Panthers shoot and shut down Jacks

Marcus Traxler

Marcus TraxlerAssistant Sports Editor

If NDSU stopped the SDSU Jackrabbit men’s basketball team’s outside shooting prowess in their victory last week, UW-Milwaukee flat out stole it and used it for themselves on Saturday night.

The Panthers hit 14 three-pointers, while the Jacks struggled from the outside again, leading to a 82-70 defeat in front of 1,622 fans at Frost Arena on Dec. 11.

In the last week, the Jacks have not shot well against formidable opponents and have seen their shooting percentage, which is among the best in the nation, fall as teams catch on to their shooting abilities.

“People have kinda figured us out. We’re a jump shooting team and they’re really sticking tight to our guards and we don’t have much going on inside,” SDSU head coach Scott Nagy said.

On the contrary, UW-Milwaukee is not known for their long-range shooting.

UWM wasted no time getting on the board via the three-point shot, nailing three of them in the first two-and-a-half minutes. SDSU would draw even at 13 and then take the lead on a pair of Griffan Callahan three-pointers with 10:52 left. The lead would not hold as Lonnie Boga and Tone Boyle followed with threes of their own, putting UWM ahead, 19-16.

SDSU trailed the Panthers closely to open the second half for the first seven minutes before UWM went on a 18-4 run over the next five minutes to open the lead up to 16 points with eight minutes left. Callahan would drain a pair of three-pointers to close within 12 with 5:43 left but the Jacks would not get any closer.

“It’s going to be tough to win when you can’t get consecutive stops in a row,” Nate Wolters said.

Griffan Callahan led the Jacks with a career-high 20 points in the losing effort. Wolters and Clint Sargent each had 16 but the productivity essentially ended there. No other SDSU player added more than six points.

Tony Meier led the Panthers with a 19 points and five three-pointers. Ja’Rob McCallum was a perfect 4-of-4 from three-point land, finishing with 16 points and Kaylon Williams added 14.

“I think I gave them too much information and it resulted in confusion and led to a lot of our breakdowns.”

SDSU (7-2) had a season-low six turnovers and made it nine straight games allowing less turnovers than their opponent. However, the 14 UWM (5-6) three-pointers was the most allowed by the Jacks since 2006.

“There were just miscommunications on the floor, defensive letdowns. It was more our fault than anything,” Callahan said.

“It’s definitely a tough one to swallow but we’ll just get back on the road and we’ve got three tough on the road straight and get back on track,” Wolters said.