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NCAA First Four Game Notes: North Dakota State making 3rd Tournament appearance against North Carolina Central

GAME NOTES WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF NORTH DAKOTA STATE SPORTS INFORMATION

 

 

The Game: The No. 16-seeded North Dakota State men’s basketball team (18-15, 9-7 Summit League) will play No. 16 seed North Carolina Central (18-15, 10-6 MEAC) in the First Four of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at University of Dayton Arena in Dayton, Ohio, on Wednesday, March 20. Game time is 6:40 p.m. ET / 5:40 p.m. CT.

What’s at Stake: NDSU is looking for its second Division I NCAA Tournament victory in its fourth tournament appearance.  The winner of the North Dakota State-NC Central contest will play No. 1 overall seed Duke in Columbia, S.C., on Friday, March 22, at 7:10 p.m. ET / 6:10 p.m. CT.

Been Here Before: NDSU is making its third NCAA Tournament appearance in six years, and its fourth Division I NCAA Tournament appearance in school history.

One Previous Meeting: NDSU and NCCU have played once previously — a 104-51 Bison victory in Fargo on Nov. 17, 2007, when both schools were transitioning to Division I.

Under Richman: NDSU is 9-3 at the Summit League Tournament in the Dave Richman era.

Title Talk: NDSU has won four Summit League Tournament crowns in 11 seasons as a full member of the league — 2009, 2014, 2015 and 2019.

Free Throw Shooting: The Bison rank ninth in the nation in free throw shooting at 77.4%.

Challenging Slate: NDSU played eight non-conference opponents this season who finished in the top three of their league standings, including four regular season champions (New Mexico State, Gonzaga, Drake & Montana).

Lighter Load: The Bison did not have a single player rank among the top 20 in The Summit League in minutes played during the conference season. Vinnie Shahid’s 30.0 minutes per game were the 23rd-most in the league.

Limited Turnovers & Fouls: NDSU ranks 15th in the nation for fewest fouls committed per game (14.9) and 20th nationally for fewest turnovers committed per game (10.6).

10 in Double Figures: Ten different Bison players have scored in double figures this season.

NCAA Tournament History

Date                       Round    Seed    Opponent                    Location                   Result
March 20, 2009      64            14        (3) Kansas                    Minneapolis, MN       L, 74-84
March 20, 2014      64            12        (5) Oklahoma               Spokane, WA            W, 80-75 (OT)
March 22, 2014      32            12        (4) San Diego State     Spokane, WA            L, 44-63
March 20, 2015      64            15        (2) Gonzaga                 Seattle, WA               L, 76-86

Team Season Records

The Bison set a school record for three-pointers made in a season this year. NDSU has made 315 threes through 33 games, surpassing the previous record of 294 set in 2017-18.

NDSU is on pace to set a school record for free throw percentage in a season. The Bison are shooting 77.4 percent from the line – nearly a full percentage point better than the previous record set in 1984-85.

Individual Season Records

Jared Samuelson is shooting 46.4 percent from three-point range this season, which would rank him sixth on NDSU’s all-time season list. Samuelson is shooting 90 percent at the free throw line, which would rank him seventh on NDSU’s all-time list.

With one start in the NCAA Tournament, Vinnie Shahid and Rocky Kreuser will become the fourth and fifth Bison to ever start 34 games in a season, joining Lawrence Alexander, TrayVonn Wright and Marshall Bjorklund in 2012-13.

Individual Career Lists

Jared Samuelson ranks fourth on the NDSU career list for three-point shooting, making 43.6 percent for his career. Cameron Hunter is seventh on the list at 42.1 percent.

Summit League Tournament Notes

Vinnie Shahid was named the 2019 Summit League Tournament MVP after averaging 14.7 points in NDSU’s three victories. He shot 56 percent overall and 5-of-9 (56 percent) from beyond the arc. Shahid scored 22 points in the championship game victory over Omaha, with 20 of those points coming in the final 15 minutes.

As a team, NDSU made 34-of-70 from three-point range (49 percent) in the tournament.

The Bison committed just 19 total turnovers in three Summit League Tournament games – an average of 6.3 per contest.

Cameron Hunter made 9-of-12 attempts from three-point range in the Summit League Tournament. He scored 31 point on 12 shots in the tournament.

Individual Trends
  • Tyson Ward is averaging 16.4 points over the past five games.
  • Point guard Vinnie Shahid has committed just 12 turnovers in the past 12 games.

From All Angles: All 12 Bison who have played this season have made multiple three-pointers, and 10 players have made at least 10 treys.

Good Run: The Bison are averaging 21 wins per season over the past six years.

Taking on the Best: NDSU’s game at No. 1-ranked Gonzaga on Nov. 26 was the second time in its Division I history that the Bison took on the No. 1 team in the country. NDSU also played at No. 1 Indiana on Nov. 12, 2012.

High-Level Shooter: Jared Samuelson shot 49 percent from three-point range in Summit League play. He ranks 16th among all active Division I players with a career 43.6 percent from beyond the arc.

On the Boards: Tyson Ward and Purdue Fort Wayne’s John Konchar were the only players in the Summit League under 6-foot-8 who averaged at least 7 rebounds per game in league play.

Eady Stepping Up: Redshirt freshman Tyree Eady shot 52.5 percent in league play, including 45 percent from three-point range. He ranked seventh among Summit League freshmen with 6.8 points per game in league play.

Winning Streak: NDSU’s five-game winning streak in late January and early February was its first since the 2014-15 season. NDSU won five straight in Summit League play that year between Jan. 29 and Feb. 12.

90 Wins: The 81-71 victory over Denver on Feb. 9 was the 90th career win for NDSU head coach David Richman. He is on pace to be the second-fastest to 100 victories in school history.
1. Erv Inniger, 1978-92                       90-51       141 games
2. David Richman, 2014-present        90-63       153 games
3. Bob Lowe, 1933-46                        90-68       158 games
T4. Saul Phillips, 2007-14                  90-69       159 games
T4. Tim Miles, 2001-07                      90-69       159 games