ward and Geu, the Bison also received 11 points from Cameron Hunter, 10 from Jordan Horn, and nine from both Tyree Eady and Vinnie Shahid. Ward and Horn each tallied three assists.

UC Santa Barbara held a 12-6 lead eight minutes into the game before Horn hit a three and Hunter converted a three-point play to spark the Bison. NDSU owned a narrow 26-25 advantage with less than four minutes left in the first half when the Bison exploded for a 10-0 run to go up 36-25 right before halftime.

The Gauchos pulled within five at 43-38 early in the second half. NDSU responded with a 15-0 run to make the score 58-38 with 12:30 to play – a run keyed by three-pointers from Jared Samuelson, Shahid and Eady.

NDSU departs for three games at the Islands of the Bahamas Showcase next week, beginning with a contest against Miami (Ohio) on Friday.