KENOSHA, Wis. - The Saginaw Valley State University men's basketball team picked up their first victory of the 2011-12 season as they defeated Minnesota Duluth this evening (Nov. 19), 85-75. The Cardinals improve to 1-2 with the victory, while the Bulldogs fall to 2-1 overall on the season.
The Cardinals jumped out early when junior guard Chris Webb (Saginaw, Mich./Arthur Hill HS) connected from the three-point range to give SVSU a 12-7 lead at the 13:52 mark of the first half. The lead would increase to 17-9 when junior Brett Beland (Menominee, Mich.) hit one of his three first half three-pointers. Webb finished the evening with 22 points shooting 7-for-13, while Beland tallied 12 points all in the first half.
Saginaw Valley finished off the half with a 7-0 run as Rob Clark (Saginaw, Mich.) slashed to the hoop for two to take a 43-33 lead into halftime.
The Cardinal lead increased to 60-40 as junior Michael Fugate (White Lake, Mich./Lakeland HS) drove the lane for a bucket with just over ten minutes remaining.
Minnesota Duluth would go on a 22-8 run over the next four minutes to cut the Cardinal advantage to 68-62. However, Fugate would run the lead back up to 75-66 as he knocked down a pair of free throws with 2:30 left in regulation. Fugate would finish the night with 13 points and five assists, including 9-of-12 from the free throw stripe.
Saginaw Valley would hit their last ten free throws of the contest to dash any hopes of a Bulldog comeback as the Cardinals captured the 85-75 victory.
Sophomore Mike Schaaf (Saginaw, Mich./Arthur Hill HS) would earn Meijer "Player of the Game" honors as he recorded a double-double with 11 points and 12 rebounds in 31 minutes of action. Senior guard Greg Foster (Indianapolis, Ind./T.C. Howe HS) added ten points in the victory.
The Cardinals shot 46 percent from the floor including eight three-pointers. SVSU won the free throw battle by going 25-of-31, while the Bulldogs got to the line just 16 times. Saginaw Valley also won the battle on the boards, 38-34.
The Cardinals will make their home debut for the 2011-12 season when they welcome Division I Miami University to James E. O'Neill Arena on Monday (Nov. 21) for a 7:00 PM EST start.