PORTLAND, Ore. – Portland State posted an 82-62 victory over Northern Arizona behind a strong shooting night to win their first Big Sky Conference game of the year. The Lumberjacks dropped their second consecutive league game to drop to 5-10 overall and 1-2 in conference play.
"We had way too many turnovers," said Assistant Coach Jay Collins. "We prepared for the press but obviously not well enough. We got down 12 and made a couple mistakes and then they really broke the game open."
The Lumberjacks cut the Viking deficit to six points early in the second half before Portland State (7-8, 1-2 BSC) took control of the game. The Vikings shot 70 percent in the second half, pulling away with a 24-11 run over the first eight minutes of the second half. Overall, the Vikings made 16-of-23 attempts in the final 20 minutes.
Michael Dunn had a career-high 16 points for the Lumberjacks, hitting two three-pointers as part of a 5-for-7 night from the field. He was perfect from the charity stripe, making all four attempts. Junior Gabe Rogers had 13 points, while Durrell Norman notched 11 in the loss.
"I am really proud of Mike," said Collins. "He is an effort-guy. He continued to give effort on both ends of the floor. He is a warrior."
NAU shot just 41.4 percent from the field, while the Vikings hit 62 percent from the field. The Lumberjacks had 23 turnovers in the game, including 13 in the second half that were converted into 12 Viking points. PSU shot seven three-pointers in the game, while NAU went just 3-for-15 for the game beyond the arc.
Portland State had four players in double figures led by 18 points by Charles Odum. Chehales Tapscott had 13 points and a team-best eight rebounds. Lateef McMullean and Michael Harthun added 12 points each.
The Lumberjacks trailed by as many as 13 in the first half before cutting into the lead before the half, trailing by eight at the half. Norman led the Lumberjacks in the first half with nine points, while Rogers had seven points.
The Lumberjacks were coached by assistants Jay Collins and Will Hensley. Interim Head Coach Dave Brown was sick and remained at the hotel during the game.
The Lumberjacks travel to Eastern Washington to face the Eagles on Saturday. The Eagles lost to Weber State Thursday 76-69. Tipoff Saturday is 7:05 p.m. Arizona time from Cheney, Wash.