By Tiffany L. Rehbein
Keith Carothers rarely missed as he helped lead the MSU-Northern Lights basketball team to a 105-99 win over the Evergreen State Geoducks Friday at the Kiwanis-Carroll College Shootout held in Helena.
The Lights (6-2) fell to the Warner Pacific Knights 101-87 Saturday.
Carothers scored a team-high 28 points, shooting 7-for-9 from the field, 5-for-6 from 3-point land, and 9-for-10 from the free throw line in the win.
He tallied four treys in the first half, and helped give the Lights a 57-44 lead at the half.
"We ran our break pretty good and shot the ball pretty well," head coach Tim Walker said. "We had times in the first half when we could have had a bigger lead, but we didn't."
Using their balanced perimeter play, the Lights placed four other players in double figures.
Michael Claxton had 13 points, Mel Stubblefield scored 14, Powell Becker notched 18, and Chad Meyer chipped in 13 in the effort.
Russell Keller and Becker each grabbed seven rebounds in the game, while Carothers had six in the effort.
"In the second half, they came out and were able to control the tempo a little bit more," Walker said. "In the second half, we just kind of hung on. Our kids did a nice job of not folding at the end."
The Lights outrebounded the Geoducks 44-27 in the contest.
Krste Serafimoski, who had been out with an injury, played less than five minutes and was the only Lights player who did not score in the game.
Saturday, five Lights players again notched double figures in the 101-87 loss to Warner Pacific.
"We turned the ball over," Walker said. "The number that stands out to me is 30 turnovers. They did some trapping in the half court and it really got us flustered and fed up and we just didn't handle it well."
While the Lights committed 30 turnovers, the Knights turned the ball over only 19 times.
"We give them 30 more possessions; that is one reason why they get more shots than us," Walker said.
The Knights shot 63 percent from the field and were led by Cody Eckman who notched a game-high 37 points. He went 13-for-15 from the field, and connected on five 3-pointers in the contest.
JC Lindeman hit four 3-pointers and scored 17 points in the contest for Northern.
Claxton had a team-high 18 points, while Keller scored 13, Dustin Endsley had 14, and Carothers added 11.
"I thought Michael Claxton had a nice weekend," Walker said. "He shot about 80 percent from the field, and I thought he took great shots."
Carothers shot 85 percent from the floor and Lindeman shot 60 percent from the field.
"We didn't handle the pressure as well as I thought we would," Walker said. "But, now we know and that is one thing we are going to spend some time on so it doesn't happen again."
The Lights travel to Winnipeg to play at a three-day tournament Dec. 3-6.