Tech Men’s Basketball grinds out a win in its season opener
Bilski paces the attack with 24 points
HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Dawson Bilski scored 24 points to help Michigan Tech men’s basketball over Purdue Northwest 68-59 in Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference men’s basketball Saturday afternoon at SDC Gymnasium. With a win in their 2020-21 season opener, the Huskies extended their program win streak to eight consecutive games going back to the spring.
“We played a good Purdue Northwest team today, a team that already played three competitive Division I exhibitions, so I felt fortunate that we were able to play well enough to win our first time out,” said Michigan Tech head coach Kevin Luke. “We know that the process is still going to take some time in fixing some of the little things but I was happy with how we competed.”
After trading baskets early, Tech found its stride near the midway point of the first half and the team went on a 17-0 run to lead 40-29 at halftime. Bilski and Trent Bell combined for 24 points through the opening 20 minutes with Bell adding four assists as well. He would later finish with eight.
After the break, both teams suffered from slow starts but the Pride began to slowly chip away at the scoreboard and came to within one basket of a tie with under four minutes to play after Mikell Cooper knocked in 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions. The Huskies regrouped after a timeout and both Bilski and Eric Carl both scored to assist MTU to a more comfortable advantage 62-57.
Later, in perhaps Michigan Tech’s most effective possession of the night, Bilski cut to the lane and laid in a scintillating finger roll with the shot clock under five. With just 52 seconds remaining thereafter, Purdue Northwest failed to complete a comeback.
The Huskies (1-0) shot 40-percent from the field and were effective from beyond the arc (11-for-22, 50-percent). Bilski found the netting on 4 of 8 long-range attempts and Carl also drained three. Bell narrowly missed a double-double and finished with a balanced stat sheet of 14 points, five rebounds, eight assists, and three steals. Tyler Robarge contributed five points off the bench.
The Pride (0-1) were led in scoring by Cooper (15 points) and Vincent Miszkiewicz (13 points). Miszkiewicz also hauled in 11 rebounds for his first double-double of the season. Purdue Northwest shot 40-percent overall and hit 33-percent of 17 attempted 3-pointers. PNW also out-rebounded MTU 40-34 and grabbed five steals, compared to 13 for the Huskies.
Carl spent the most time on the floor at a shade over 34 minutes and the Huskies scored 18 points in the paint. Michigan Tech will return Sunday for a 1 p.m. matinee rematch against the Pride at SDC Gymnasium. Fans can listen to the game live on Mix 93.5 WKMJ or watch via livestream on michigantechhuskies.com.
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