Rocky Men Get Home Win Over LC State - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Rocky Men Get Home Win Over LC State

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Turnovers at inopportune times during a key stretch of the second half ultimately turned out to be the difference as the Lewis-Clark State College men’s basketball team fell to Rocky Mountain 81-74 in a Frontier Conference contest on Thursday night.

After leading for most of the first half, LCSC tied the contest at 52 on a bucket by Anthony Sullen with 9:15 left in the second half. The Warriors, however, managed only a 3-pointer by Sullen over the next five minutes, which allowed RMC to go on a 13-3 run and take control of the game.

“That was the difference,” LCSC coach Brandon Rinta said. “We had 10 turnovers in the second half. It just seemed like every time we turned the ball over it was a bucket on the other end. I thought our guys battled. It’s tough to win on the road, but we had a few too many defensive breakdowns and too many turnovers to get the road win.”

RMC scored seven straight after Sullen’s bucket tied the game. Chad Kananen, who gave the Warriors trouble most of the night, hit a 3-pointer to start the run, and then two buckets followed as a result of LCSC turnovers.

Sullen hit a 3-pointer to cut the margin to four, but RMC answered with a 6-0 run, again scoring two buckets off of LCSC turnovers.

The Warriors did cut the margin to four twice, the final time with 1:15 left, but Kananen answered with his fifth and final 3-pointer of the contest. LC couldn’t get closer than five the rest of the way.

The loss snapped a three-game win streak for the Warriors and dropped them to 2-2 in conference play and 12-4 overall. Rocky Mountain gained its first conference win and is now 1-2 in league and 8-7 overall.

Although both teams had 16 turnovers in the contest, Rocky Mountain was able to convert LCSC’s turnovers into 23 points.

The Warriors placed four players in double figures. Junior guard Trea Thomas led the way with 16 points and three assists. He made 4-of-7 3-point shots. Doug McDaniel, Isaiah Omamogho, and Sullen finished with 14 apiece. McDaniel and Omamogho finished with three 3-pointers each and McDaniel also collected eight rebounds.

For the game, LCSC finished 26-of-57 from the field for 45.6 percent accuracy, and 11-of-24 from the 3-point line, 45.8 percent. The Warrior finished 11-of-16 at the foul line and had a slight 33-31 rebounding edge.

Kanenen led all players with 22 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field.

For the game, Rocky Mountain was 30-of-61 from the field for 49.2 percent, and 10-of-23 from the 3-point line, 43.5 percent.

Both teams led by 11 points in the contest. LCSC’s largest lead came in the first half. The contest had 12 lead changes and was tied five times.

“We came out and played well the first 10 minutes,” Rinta said. “I thought we were defending well and we had a good lead, but then they went on a run to lock it up. And then it was kind of neck-and-neck for 20 minutes before they had their big run in the second half.”

The Warriors return to action Saturday at 4:30 p.m. against Montana Western in Dillon, Mont.