Atchison, Kan. – Head Coach Ben Limback’s squad took a trip south, facing off against Benedictine College (Kan.) on Saturday night (Nov. 11). Turnovers plagued the Bulldog offense, but healing power came from 60 percent second half perimeter shooting and 50 total rebounds which led to a 74-61 road win over the Ravens. With this win over Benedictine, Ben Limback has now won 300 games as a head coach. He has 185 wins as the front man of the Bulldogs, and 115 at Concordia University, Ann Arbor. Forward Tristan Smith clutched his first double-double (15 points & 14 rebounds) of the year, even being in foul trouble a majority of the match. Noah Schutte gathered a team high 16 points, nine rebounds and three assists, just shy of a double-double .
Concordia moves to 3-0 early in its 2023-24 campaign before plunging into the deep waters of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) on Wednesday (Nov. 15). Coach Limback spoke on what led to the first half turnovers and how they created a double digit lead after halftime.
“They did a great job of preventing us from getting out in transition and in the halfcourt we weren’t moving the ball very well. At halftime, we said we needed more player movement off the ball. They were very strong in the gaps defensively and we were over-dribbling. We kept trying to go places where there weren’t opportunities. In the second half, I thought we were a little better and Tyler (Harre) gave us a huge lift off the bench. He’s a guy who can really shoot it and he did a great job of moving without the ball. He kept getting himself in rhythm to make those shots, that’s when we really extended our lead. I also thought Tristan, despite his foul trouble, gave us a big lift on rebounds and putbacks.”
The Ravens’ defense flocked to the ball, especially in the first half, where they caused 12 turnovers (20 total), forcing a tight game in the first 20 minutes. With a 26-23 advantage over Benedictine, the Dawgs ran out the break with a 17-6 run in the first seven minutes of the second half. During the run, Smith had six points off two field goals and two free throws, with Brad Bennett scoring five of his nine total points, helping Concordia to the eight-point lead.
At the end of the run, freshman Tyler Harre bottomed two three-pointers forcing a timeout by the home team. After pushing the lead to double digits (43-29), the Scottsbluff High School product drained two more from beyond the arc. CUNE made six of their first seven from the perimeter, charging toward their biggest lead (18) of the game with less than 10 minutes to go in the contest.
Up 56-38, Concordia attacked the basket and drew fouls late, scoring 12 of their last 18 points from the foul line. Schutte scored nine of his 16 from the charity stripe, making four of the final 12.
The Ravens cut the lead late to single digits (nine) using three-pointers but missed too many shots late as the Bulldogs commanded the defensive glass in a 38-24 advantage.
Benedictine falls to 1-2 with their solo win (76-64) coming against Haskell College (Kan.).
Concordia (3-0) starts their trek up the GPAC mountain facing No. 19 Morningside (2-1) in Friedrich Arena on Wednesday (Nov. 15). Tip-off is set for 7:45 p.m. CT in Seward, Neb. The Bulldogs went 0-2 against the Mustangs in the 2022-23 season.