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St. Olaf wins third MIAC game in a row with victory over Concordia

Nick Hoelmer
January 7, 2014

NORTHFIELD, Minn. - Connor Gunderson's 15-point, five-rebound outing led St. Olaf to a 71-61 MIAC men's basketball win over visiting Concordia-Moorhead on Wednesday at Skoglund Center.

Gunderson was 6-of-9 from the field and added two steals and two assists as the Oles won their third straight league game.

Brady Syverson had 13 points and 10 rebounds for Concordia (6-6, 2-5 MIAC) in the loss.

"It's a great win for us because that team [Concordia-Moorhead] can beat anyone," said Gunderson. "It's important for us to stay focused every night and we did that."

The Oles found themselves in a 34-31 hole at the half, but three straight baskets from Gunderson, Mason Braden and Sterling Nielsen to start off the second half gave the Oles a 37-35 lead that they would never lose. The Cobbers kept the game close and only trailed 65-59 with 1:40 remianing, but Nielsen and Riley Aeikens made the team's last six free-throws to close out the game and seal the win for St. Olaf.

St. Olaf (7-3, 4-1 MIAC) forced 10 Cobber turnovers on the night and also out-rebounded Concordia 31-27.

"Our team goals were to pressure the ball and rebound tonight," said Gunderson.

The Ole reserves also proved critical, as they contributed 29 points. Sam Daly lead the charge off the bench, scoring 11 points and grabbing four rebounds, Aikens tallied eight points and Nick Hanson scored four.

Brandon Giese chipped in 14 points and Tom Fraase also made it into double-digits with 10.

Up next for the Oles is a MIAC matchup with the University of St. Thomas tomorrow evening. The game will begin at 7:30 in St. Paul.

"It's going to be a great basketball game," said Gunderson about the matchup with St. Thomas, who is undefeated in the conference. "Even though it's a road game, we hope to have fans come and cheer us on!"

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