PORTLAND, Ore.-- Senior Mia Loyd collected her 34th career double-double to lead UND to its fifth straight road win in a 75-62 victory at Portland State Thursday evening in Big Sky Conference play. UND now moves into a three-way tie for the fourth and final spot for a first-round bye in the postseason league tournament.
Loyd finished with 19 points, 10 rebounds and four assists for the Fighting Hawks, part of three players in double figures. Makailah Dyer added 12 while Samantha Roscoe had 11 points and eight rebounds.
"It's a tough game to play and a tough environment here, you have to create your own energy ," UND head coach Travis Brewster said. "I thought we were really good in the first quarter and the second quarter we got stagnant but came out in the second half and did a good job moving the basketball."
That basketball movement led to UND (14-12, 10-5) tallying a season-high 23 assists on 28 made field goals with eight different players notching at least two assists.
North Dakota raced out to a 7-0 lead but Portland State (3-23, 1-14) responded with eight straight to take its first lead. The lead would change hands several times until UND had a 9-0 spurt en route to 24-14 advantage through one quarter. The Vikings would out-score UND in the second frame 22-13, however, to close it within one at the break.
Coming out of halftime, however, the Fighting Hawks again regained control withan 11-4 spurt right out of the gate to lead for good in the third quarter. The lead would balloon to as many as a dozen in that third frame before the home team made one final push.
The Viks would score the final four points of the third and got a quick bucket to start the fourth quarter for a 61-55 game, but that was the closest it would be the rest of the way. UND held PSU off the scoreboard for a nearly six-minute stretch, watching its edge grow to 16 before the bench finished the game off.
North Dakota had previously beaten PSU just once at the Stott Center in four prior meetings. The Fighting Hawks will get another shot at a big road win Saturday when they invade the Hornets' Nest of Sacramento State in search of their first-ever win in that gym. Tip time is slated for 4:00 p.m. Central.
Notes: UND has won 10 of its last 12 overall and is two games above the .500 mark for the first time this season ... UND's 23 assists Thursday marked a new team high for the year (previous best- 17 vs. Western Illinois, Dec. 8) ... North Dakota out-rebounded the Vikings, 43-23, the fifth straight time UND has held a double-figure edge on the boards and the 13th time it has out-boarded a team by 10 or more on the season ... Loyd now has 1,314 career points (15th at UND) and 862 rebounds (7th) ... UND's current five-game road winning streak is its longest since Jan. 17 to Mar. 3, 2012, when it won six straight ... Makailah Dyer moved within striking range of 1,000 career points, reaching 940 in just her junior season.