FLAGSTAFF – Senior Eric Platt highlighted senior night with a game-high 21 points to lead Northern Arizona to a 79-52 victory over Portland State to close out the regular season. The Lumberjacks host No. 5 seed Montana State in the Big Sky Tournament quarterfinals on Saturday at the Rolle Activity Center.
“I always worry about how seniors are going to perform on senior night and how the emotion is going to get to them,” said Head Coach Mike Adras. “I don’t think that happened tonight. I thought our seniors were absolutely terrific.”
Platt scored 17 of his 21 points in the first half, hitting five three-pointers and going 6-for-8 from the field. The Lumberjacks shot 64 percent in the opening half and only led after the first basket of the game.
NAU went on a 13-4 run to start the game with the help of six points by DeAngelo Jones and three-pointers by Platt and Cameron Jones. The Lumberjacks led by as many as 19 points in the first half.
Portland State struggled from the field the entire game, shooting just 28 percent from the field and were out-rebounded 34-24. NAU hit 57 percent for the game and nailed 10 three-pointers in the contest, including seven in the first half.
Jones finished with 14 points, while Durrell Norman chipped in nine points with five boards. Stallon Saldivar had eight assists and seven boards and Shane Johannsen tied his career-high with five blocks to go with five boards.
Johannsen broke the NAU single-season block mark with his final swat, finishing the regular season with 71, one better than Dan McClintock’s season record of 70. Jones also reset the single-season scoring mark, passing Kyle Landry’s single-season mark of 561 points.
Julian Olubuyi had six points and six assists with two steals.
“I think we are playing fairly well and how we are playing the month of February,” said Adras. “It is good time to be playing well and I feel good about having a home game. Hopefully we can use that to our advantage.”
The Lumberjacks play their final home game of the season, hosting Montana State Saturday at 6:35 p.m. The Bobcats finished their season with am 84-68 victory over Idaho State to clinch the No. 5 seed. Eastern Washington is the sixth seed, posting a victory at Weber State on Wednesday. Northern Colorado clinched the top seed and the right to host the conference semifinals and finals March 8-9 in Greeley.
Weber State will host Eastern Washington in a rematch of Wednesday’s game. The two winners advance to the championship site to face either No. 1 Northern Colorado or No. 2 Montana.