Moffitt scores thirty points, Falcons beat Montana State

Win streak pushed to twelve, setting up important game Thursday

Sabrina Jiles, Staff Writer

The Falcon Men’s Basketball team rung in another win on Saturday, Jan. 18, putting them on a 12-game winning streak heading straight into the next game. The final score of the game was 83-72, SPU. 

The game started as a back and forth shooting match between the two teams, with Montana State University Billings putting the first points on the board and the Falcons quick to respond. Early on in the game, the Falcons hit 8 of its first 11 shots. However, the Billings team was able to strike back and keep the gap small, thanks to drive-by dunks and open three point shooting. 

Through the first half of the game, there was a constant change in the scoreboard, with each team regaining the lead over the other. This back and forth of scoring occurred throughout the first part of the game as the lead changed hands eight times until the Falcons went on an 8-0 run with just under seven minutes left in the first half. 

This 8-0 run was led by freshman Shaw Anderson, who scored two threes in less than two minutes. This run helped the Falcons to regain the lead, 33-28. It was a lead that the Falcons would never let go of, as they went into halftime with a score of 42-37. 

Starting in the second half, the Falcons came out with a burst of momentum, having an early 9-2 run against the Billings, which increased their lead to 51-39, playing strong defense and attacking the paint on offense. The Yellowjackets closed the gap to three points with eight minutes to go, but the Falcons stood their ground and came away with an 11-point win.

The Falcons were led by sophomore Divant’e Moffitt. With a career high of 30 points, junior Harry Cavell poured in 19 points with 7 rebounds while freshman Shaw Anderson contributed 16 points and 4 rebounds, and junior Mehdi El Mardi grabbed a career high of 14 rebounds.

As for the Yellowjackets, Zharon Richmond had 21 points and eight rebounds, and Brendan Howard had 20 points and seven rebounds. Tyler Green also contributed 19 points. 

Even with the win, Head Coach Grant Leep admitted the team did not get off to its best start.

“It was about the 8 minute mark of the first half where we kind of saw some consecutive stops and that gave us some momentum on offense,” Leep said. 

“We were able to maintain that for the rest of the game and I thought in the second half we were better … it was nice to see that when we are not at our best we can still come out and get a win.”

The Falcons next contest is at home against the Western Washington University Vikings Thursday, Jan. 23 at 7 p.m. The Falcons and the Vikings are the two leading teams in the conference, with SPU being at number one, and the Vikings being number two. 

Leep said the three biggest keys to coming out with the win will be rebounding, ball screen coverages and help defense. 

With only one game separating the two teams from tying for first in the conference, this will definitely be a game in which both teams have something to fight for.