The Golden Eagles will attempt to put an end to their eight game losing streak.
The Scoop The University of Minnesota Crookston men’s basketball team returns home for a four-game home stand as they host Augustana University Fri., Feb. 2 and Wayne State College (Neb.) Sat., Feb. 3. Previewing the Golden Eagles The Golden Eagles are seeking to snap an eight-game skid and get tie their program-record with nine victories. Minnesota Crookston has been led by the league’s leading scorer Harrison Cleary, who is averaging 25.1 points per game. Cleary scored a school-record 46 points last weekend against Minnesota State. Cleary is currently second all-time in scoring in school history with 1,192 points. Cleary needs 748 points to surpass Joe Hasz for the school record. In addition, Cleary is just 11 points away from surpassing former Southwest Minnesota State University player Nick Smith for 32nd all-time in conference scoring. In addition to Cleary, freshman Ben Juhl is tallying 10.3 points per game, while Alan Hodge, Jr. is coming off the bench for 15.2 points per game. Gable Smith leads the Golden Eagles in the post with 8.1 points per game. Smith leads the nation in blocked shots as he is tallying 3.6 blocks per game. In addition, Smith is leading the team with 7.1 rebounds per game. Minnesota Crookston is averaging 76.6 points per game, while giving up 74.3 to their opponents. They are shooting 46.3 percent from the field, 39.5 percent from beyond the arc and 78.9 percent from the foul line. The Golden Eagles have been very close in several games this season as they have lost 10 games by 10 or less points. Previewing the Vikings The Augustana men’s basketball team enters the weekend with an 11-7 mark. The Vikings have lost two of their last three games. The Vikings look to guard Jordan Spencer with 16.8 points and 7.7 assists per game. In addition, John Warren is averaging 13.7 points per game. In the post, Marcus Asmus is tallying 11.0 points per game, while South Dakota State transfer Adam Dykman is averaging 10.3 points per contest.In addition, Steven Schaefer comes in tallying 12.9 points per game. Augustana is averaging 83.1 points per game, while giving up 76.5 points per game to their foes. The Vikings are shooting 47.3 percent from the field and 40.4 percent from beyond the arc. Augustana shoots 77.1 percent from the charity stripe. Previewing the Wildcats The Wildcats come in with a 10-10 record. Wayne State has lost two of their last three games, as well. The Wildcats defeated University of Minnesota Duluth in overtime last Saturday. Wayne State looks to Kendall Jacks with 14.0 points per game, while Vance Janssen is tallying 10.0 points per game. Wayne State has Jordan Cornelius in the post, who is tallying 8.2 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. The Wildcats also have Trevin Joseph, Jr. coming off the bench for 11.8 points per game. Their best threat from deep is Goodwin at 43.1 percent, while Janssen is shooting 41.9 percent from beyond the arc. The Wildcats are averaging 75.4 points per game, while allowing 72.1 points per game to their foes. Wayne State is a 47.5 percent team from the field. They come in shooting 36.8 percent from beyond the arc and 72.0 percent from the foul line. #5StoryLines 1. Can the Golden Eagles get consistent production from other players outside of Harrison Cleary? 2. Can the Golden Eagles come up big on the defensive side of the ball? 3. Can the Golden Eagles limit Augustana’s Jordan Spencer, who is one of the best passers in the league? 4. Will Gable Smith continue to be a pest in the paint with his blocked shots? 5. Can Minnesota Crookston control Wayne State’s core of seniors? #46 Minnesota Crookston sophomore guard Harrison Cleary has had a phenomenal start to his young career. The Oak Creek, Wis. native is coming off a career-high 46 points against Minnesota State last weekend. The mark was also a school record and is the most points scored by an NSIC player since Matt Cadwell of Concordia-St. Paul had 46 in 2009. Cleary leads the NSIC in scoring with 25.1 points per game. He is sixth in the nation in scoring and leads the country in free throw shooting at 96.4 percent. #Denied Minnesota Crookston redshirt junior Gable Smith has always been a shot block machine with a school-record 203 blocks. Smith has taken it to a new level this year with an NCAA Division II leading 3.64 blocks per game. He has notched seven games with five or more blocks. Smith has also added to his repertoire offensively as he is tallying 8.1 points per game and a team-high 7.1 rebounds per game. He also leads the team by shooting 60.5 percent from the field. Smith will look to make a positive impact both offensively and defensively this weekend. #ComingIntoHisOwn The Golden Eagles added 6-6 forward Josh Collins at semester break. The junior transfer from Division I University of North Dakota continues to come into his own as he gets into a comfort zone at Minnesota Crookston. Collins is averaging 8.0 points and 3.3 rebounds per game in his last three games. Collins tied a season-high with 10 points against Minot State. He added eight points Saturday against Concordia-St. Paul. #CrownJuhl Golden Eagle freshman Ben Juhl has had a strong start to his young career. The Clive, Iowa native is tallying 10.3 points per game. He comes in shooting 34.5 percent from beyond the arc. Juhl had some tough games against Minot State and Minnesota State, but he was able to rebound and have a strong game against Concordia-St. Paul. Juhl tallied 12 points on 3-of-9 from the field against the Golden Bears. He will look to continue to show improvement heading into this weekend.