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MBB Preview: Storm take winning streak to Loras

MBB Preview: Storm take winning streak to Loras

INDIANOLA, Iowa -- The Simpson men's basketball team takes its American Rivers Conference-best three-game winning streak on the road Saturday, Feb. 2 when the Storm travel to face the No. 18 Loras Duhawks. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. in Dubuque.

The Storm (12-7, 6-5 American Rivers) held on to beat Wartburg 84-81 on Thursday while the Duhawks (16-5, 8-4) suffered a 96-94 overtime setback against Dubuque on Wednesday.

Andrew Swadner and Rick Wilson will have the call for the audio stream on KNIAKRLS.com. Fans can also watch the video stream on Duhawks.com.

GAME 20
Simpson (12-7, 6-5) at #18 Loras (16-5, 8-4)
Saturday, Feb. 2 | 4 p.m.
Lillis Court | Dubuque, Iowa
Live Video | Live Stats | Live Audio

LORAS SERIES NOTES
Simpson and Loras meet for the 99th time in a series that dates back to 1927-28 … the Duhawks hold a 51-47 lead in the all-time series … Loras won the season's first meeting 85-61 on Jan. 2 in Indianola … the Storm have lost six straight road games in the series … the Storm's last win at Loras came on Jan. 18, 2012, an 82-70 victory.

RECENT RESULTS
Jan. 2, 2019 — L, 85-61 (Indianola)
Jan. 14, 2018 — L, 87-86 (Dubuque)
Jan. 6, 2018 — W, 97-88 (Indianola)
Jan. 25, 2017 — W, 101-95 (Indianola)
Jan. 7, 2017 — L, 73-65 (Dubuque)

ABOUT THE DUHAWKS
Loras and third-year head coach Chris Martin have lost 2 of 3 but are tied for second in the league standings … the Duhawks' win during the stretch was an 84-76 upset of defending national champion Nebraska Wesleyan, snapping the Prairie Wolves' 31-game winning streak in the process … Loras boasts 10th-best scoring offense in the nation at 92 ppg … the Duhawks also rank ninth in free throw percentage (77.9) and 10th in assists per game (19.1) … Ryan DiCanio leads the team in scoring (18.8 ppg) while reigning conference co-MVP Josh Ruggles averages 17.6 ppg.

LAST TIME OUT
Kyle Wagner and Adam Reiter scored 19 points apiece to lead five players in double figures as the Storm beat Wartburg 84-81 on Thursday. Reiter added 11 rebounds for his second straight double-double. Simpson led 40-38 at halftime but mounted a 23-9 run to start the second half and held on down the stretch for its third-straight win.

STORM NOTES

  • Not always known as a rebounding team, Simpson out-rebounded Wartburg 38-34 in Thursday's win. Wartburg owned a league-best plus-5 rebounding margin on the year while the Storm's was plus-0.8.
  • Adam Reiter secured his second-straight double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds in Thursday's win over Wartburg. In his previous double-double, the 6-8 junior pulled down 17 rebounds, the most by a Simpson player since Austin Hennings had 17 on Dec. 14, 2013.
  • Simpson shot 50.9 percent from the field in last Saturday's win over Dubuque, the sixth time the Storm have shot better than 50 percent in a game this season. Simpson is a perfect 6-0 in those games.
  • Simpson exploded for a school-record 18 3-pointers in a 98-89 win at Buena Vista on Wednesday, Jan. 23, breaking the mark of 17 set against Dubuque on Feb 22, 2003. The Storm went 18-for-32 in the game, good for 56.3 percent, second-best in school history.
  • The Storm have been locked in at the free throw line since the calendar changed to 2019. In eight games, Simpson is shooting a blistering 81.3 percent from the line as a team. That's up from 72 percent over the first 11 games.
  • Junior forward Kyle Wagner has established himself as one of the top 3-point shooters in the country. Hitting 52 percent from beyond the arc, Wagner leads the A-R-C and ranks third in the nation. After starting the season averaging 10.7 ppg, he is averaging 19.4 points and shooting 50 percent from the field in the last seven games. He made a season-high seven treys against Buena Vista on Jan. 23.
  • Conor Riordan had his second, 30-point game of the season and fourth of his career when he put up 36 against Coe on Jan. 19. His four 30-point games are the third-most in school history, behind Sam Amsbaugh (7) and David Otte (5).
  • The Storm are third in the conference in scoring (84.6 ppg) and fifth in points allowed (78.5).
  • Junior forward Adam Reiter is the top rebounder in the American Rivers Conference with 143 on the season, good for 7.5 per game. He is averaging 13 points, up from averaging just 2.8 points and 1.8 rebounds as a sophomore.
  • Defensive specialist John Barbee is third in the A-R-C with 36 steals.
  • Head coach Brad Bjorkgren became just the fifth coach in school history to reach 50 career wins with the Storm's 94-69 win at Luther on Dec. 3. He is the second-fastest to reach the mark, needing just 85 games. Bjorkgren is 54-40 in four seasons with the Storm.

UP NEXT
Simpson continues a tough stretch of games when it hosts Luther on Monday, Feb. 4. Start time is set for 8 p.m. at Cowles Fieldhouse.

Storm fall to No. 20 Loras
January 2, 2019 Storm fall to No. 20 Loras
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