No. 5 Mavs look to rebound after first loss

The polls have spoken. 

After a week in which the Minnesota State men’s basketball team was ranked No. 1 in the National Association of Basketball Coaches Poll, they suffered their first loss of the season. As a result, they dropped to No. 5 in the most recent poll.

Minnesota State is one of three teams in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference to be ranked in the top- 5 of this poll. The other two are No. 16 Minot State, who handed the Mavs their lone loss on the season last weekend, and newly No. 3-ranked MSU Moorhead, who the Mavs play this weekend. 

The Dragons held the No. 1 spot a few weeks ago, but just like the Mavericks, they lost their first game of their season in the week they were promoted to the top rank. The Dragons and Mavericks have a rich playing history that goes back over 80 years. Their first game came back in 1932, where the Mavericks took home a 37-28 victory. In today’s era, that would likely be a low-scoring first half, especially with the offensive firepower both teams possess. This year’s Mavericks team is averaging 91.6 points per game, while the Dragons average just over 80. 

The two teams have relatively similar defensive stats, with the Mavericks allowing an average of .2 points per game more than the Dragons. Each team also holds opponents to under 46% from the field and 33% from three-point range. In what is shaping up to be a game that could determine the top seed in the conference, the teams  appear evenly matched. 

But before they take on the Dragons, the Mavericks will play their first home game in three weeks against another in-state rival, St. Cloud State. The Huskies are right in the middle of the pack in the NSIC with an 8-10 record and are coming off of a loss against the Augustana Vikings. 

The Huskies hosted the Mavericks earlier in the year in the opening week of conference play, where the Mavericks left Halenbeck Hall with a 78-61 victory. Since that day, a quartet of offensive weapons has arisen in St. Cloud. Luke Taylor, Lucas Morgan, Jamiir Allen and Amish Ramlall are all averaging around 10 ppg.

With only 10 games left in the regular season for the Mavericks, every win matters, and they will have the comfort of playing six of the 10 at Taylor Center. Two of those six will be played this weekend, as Friday’s game will begin at 7:30 and Saturday’s at 5:30.

Photo caption: The Mavericks, which were ranked #1 last week, fell to the fifth spot after going 1-1 last weekend against Minot State (L, 81-71) and UMary (W, 87-71). (Courtesy Maverick Athletics)

Write to Hayden Lee at

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