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    SD Mines MBB: Hardrockers Face RMAC's Top 2 Offenses This Weekend

    RAPID CITY, S.D. --- The South Dakota School of Mines men’s basketball team is looking to shake off a pair of Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference losses from last weekend’s long road trip and get back to its winning ways as the Hardrockers prepare for two more tough RMAC opponents at home this weekend. 

    SD Mines dropped a bout Friday vs. CSU-Pueblo. The ThunderWolves overcame an 18-point second half deficit to defeat the Hardrockers, 87-74. 

    SD Mines held a 14-point advantage at halftime, 44-30, and extended their edge to 18 points at the 16-minute mark. CSUP's captured the momentum and tied the game around the 10-minute mark and then surged ahead to get the win. The Pack outscored SD Mines, 57-30, in the second half of play. 

    The Hardrockers were red hot in the first half, shooting 56.7 percent from the field while CSU-Pueblo found their groove over the final 20 minutes making good on 18-32 shots for 56.3 percent shooting from the field.

    The ‘Rockers let Saturday’s matchup slip away against New Mexico Highlands as the home team secured an 84-56 victory in Las Vegas, N.M. The Cowboys shot 51.7 percent from the field, 44 percent from beyond the arc, and an impressive 11-of-12 from the foul line. 

    New Mexico Highlands was red hot Saturday, outscoring the visitors, 46-32, in the first half and then kept it going over the final 20 minutes outscoring SD Mines, 38-24. 

    The Hardrockers shot 40.4 percent from the field Saturday connecting on 21-52 attempts. SD Mines connected on 5-17 from the three-point line and converted 9-11 from the free throw line. The 'Rockers collected 17 rebounds, recorded seven assists and six steals. 

    SD Mines is now 6-8 on the season and have a 3-6 mark in the RMAC and is listed 10th in the league standings. Halfway through the season, the Hardrockers are scoring 71.6 points per game while the defense is allowing 72.2 a game. The Hardrockers are third in the RMAC in three-point percentage (.404) and first in rebounding defense (allowing just 30 per game). 

    The Hardrockers have three players averaging over 10 points each game. Sophomore Logan Elers leads the team with 13.1 ppg and does most of his damage in the paint while freshman Troy Brady (12.7 ppg) and sophomore Jake Heath (10.6) are delivering on the perimeter. Senior Brian Orr is also starting to surge lately and is good for 9.0 ppg. 

    The ‘Rockers will be back in Goodell Gymnasium this weekend. First on the schedule will be Adams State on Friday night. The Grizzlies come into the game with an 8-8 overall record and are 6-4 in the conference and sit seventh in the RMAC standings. 

    Adams State split last weekend, first dropping a game to UCCS at home, 83-81, and then bounced back with a big victory over MSU Denver, 80-62. Both games were at home in Alamosa.  

    The Grizzlies boast the conference second best offense, scoring 85.1 points per night while the defense is ranked last, giving up 86.2 points each bout. 

    ASU has a number of players that can put up a lot of points. Senior Shane Johnson paces the team, cashing in for 2.2 ppg. He is the RMAC’s third leading scorer. He is followed by the conference’s fourth leading scorer in fellow senior Brandon Sly who is good for 18.9 ppg. Junior Jarrett Givens contributes with 12.9 ppg. 

    The game is slated for 7:30 p.m. Friday at the King Center and will also be streamed live at: . 

    Saturday’s matchup will also be a tall order as the Hardrockers play host to the RMAC top team in Fort Lewis College. The Skyhawks have won five-straight games, are 13-2 on the season and top the RMAC with a 9-1 mark as they head into the weekend ranked No. 21 in the nation. 

    FLC has the No. 1 scoring offense, posting 89.4 points per game while the defense is giving up 77 points per game. The Skyhawks are winning games by 12.4 points. They are shooting just over 50 percent from the field while opponents are only 42.3 percent. Both lead the league. 

    The Skyhawks are a well-rounded team with a deep roster. FLC is led by senior Rasmus Bach (15.2 ppg), followed by junior Marquel Beasley (14.6 ppg, 7.2 rpg), senior Daniel Hernadez (13.9 ppg), senior DJ Miles (12.2 ppg) and sophomore Riley Farris (10.2 ppg). 

    Tipoff is at 5:30 p.m. Saturday and will also be streamed live at: .

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