North Dakota State Cruises Past DU, 90-70

Thursday night DU men’s basketball added to their dreadful three game conference losing streak, all by double digits. The game featured a DU team, once 8-1 and brimming with confidence, fall behind early and fade in the second half. NDSU never trailed in the game and led by as many as 27 points. The win extended the Bison winning streak to four games and Denver fell to 1-5 in conference play.

Sports are oftentimes as much about confidence as skill. Denver trailed by six points before half at Hamilton Gym when NDSU’s Boden Skunberg drained a three point heave at the buzzer. That basket sapped the energy and confidence from Hamilton Gym.

The Bison opened up the second half with seven straight points and it was game over.

The Bison went 10-27 while DU went 5 of 10 from three. The Pioneers are giving up shots from distance – especially timely baskets from distance which stop momentum and drain confidence. But overall it will be improved overall defense, perimeter and low block, which will lift DU out of this funk. And, of course, a solid dose of confidence would help as well.

Touko Tainamo, Tevin Smith and Tommy Bruner all finished with 13, 11 & 12 points respectively. Smith appears to be rounding back into form after a leg injury.

Denver has a chance to get back on track against last place North Dakota Saturday afternoon at Hamilton Gym.

2 thoughts on “North Dakota State Cruises Past DU, 90-70”

  1. This is a bad slump DU is in. Until this team learns to play defense, it’s going to be very a long winter for Denver – you just can’t lose by 20 on your home floor in league play. That’s the fastest ticket to losing your players in the portal and having your home crowds dip below 500, and irrelevance…

    Of course, having more effective three point shooters and better foul shooting would help DU to stay competitive, but it starts with making stops on defense and know one knows this better than Jeff Wulbrun and his staff. This team’s body language sucks right now. They need a league win badly, and North Dakota this weekend is a team DU can and should beat at home.

    Let’s see what these DU guys are made of….

  2. Another game, another dispiriting loss. That was hard to watch. This team has clearly lost its way, and it’s sad to see.

    As most of us would agree, one of the core issues is team defense. Pios are giving their opponents too many open looks and too many easy baskets, and they just can’t seem to get a stop when they really need one during the course of the game. The compete level just isn’t there. I’m sorry, but NDSU had no business scoring 90 points last night.

    Wulbrun and the other coaches clearly have their work cut out for them, but this team also needs someone on the floor to step up and be a leader. I don’t see anyone out there right now who appears to want to lead this team. When things are going south, you need guys to assert themselves and set an example, and that just isn’t happening right now. Let’s hope that changes this weekend.

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