DICKINSON, N.D. – The Blue Hawks hosted the University of Regina on Friday (Oct. 17) in their season opener and Head Coach Justin Wetzel's Dickinson State debut. The Blue Hawks came up short, 69-63. The Blue Hawks are now 0-1 on the season, while the Cougars improve to 1-2 in exhibition play.
Dickinson State and Regina battled to a tight first half. The teams headed into the locker room with a 34-32 advantage for Regina.
Right off the inbound to start the second, Jacob Gondrezick knocked down a three-point shot to give the Blue Hawks a 35-34 lead. Dickinson State would pull ahead by 12 with 11 minutes to play. The Cougars then began their comeback. Jonathan Tull, Brandon Tull, and Alex Igual went a combined 11-for-16 at the free throw line to help cut the Blue Hawks' lead and even the score at 56-56. With just 2:06 to play, Dickinson State pulled ahead 60-58 on a field goal by Curtis Redd. Igual knocked down a three for Regina to pull ahead by one. The time drained down to 40 seconds at 63-63. Travis Sylvestre knocked down a field goal to go ahead 65-63. Igual and J. Tull would each convert two free throws to put the score at 69-63.
B. Tull led the Cougars with 15 points. Igaul finished with 14, while Sylvestre recorded 13, and J. Tull finished with 11. J. Tull also recorded a team high nine rebounds, all of which were defensive. The Cougars finished with a 38.3 shooting percentage, eight offensive rebounds, 32 defensive rebounds, and 20 fouls.
Russell picked up his first double-double of the season with 14 points and 13 total rebounds. Mackenson Odenier also recorded a double-double. He recorded 13 points and 10 rebounds. Redd finished with 12 points and seven rebounds. Billy Engel came off the bench for Dickinson State and picked up a team high six assists. Dickinson State shot 33.3% from the field, pulled in 53 rebounds, seven steals, and 19 assists.
The Blue Hawks will be back in action on Saturday (Oct. 25) against Rocky Mountain College in Dillon, Mont. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m.
See Coach Wetzel's post-game reaction, here.