THIS WEEK: The Dakota State University men's basketball team (17-7 overall record, 3-2 Association of Independent Institutions conference record) looks to extend their winning streak with a pair of games this week. The Trojans play their final home regular-season contest on Wednesday night, hosting Mayville State (N.D.) (6-16, 2-7 A.I.I.) in the 'Blue-Out' night. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m. at DSU Fieldhouse. Seniors will be recognized prior to the game. On Saturday, DSU heads to Fremont, Neb. to take on Midland (Neb.) (15-10) of the Great Plains Athletic Conference. The game is scheduled to start at 4 p.m. at the Events Center.
BLUE OUT NIGHT: Dakota State will be holding a Blue-Out Night on Wednesday night. Fans are encouraged to wear blue clothing/apparel to the game to help raise cancer awareness.
TROJAN SENIORS: The DSU men's basketball team will be recognizing three seniors before the game on Wednesday night. The three seniors are Tyrone Gordon, Jr., Keith Lee II and Luke Lamb. They will be playing their last career collegiate home game at the DSU Fieldhouse.
VINSON NAMED TO A.I.I. MALE ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Junior forward Yusuf Vinson was selected to A.I.I. Male Athlete of the Week announced on Feb. 4. It was his second time this season that he had received this honor. Vinson had a double-double performance for the week averaging 11 points and 10 rebounds per game for the Trojans. He came off the bench to score 10 points and pulled down 12 rebounds in a 63-55 road victory over Mount Marty (S.D>) on Jan. 29. He added 12 points and earned eight rebounds in a 74-62 home win over Jamestown (N.D.) on Feb. 2. He shot 53.3 percent from the field and had three 3-pointers and three steals for the week.
HOME COOKING: Dakota State is seeking for their 10th home win on Wednesday night. The Trojans only lost twice this season, both to nationally-ranked teams at DSU Fieldhouse. DSU had recorded four straight home winning seasons since DSU men's basketball head coach Gary Garner's arrival.
DSU LANDS JVC'S STANDOUT HOFER: Adam Hofer of James Valley Christian High School had signed to join the Trojan men's basketball team this coming fall. Hofer has accumulated 1,576 points during his basketball career at JVC. He is averaging 23.5 points per game this season. Hofer was named to the '281' All-Conference team three times and was earned Class 'B' All-State first team during his junior year.
LAST MEETING: Dakota State and Mayville State had already met twice this season. In both teams' first meeting, the Trojans defeated the Comets in an overtime thriller by the score of 82-81 in Mayville, N.D. on Dec. 15. Both met in the consolation game of the Dakota Tip-off Classic on Jan. 20 in Jamestown, N.D. The Trojans built their largest lead of the game in the second-half and never looked back as DSU recorded a 65-49 victory. Dakota State rallied back from a 20-point deficit to defeat Midland on Jan. 5 at the DSU Fieldhouse. The Warriors led 41-21 with 45 seconds left in the first-half, but the Trojans outscored Midland 52-28 in the final twenty minutes of the game (including 9-1 run in the final 2:16 of the game) to earn a 75-69 thrilling comeback victory.
DSU MAKES APPERANCE TO NATIONAL POLL FOR EIGHTH STRAIGHT WEEK: The Trojans extended their weekly appearance to eight weeks in the NAIA Division II Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 national poll, receiving four votes on Tuesday afternoon. Two other A.I.I. schools are ranked in the top 25â€”Rochester (Mich.) at No. 11 and Valley City State (N.D.) at No. 19. The ninth regular-season edition will be announced on Tuesday, Feb. 12.
LAST TIME OUT: Dakota State went 2-0 last week, defeating in-state rival Mount Marty and Jamestown (N.D.). The Trojans and Lancers were tied at halftime (30-30) on Jan. 29 before DSU outscored MMC 33-25 in the second-half in Yankton, N.D. Dakota State returned home on Feb. 2 against the Jimmies. The Trojans trailed 36-34 at halftime, but outscored JC 40-26 in the second-half. Mayville State dropped a 68-49 home contest to rival Valley City State (N.D.) on Feb. 2 in Mayville, N.D. Midland dropped a pair of road games last week in GPAC conference play. The Warriors lost to Hastings (Neb.) by the score of 87-75 on Jan. 30 and dropped a 81-69 road contest to Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.) on Feb. 2.
INDEPENDENT SPEAKING: The top eight in the independent weekly poll had remained unchanged from the previous weekly rankings. Dakota State remains third in the latest A.I.I. weekly ranking as of Monday, Feb. 4. Rochester (Mich.) holds the No. 1 spot with a 16-3 overall record. Valley City State is at No. 2 with a 19-5 overall record. Ashford (Iowa) stays at No. 4 spot (17-9 record). Northern New Mexico (9-15) and Jamestown (N.D.) (11-15) are tied at the No. 5 spot. Wilberforce (Ohio) is seventh (9-16), followed by Mayville State (N.D.) at No. 8 spot (6-16 record). The A.I.I. Division II Men's Basketball Conference Postseason Tournament will be held in Jamestown, N.D. on Feb. 22-24 with the top six teams advancing.
DSU QUICK LEADERS: Tyrone Gordon, Jr. averages 14.5 points per game for the Trojans. He shoots 50.9 percent from the field. John Lamb is averaging 12.2 points per game and ranks 16th in the nation in 3-point field goals made per game (2.8). He leads the team with 44 steals (1.9 steals per gameâ€”46th in the nation). John Lamb averages 3.1 assists per game (72 total assists). Yusuf Vinson had accumulated a total of 175 rebounds this season (7.6 rebounds per game). He ranks 29th in the nation in offensive rebounds per game (2.8). Keith Lee II is 44th in the nation in assist/turnover ratio of 2.0. Terrell Newton records 15 blocked shots this season (0.7 blocks per game).
WATCH & LISTEN IT: Dakota State will have a free live video and audio of DSU-Mayville State basketball game on Wednesday night. Fans wanting to follow the action can go to the following link: http://streaming.dsu.edu/Athletics-Live. Midland will be carrying a free live video stream on Saturday (http://www.livestream.com/midlandathletics). The link also will be available on www.dsuathletics.com in the 'Live Games' tab above the 'Upcoming Events.'
LIVE STATS/PLAY-BY-PLAY: All Dakota State home basketball games will have live stats and play-by-play. The live stats link is available on game day on www.dsuathletics.com under 'Live Games' tab above the 'Upcoming Events.'
STAY CONNECTED: Stay connected with Dakota State Trojan men's basketball and athletics all season long on www.dsuathletics.com. The Trojans are also on Twitter, just log onto www.twitter.com/GoDaSUAthletics. The Dakota State University Athletics group page can be found on Facebook on https://www.facebook.com/DSUTrojanAthletics.
UP NEXT: Dakota State continues their action on the road next week. The Trojans play their final two regular-season games in North Dakota, visiting Jamestown (N.D.) on Feb. 13 (7:30 p.m.) and Valley City State (N.D.) on Feb. 16 (4 p.m.).
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director