CEDAR CITY (AP) — Maizen Fausett had 13 points and 10 rebounds to lead Southern Utah to a 59-53 win over Montana State on Saturday.
Harrison Butler had 12 points and eight rebounds for Southern Utah (9-5, 2-1 Big Sky Conference). John Knight III added 12 points.
Cameron Oluyitan had 6 points despite coming into the matchup as the Thunderbirds’ second leading scorer at 13 points per game. He was 0-of-4 from 3-point range.
"It was a gritty win," SUU head coach Todd Simon said. "We knew this one was going to be a dog fight. They’re a good team, they’ve got an outstanding big, and obviously one of the best guards in the league. They do a good job, their staff does a good job, so we knew it was going to be a heck of a game. We knew that if we came out and got stops we’d give ourselves a chance, so to hold them to 27 percent is something I’m proud of."
Neither team was able to get much going offensively in the first 20 minutes. Southern Utah trailed 21-17 heading to the locker room at the half, but the Thunderbirds came back in the second half to earn the victory. Both teams set season lows for scoring in the first half. The Thunderbirds’ 17 first-half points were the lowest of the season for the hosts, while the 21 first-half points for the Bobcats marked the fewest of the season for the visitors.
‼️ MAIZ ‼️ pic.twitter.com/Mwf0vWaTU5— SUU Men's Basketball (@SUUBasketball) January 4, 2020
Harald Frey had 14 points for the Bobcats (8-7, 2-2). Amin Adamu added 12 points and nine rebounds. Ladan Ricketts had 10 points.
Southern Utah faces Idaho State on the road on Thursday. Montana State takes on Idaho on the road on Thursday.