GRAND FORKS, N.D. – Junior Jamal Webb scored a career-high 23 points and made all five of his 3-point shots to lead North Dakota to an 86-73 victory over Montana State in Big Sky play Saturday at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center.
Webb was one of three players to score 20-plus points for the home team as UND (5-10, 2-4 BSC) snapped a brief two-game skid and halted a four-game winning streak for the Bobcats (6-8, 3-3 BSC). Classmates Aaron Anderson and Troy Huff were the other two high scorers for UND as they both scored 20 points in the victory.
“This was a total team victory,” UND head coach Brian Jones said. “I really liked the way we came out and responded to Thursday’s loss. Obviously, we got a big night from Jamal and a lot of his shots came within the flow of the offense, which is a key for him, but all of our guards really shared the ball well and when we do that, we will get these kinds of results.”
Webb equaled his season-high with seven assists for the second straight outing and led a 52.8 percent shooting effort from the floor for the home team. His five 3-pointers were also part of a 10-for-19 effort from beyond the arc. He came into the contest having made only 7-of-43 treys on the season.
UND led by as many as 13 in the first half thanks to an 11-0 run that put the Green and White ahead 25-12. That spurt came after opening the game on a 13-5 run, but the Bobcats quickly closed the gap to 14-12 on a jumper by Christian Moon.
UND would lead by double figures again at 33-22 with 6:38 to play, but Moon hit a 3-pointer and Paul Egwuonwu made six straight free throws to close within two points again with 3:57 to play.
Webb had a response though as he made all four of his 3-point attempts in the first half and his fourth trey sparked a 7-0 run in the final two minutes that pushed the home team’s lead to 42-33 at the break. He had 14 first-half points and Huff added 13 in his first start since the season opener at K-State.
Moon and company would not go away in the second half, however, as the Bobcat senior scored 16 of his team-high 21 points after the break. He led his troops all the way back as his fourth 3-pointer of the game made it a 55-55 contest with just over 12 minutes to play. Egwuonwu would give his team its first lead of the game on the next trip down the floor with a jumper.
The teams would trade baskets over the next three minutes before Josh Schuler broke a 59-59 tie with a 3-pointer for the home team with just under nine minutes to play. Huff ignited the season-high crowd of 1,894 in attendance with a steal and an emphatic two-handed slam that put UND ahead 64-61, but Moon would have one more triple left to even the score once again.
Anderson announced his presence with a running floater that he was fouled on. He would convert the 3-point play and UND would never trail again. Senior Jordan Allard had a putback to put UND up by five and Anderson would go 10-for-10 from the foul line in the closing three minutes to seal the win.
Moon led the Bobcats with those 21 points, while Egwuonwu added 16 and Marcus Colbert had 11 to pace the visitors.
Montana State won the battle on the glass, holding a 37-31 edge, but Huff led all players with nine boards in the contest.
UND remains home for two more Big Sky games next weekend to close out a four-game homestand. That begins on Thursday with the first-ever meeting with Eastern Washington at 7:05 p.m.
-- #GoUND --