HANCOCK, Mi. A fast and furious rally fell short as the Finlandia University men’s basketball team (0-3) lost 64-55 to Northland College (1-1), Wednesday night at the Paavo Nurmi Center.
“We can’t start a game by going seven-plus minutes without scoring,” said head coach Mike O’Donnell. “We settled way to many times from the perimeter and then turned the ball over on top of that. Not a good recipe for a successful start.”
Northland College came out swinging scoring the first nine points of the game. The Lumberjacks led most of the first half by 10 points or more.
In the second half, Northland College led by 10 with 19:05 when Finlandia began chipping away. The Lions went on a 16-7 run over the next six minutes. Freshman Jaden Janke hit a fade-away to make it 42-41 with 12:33 left.
FinnU stayed within five points for the next six minutes. The Lumberjacks pushed it to nine with 3:13 left. 32 seconds later, freshman Kevin Straih dropped in a trey to make it 61-55. That was as close as Finlandia could get.
“We played better in the middle parts of the game,” said O’Donnell. “To our kids’ credit, we were able to get right back in the game. To Northland’s credit they had some kids step up and help finish the game down the stretch where we just went cold. It’s a learning process for us right now and we’ll have to get back to the drawing board and figure some things out. ”
The Lions out-rebounded Northland College by eight with 35 defensive boards to 11 offensive for the Lumberjacks. FinnU also shot 80% from the line.
For Finlandia, sophomore Dylan Underwood had 17 points, six assists, two steals and shot 6-of-6 from the line. Sophomore Tyler Browner had 11 points, senior Austin Carlson had 10 points and 13 rebounds and Janke had nine points and nine rebounds.
For Northland College, Benny Larry had 21 points with five treys and Modesta Britten had 17 points and 14 rebounds.
Finlandia takes to the road, Saturday, Nov. 17 taking on North Central (Minn.). The game is scheduled to start at 4:00 p.m. CST