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Cougar rally falls short 65-61

On Wednesday night, the University of Minnesota, Morris men's basketball team continued a home stand hosting the Jamestown College Jimmies. The Cougars were looking to build on their two-game winning streak, but fell short 65-61.

In the first half, the Jimmies' made nine of their first 13 shots compared to the Cougars who went six for 15.

The Cougars pressured the Jimmies into 13 turnovers, but trailed by 15 at the half, 37-22

The Jimmies built their lead on rebounds having a 17-7 advantage in the first half. They also converted 14 of 17 shots in the paint.

The Cougars opened the second half with an 11-3 run, but the Jimmies shut down that momentum quickly with back-to-back three pointers, restoring their 13 point-advantage.

UMM switched to a trapping press midway through the second half. Led by some Cougar reserves, they forced Jamestown into repeated turnovers that UMM converted into points. By the eight-minute mark, the deficit was less than 10.

After two steals by guard Kendall Proell turned into consecutive layups, the Cougars suddenly were trailing by only six with 4:32 remaining.

Two Eric Dalbey free throws one minute later cut that lead to four. Dan Fragodt stole the ensuing inbounds pass and created a layup, making it a two-point game.

After a Jamestown score, with 1:06 left, forward Phil Allen drew a double team in the post and flipped the ball over his head to an open Derek Schmidt on the opposite block for an easy basket.

Thirty-six seconds and one defensive stop later, the Cougars called a timeout with a chance to tie the game. Another pass from Allen to Schmidt led to a shooting foul and Schmidt going to the line with a chance to tie the game up with 14.1 seconds remaining.

But Schmidt missed both free throws and forced the Cougars to foul. The Jimmies converted both to preserve their lead and ensure the win.

In the second half, the stats showed improved Cougar play. For the game they committed only 12 turnovers to the Jimmies' 25. But the Jimmies' advantage in size resulted in a lopsided rebounding advantage, 32-20.

The Cougars were led by Dalbey who scored 15 points and pulled down six boards. Schmidt also contributed eight points on the night.

The Cougars will finish up their pre-Christmas break home stand this Friday when they take on Black Hills State at 7:30 p.m. at the P.E. Center