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ISU Men's Basketball

Men's Basketball 3/7/2024 12:21:00 PM Ryan Cheney, ISU Sports Information
Men's Basketball 3/7/2024 12:21:00 PM Ryan Cheney, ISU Sports Information

Idaho State Takes on Northern Arizona in First Round of Big Sky Tournament

POCATELLO, Idaho - The Bengals men's basketball squad will open the first round of the Big Sky Conference Tournament on Saturday, March 9th as the 8th seed taking on the 7th seeded Northern Arizona Lumberjacks. Idaho State and NAU split their season series this year, the Bengals winning by two in Flagstaff and the Lumberjacks winning in double overtime just one week ago in Pocatello. The Bengals come into the conference tournament seeking their first tourney win since the 2019-20 season, where Idaho State would down Northern Arizona before the rest of the tournament would be canceled due to COVID. The winner of this game will advance to play 2nd seeded Northern Colorado in the second round on Sunday, March 10th. Scott Gross will call the game on KISU and the game will also be available to stream on ESPN+.

Northern Arizona (14-18)
Home (7-5), Away (6-12), Neutral (1-1)
ISU Recent Series vs. NAU
2/29/2024 H L 88 – 92 (2OT)
2/3/2024 A W 81 – 79
2/6/2023 A W 75 – 70
12/29/2022 H W 79 – 53
2/24/2022 A W 70 – 66

Live Stats

The Lumberjacks come into the game with Idaho State with a 14-18 overall record and 7-11 in conference play, dropping their last two contests to Weber State and Northern Colorado. NAU defeated the Bengals in their 2OT thriller just a week ago, ending a four-game winning streak for Idaho State vs Northern Arizona.

University of Montana Recap
The Griz jumped out to an early 7-2 lead over Idaho State with just 2:30 into the game. Montana would grow their lead to the largest of the first half, at eight, 21-13, with 10:16 remaining in the first half. The Bengals would come within one point of Montana, however, the Griz would head into the halftime break leading Idaho State, 31-27.

Idaho State would be able to knot the game up at 36 all to open the second half, but Montana would proceed to go on an 18-4 run, giving them their largest lead of the game at 14 points, 54-40 with 13:23 remaining. The Bengals would be unable to come closer than nine points the rest of the game, as Montana would go on to win by 14, 79-65. Following the win, Montana will end the regular season 21-10 overall and 12-6 in Big Sky play, as they lock up the 3rd seed in the Big Sky Tournament. After the loss Idaho State will finish off the regular season 12-19 overall and 7-11 in conference play, losing their last three games in a row and five of their last six. The Bengals will fall to the 8th seed in the Big Sky Tournament and will play opening day vs the 7 seed, Northern Arizona, as the Bengals will look to avenge last week's 2OT loss to the Lumberjacks.

Kiree Huie would lead the Bengals in scoring tonight, as four Idaho State players would finish scoring in double figures. Huie would tie his career-high with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting from the field, 11 rebounds, and one assist. Maleek Arington would continue his hot-streak as of late, dropping 14 points, five rebound, and two assists, while fellow starting guard, Miguel Tomley, would end the game with 11 points and two assists. Brayden Parker end the game as the final Bengal scoring in double-digits, as he would drop 11 points, four rebounds, one block, and one steal, and the final starter for Idaho State, Isaiah Griffin, would finish tonight with four points, five rebounds, and one steal. Off the bench for the Bengals, AJ Burgin would record three points, three rebounds, two steals, and one assist in 16 minutes.

After recording one block tonight Brayden Parker is now in sole possession of 7th place on the ISU Single-Season Blocks record book, passing Kelvin Jones (2018-19) after recording his 45th block on the season.

Following his 2 assists in the game, Maleek Arington sits at 148 assists on the season, pushing him into sole possession of 10th place on the ISU Single-Season Assist Leaderboard, passing Craig Murphy (1989-90). Just one assist shy of tying Erin Cowan (1992-93) & Mike Graefe (1985-86) for 8th.

Idaho State finished the game shooting 42.1 percent from the field, and 20 percent from three-point territory, going 2-of-10 from behind the arc. The Bengals tallied 6 assists, 33 rebounds, and 5 steals.

Montana finished the game shooting 60.4 percent from the field and 26.3 percent from three-point land (5-for-19). The Griz finished the game with 30 rebounds, 7 steals, and 15 assists.

The Returning 8
3 Maleek Arington G So. 6-3 200 Auburn, WA
10 Miguel Tomley G So. 6-3 200 Surrey, BC
12 Turner Livingston F R-Fr. 6-4 195 Spokane, WA
13 AJ Burgin G Jr. 6-3 205 San Diego, CA
14 Jordan Hansen G So. 6-6 215 Seattle, WA
20 Briggs Ranstrom F R-Fr. 6-6 205 Eagle, ID
25 Brayden Parker C Gr. 6-8 250 Preston, ID
44 Louis Stormark C R-So. 6-9 250 Alleroed, Denmark                          

Hello my name is
0 Kolton Mitchell G Fr. 6-1 175 Coeur d' Alene, ID
4 Jaedyn Brown G Fr. 6-4 175 Pullman, WA
5 Laolu Kalejaiye G Fr. 6-0 160 Los Angeles, CA
15 Kiree Huie F Jr. 6-9 220 Grayson, GA
21 Isaiah Griffin F Jr. 6-6 210 Knightdale, NC
22 James Bodily G Fr. 6-3 200 Bancroft, ID
30 Evan Otten C Fr. 6-11 220 Redmond, OR
31 Trent Johnson F Jr. 6-7 205 Cambridge, ON
32 Gavin Gilstrap C Jr. 6-11 270 Spokane, WA

Bengal Bites

  • Brayden Parker is 3rd on the ISU career Blocks list with 119, passing Nate Green after recording 2 blocks in the Bengals game vs Northern Arizona on Feb. 29th
  • Brayden Parker became the 25th player in Idaho State history to reach the 1,000-career point mark after dropping 24 points in the Bengals' game vs Montana on Dec. 30th
  • Parker moved into 11th place on the ISU All-Time Scoring list with 1,291 career points. Passing David Schroeder (1,265) after recording 19 points vs Northern Colorado on March 2nd
  • Maleek Arington is now 9th All-Time in Steals at Idaho State with 111, passing Jim Potter (1991-95) following his 4 steals vs Northern Colorado on March 2nd
  • Brayden Parker is 4th in the Big Sky in Field Goal Percentage, making 53.9% of his shot attempts (69th in the country)
  • Brayden Parker is 3rd in the Big Sky in Blocks (45) & 4th BPG (1.45)
  • Kiree Huie is 5th in the Big Sky in Blocks (39) & BPG (1.26)
  • Kiree Huie is 3rd in the Big Sky in Offensive Rebounds Per Game (2.19)
  • Maleek Arington is 2nd in the Big Sky and 47th in the nation in Assists (148) & 3rd in the Big Sky in APG (4.8)
  • Maleek Arington is 2nd in the Big Sky in Steals with 72 (9th in the nation) & 2nd in the Big Sky in SPG with 2.32 (12th in the country)
  • After Maleek Arington's second 50-minute game of the season on Feb. 29th vs Northern Arizona he is now 2nd in the Big Sky and 8th in the nation in Minutes Per Game (36:55)
  • Maleek Arington is 4th in the Big Sky in Assist/Turnover Ratio (1.92)
  • Miguel Tomley is T-1st in the Big Sky in 3-Point FGM (73) & 2nd in 3-Point FGM Per Game (2.42)
  • ISU has had a big defensive presence down low, averaging 3.7 blocks per game (1st in the Big Sky)
  • Idaho State has been stingy on defense, plucking 7.1 steals per game (3rd in the Big Sky)
  • The Bengals defense is only allowing 70.2 PPG to opposing teams (2nd in the Big Sky)
  • Multiple Bengals have climbed into the single-season record books
    • Maleek Arington has passed Craig Murray (1989-90) for 10th most assists in a Single-Season in ISU history with 148
    • Arington has accumulated 72 steals this season, moving him to 3rd on the ISU Single-Season Steals list, he needs just two more to tie Ethan Telfair (2015-16) for 2nd All-Time and 10 behind Jim Rhode who set the Bengal Single-Season Steals record at 82 in the 1988-89 season
    • Brayden Parker is 7th on the Single-Season Blocks list, currently with 45 & T-8th on the Single-Season BPG list, averaging 1.45 blocks per game
    • Miguel Tomley has now made 75 three-pointers this year, moving him into 8th place All-Time in a Single-Season. Tomley needs just 7 more to tie Tim Erickson (2000-01) for the most 3PM in a Single-Season in Bengal history.
    • Kiree Huie moved into 10th place on the Single-Season Blocks list, passing Scott Henry (2003-04) after recording a career-high 4 blocks vs Northern Colorado on March 2nd.

Looking AheadFollowing their opening round game on Saturday, the winner of #8 Idaho State and #7 Northern Arizona will have #2 Northern Colorado waiting for them in round two the following day, Sunday, March 10th.

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Follow along at to keep up to date with the team. Fans can also follow the Bengals on social media (Twitter: @IdahoStateMBB | Instagram:@Idahostatembb | Facebook:@IdahoStateMensBasketball)