GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Junior Madi Buck helped UND shrug-off a slow start, leading all scorers with 22 points as North Dakota defeated Mayville State 79-58 in the team's final exhibition game of the preseason on Tuesday at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center. Buck led four UND scorers in double figures as the home team pulled away in the second half, outscoring the Comets 45-30.
North Dakota missed multiple opportunities underneath from the get-go and the visitors claimed a 7-0 lead. Buck's jumper at the 15: 49 mark finally got the home team on the scoreboard and UND went to work on gaining control. After North Dakota closed to within one on six different occasions, the Green and White would take their first lead on a Williams pull-up jumper with 2:17 to go in the half and never looked back.
At the break, UND held a six-point cushion, but out-rebounded its opponent, 30-20 and had 16 offensive rebounds. After Buck started the game 1-of-7 from the floor, the Bismarck, N.D. native went 7-of-10 the rest of the way as North Dakota pulled away in the second stanza.
After opening the game shooting just 31.7 percent from the floor in the opening 20 minutes, UND regrouped to shoot 50 percent after the halftime to widen its margin. A 13-0 run early in the second frame put the game out of reach.
Buck complemented her 22-point effort with a game-high nine rebounds as her team outrebounded the visitors 52-33 in the contest. Half of those boards were on the offensive. Besides their dominance on the glass, the Green and White also forced 25 turnovers and had 17 steals.
Williams and center Emily Evers each had three steals to pace the team. Smart had a team-high five assists.
Liza Hoglo and Angela Tauer each had 10 points off the Mayville State bench to pace the Comets in scoring.
UND will open the regular season on Sunday with a home contest against Harvard at 2 p.m. at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center.