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Cougar men fall to Rams in UMAC action

The North Central Rams came out on top in a back-and-forth game as the University of Minnesota, Morris men's basketball team fell 99-92 Saturday at home.

North Central shot 63.6 percent from the field. The Rams were led by Nathan Roeder's 51 points.

The Cougars had four scorers in double figures all with at least 17. Brendon Foss led all Cougars with 19 points and 12 rebounds. Ben Hoidal had 17 points off the bench and Logan Orazem and Steve Birman each had 16 points.

The Cougars also shot the ball well and hit a season-high 13 three pointers on 33 attempts. The Cougars' bench came through as they poured in 30 points.

The first half featured 20 lead changes and six ties. Neither team led by more than three in the opening 10 minutes of play.

Birman hit a three with 9:28 left in the first half to give the Cougars a five-point lead. The lead grew to six, but NCU responded with an 8-0 run to take a 32-30 lead.  Hoidal knocked down a pair of free throws with under a minute to play, giving the Cougars a 43-42 lead at halftime.

Roeder took over as he scored 16 points in the opening five minutes of the second half giving NCU a 64-51 lead with 14:47 left. The lead got as large as 16 as Roeder hit another three with 10:30 left. At one point in the second half Roeder scored 14 of the Rams' 15 points to take an 85-71 lead.

Minnesota Morris responded with a 9-2 run to cut the lead to seven with just under four minutes left. Both teams took turns scoring as there were 24 points scored, 12 by each team, in the final four minutes. The  Cougars came up short falling 99-92.

  The Cougars will be back in action Tuesday night at 7:30 as they host Trinity Bible in the P.E. Center.