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DSU men’s basketball returns home to begin their four-game home stand
November 7, 2011
THIS WEEK: Dakota State (2-0 overall record, which mark the first time for over 15 years that DSU opened the season with two straight wins) returns back to DSU Fieldhouse to begin their four-game home stand. DSU's three of the next four opponents are from members of the Great Plains Athletic Conference. The Trojans host No. 7 Northwestern (Iowa) (2-0) on Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m. DSU is hosting the annual Ed Harter Classic on Friday and Saturday with Graceland (Iowa) (1-2), Mayville State (4-1) and No. 23 Morningside (1-1).
ED HARTER CLASSIC: The Ed Harter Classic kicks off on Friday night at 5:30 p.m. as Graceland takes on Mayville State. Dakota State hosts Morningside in the night cap at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, Morningside plays Mayville State at 4 p.m., while DSU welcomes Graceland in the final game of the classic at 6 p.m. All games will be held at the DSU Fieldhouse.
LAST TIME OUT: Dakota State opened their 2011-12 schedule with two straight wins last week. The Trojans won their third straight season opener game on Nov. 1 versus Grace (Neb.) 79-53. DSU defeated their former Dakota Athletic Conference foe Mayville State 81-61 on Nov. 5 in Mayville, N.D. Northwestern (Iowa) opened their season with two straight wins on the road against Dakota Athletic Conference members. The Red Raiders defeated Valley City State 77-63 on Nov. 4 and No. 22 Jamestown 69-66 on Nov. 5. Morningside dropped an 89-87 decision at York (Neb.) on Nov. 4 and bounced back to defeat Kansas Wesleyan 99-67 in Sioux City, Iowa on Nov. 5. Graceland, a NAIA Division I school, won their season opener at AIB (Iowa) 109-67. Graceland dropped the next two contests in the Mount Mercy Classic – 83-81 loss to No. 15 Iowa Wesleyan on Nov. 4 and 95-83 loss at Mount Mercy (Iowa) on Nov. 5.
NATIONAL RANKINGS: Two members of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) are ranked in the NAIA Division II Men's Basketball national poll that was released on Oct. 24. Northwestern ranks No. 7 and Morningside sits at No. 23. The first regular-season national poll will be released on Monday, Nov. 28.
LAST MEETING: Northwestern won the last two meetings from DSU that were held at the DSU Fieldhouse. The Red Raiders defeated the Trojans 116-68 on Nov. 7, 2006 and 111-91 on Nov. 12, 2004 as part of the annual Ed Harter Classic. Dakota State had won the last four meetings with Morningside, including three wins last year. The Trojans defeated the Mustangs 75-57 in the University of Sioux Falls Classic on Nov. 5, 2010; 77-70 on Dec. 18, 2010 in Madison, S.D. and 82-78 in overtime in Sioux City, Iowa on Dec. 30, 2010. Dakota State defeated Graceland in their last meeting held in Mitchell, S.D. as part of the Dakota Wesleyan Classic on Oct. 29, 2010. The Trojans won a 92-72 decision over Graceland.
DSU DEFENSE STEPS UP: According to the NAIA-DakStats statistical website as of Monday, Dakota State ranks eighth in the nation in steals per game (12.5) and defense field goal percentage (34.3). The Trojans are 11th in the nation in scoring defense per game (57.0) and 13th in 3-point field goal percentage defense (25.0).
QUICK LEADERS: Donald Stewart leads the Trojans in scoring with 17.5 points per game. He shots 66.7 percent from the field, which is 26th in the nation. Keith Biggers averages eight rebounds per game for DSU. Jesse Bean dishes out eight assists through two games and ranks 44th in the nation in assists per game (4.0). Jordan Snyder records five steals and ranks 38th in the nation in steals per game (2.5).
COACHES' CORNER: Gary Garner is entering his third year as Dakota State University men's basketball head coach. Garner's collegiate experience is primarily on the Division I and II levels. Prior to Dakota State, he has served as the assistant coach for Iowa Energy, a team with the NBA Development League, for two seasons. He served as head basketball coach at Southeast Missouri State University from 1997-2006. From 1991-1997, he led the men's team at Fort Hays State University. His 1995-1996 team won the NCAA Division II Tournament, capping a perfect 34-0 season. The same year, Garner was named the NCAA II Bulletin National Coach of the Year and the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) Coach of the Year. In June 2011, Garner was inducted in the RMAC Hall of Fame for his successful coaching ear at Fort Hays State University.
COACH MATTHEW GARNER: Matthew Garner is in his third season with the Dakota State University men's basketball coaching staff. He comes to DSU with a wide background of coaching experience. He was a member of the 1995-96 undefeated Fort Hays State University NCAA Division II National Championship team that finished an overall record of 34-0. In addition to his tenure at FHSU, he was an integral part of four conference championship as a player and a volunteer student assistant coach. After his tenure at Fort Hays State, he joined the coaching staff at NCAA Division I Southeast Missouri State University. He also had coaching experience at University of Denver.
STAY CONNECTED: Stay connected with Dakota State women's basketball and athletics all season long at www.dsuathletics.com. The Trojans are also on Twitter, just log onto www.twitter.com/DaSUAthletics.
LIVE STATS: Live stats and play-by-play will be available in all Dakota State's home games. The live stats are available on game day on www.dsuathletics.com under 'Live Games' tab above the 'Upcoming Events.'
WATCH IT: All Dakota State home men's basketball games will be webcast live and free of charge. Fans wanting to follow the action can go to the following link: www.streaming.dsu.edu/Athletics-Live.
UP NEXT: Dakota State concludes their four-game home stand on Nov. 15 as they host their in-state rival Dakota Wesleyan at DSU Fieldhouse. Tip-off is slated for 8 p.m. or approximately 25 minutes after the completion of the women's basketball game. The Trojans travel to Aberdeen, S.D. on Nov. 19 for an exhibition game with NCAA Division II Northern State at 7 p.m., then heads to Ellendale, N.D. for a game with Trinity Bible College on Nov. 20 at 6 p.m.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director