Norse defeat Cleveland State to create 5-game winning streak
January 20, 2020
The Northern Kentucky men’s basketball team captured their second win in three days Saturday night against the Cleveland State Vikings. The win marks five straight conference wins for the Black and Gold.
Sophomore guard Trevon Faulkner led the way for the Norse with 24 points on 8-of-10 shooting from the field. Senior guard Tyler Sharpe also helped the Norse with 18 points on 4-of-9 shooting, including three 3 pointers. Sophomore forward Adrian Nelson had a very efficient night, shooting 80 percent from the field (4-of-5) for eight points.
In the first half the Vikings kept it competitive until the 13:03 mark when the Black and Gold scored 18 unanswered points taking the game clock down to the 5:06 mark. This run sparked the Norse as they would never trail again in the ballgame, taking a 38-21 lead into the locker room at halftime.
“We know we are going to get every team’s best shot,” Faulkner said. “So, our mentality is just to compete and do the best we can on the defensive end of the floor.”
During the second half the Norse did not let up, pushing their lead as high as 32 points with 3:16 left in the game. The Norse were excellent from the charity stripe tonight as they shot 88 percent (22-25).
“We just wanted to come in and have the same exact mindset that we’ve been having,” Sharpe said.
The Norse are now 11-0 when they hold opponents below 64 points. It is the first time in almost two years that the Norse have held an opponent under 50 points.
In addition to his scoring efforts Nelson pulled in 10 rebounds, four of which were offensive boards.
“I understand my role on this team now,” Nelson said. “They need me for rebounding, so I need to make sure I capitalize on my role on the team.”
Head coach Darrin Horn acknowledged Cleveland State’s physical style of play. Cleveland State only shot five three pointers the entire game, the majority of their shots came in the paint.
“The important thing is that we keep getting better individually and as a team, and I think we did that tonight,” Horn said.
Next up for the Norse is a primetime matchup against Horizon League foe Wright State. The game will take place at the Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio. Tip is set for 9 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPNU.