MASON CITY, IA – The Bay Norse (0-1) would see their shooting percentage take a nose dive in the second half as the Ellsworth Community College Panthers (1-0) would pull away for an 80-60 victory in the Konigsmark Klassic hosted by North Iowa Area Community College.
The Norse would lead multiple times in the early going, but could not shake the Panthers throughout the first half. Bay would shoot 45.2% in the first half, including eight of 18 from the three point arc in the opening half. Ellsworth would put pressure on the Norse all night long, forcing 13 first half turnovers, and creating opportunities toward the basket. Bay would send the Panthers to the free throw line 12 times in the first half, and Ellsworth would connect on ten of those attempts. It looked as though the game would end up tied at intermission, but with just a few seconds left a long inbounds pass up the right side to Reggie Dean (FR, Milwaukee, WI) would give him a look at a deep three, which we would convert with a defender in his face as the time ran out. Bay College would go to the locker room with a 39-36 lead.
While Bay College would grab their biggest lead early in the second half, the fortunes would turn quickly for the Norse in the second half as they would fall victim to poor shooting. Bay college would hit on just six of 22 attempts in the latter frame, and only convert one of eight shots from behind the arc. Meanwhile Ellsworth would build a lead with quality shots, shooting 52% from the floor. Furthermore they would continue to put pressure on Bay by getting to the line and converting there. They would convert 13 of 16 attempts from the charity stripe in the second half, while the Norse continued to shoot poorly from the free throw line, converting on just eight of 17 attempts in the second half.
"It was a tale of two halves," said second year Haed Coach Matt Johnson. "We did some really nice things at times, but didn't stay disciplined enough to get a win. We need to be more consistent. It is a learning opportunity for us and I think this group of kids will respond well."
Alfonzo Fields would lead the Norse in scoring, ending with 16 points, six rebounds, three assists, and two steals. Dean would add 13 points, while Kobi Barnes (SO, Milwaukee, WI) would score nine points while grabbing nine rebounds.
LJ Harris (SO, Kankakee, IL) would lead all scorers with 25 points. Byron Brown (FR, Houston, TX) would score 13 points and grab seven rebounds, while Jamal Antoine (SO, Houston, TX) would add 12 points. Devonte Sims (FR, Rockford, IL) added 11 points and six rebounds to the effort.
The Norse will play North Iowa Area Community College tomorrow evening. That tip is scheduled for 6 pm.