As has been the case often during the Dawson Community College Buccaneers 7 game win streak, they found themselves down early, but this time they weren’t able to mount a comeback and come out victorious. The United Tribes Technical College Thunderbirds withstood a late rally and came away with the win 87-75. Turnovers plagued the Bucs in the first half as they coughed it up 15 times before the break. Even when they were able to get a shot off, not many of them went in as they only made 11 out of 31 from the field. For the Thunderbirds, Rob McClain had a big first half with 16 points, 7 rebounds and 4 steals. The largest lead of the half was a 12 point cushion for the home team. The Bucs closed the half on a high note though as Tyrell Harper found Taylan Barrett for a fastbreak lay-up as the buzzer sounded. UTTC led at intermission 39-32.
Similar to the past several games, DCC came out of the locker room strong in the 2nd half and took control of the game on the inside with Harper and Simon Falokun taking turns. They closed the gap to a one-possession game quickly. The teams went back and forth with 7 lead changes and 4 ties. Forward Robert Beaulieu put together 8 points in a row for the home team by hitting two 3-pointers and getting to the free throw line to connect on a pair. His efforts put the Thunderbirds up by 5 points with 10 minutes remaining. Steven Redfox also made a clutch 3-pointer as the shot clock expired on the next possession, but Dawson wasn’t done yet. They got long-range shots from Taylan Barrett and Tate Savoie. Then Falokun and Harper each got inside baskets to pull within two points. On the next possession Harper missed a 3-pointer and then Finn got called for an offensive foul. Sam Pendleton drove the lane and connected on a turnaround jumper on one end and then got a big steal on the other end which led to a lay-up and pushed the lead back to a comfortable six points at 75-69 with less than three minutes remaining. The Bucs could never get closer than that. United Tribes shot a blistering 22-26 from the free throw line in the second half while Dawson was just 8-9. UTTC also scored 32 points off of 23 Buccaneer turnovers.
McClain had a monster night with 24 points, 12 rebounds and 5 steals. Sam Pendleton finished with 15 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists and 9 steals. Tyrel Harper led DCC with 16 points, 16 rebounds and 5 assists. Brent Finn, Tate Savoie and Simon Falokun were also in double digits.
DCC Coach Joe Peterson was disappointed, “If you keep having to play from behind, eventually it is going to come back to haunt you. We forced shots and didn’t take care of the ball tonight. I expect much more from this group than what they showed tonight. They didn’t have the right mindset coming into the game and it showed. We are good enough to play with anyone in the country, but we are also capable of being beat by anyone if we don’t play with effort and teamwork for 40 minutes.”
The loss drops DCC to 21-7 on the season and 7-3 in the conference. They will return home to face Dakota College at Bottineau on Thursday night at 7:30 pm.