Davison has big night as EWU pulls away from North Dakota

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Davison has big night as EWU pulls away from North Dakota

EWU junior guard Jacob Davison drives to the hoop for a layup. Davison scored 39 points Sunday, two away from tying his career-high.

EWU junior guard Jacob Davison drives to the hoop for a layup. Davison scored 39 points Sunday, two away from tying his career-high.

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner

EWU junior guard Jacob Davison drives to the hoop for a layup. Davison scored 39 points Sunday, two away from tying his career-high.

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner

EWU junior guard Jacob Davison drives to the hoop for a layup. Davison scored 39 points Sunday, two away from tying his career-high.

By Drew Lawson, Sports Editor

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With 11:28 to play in the EWU men’s basketball game against The University of North Dakota Sunday, the Eagles trailed 62-61. EWU then rode the hot hand of junior guard Jacob Davison and didn’t look back. Davison scored 13 points in the final nine minutes and 39 points for the game as EWU (5-3) pulled away from UND (4-7), winning 98-82.

EWU head coach Shantay Legans attributed EWU’s ability to retake and extend its lead to Davison’s offense and sophomore guard/forward Kim Aiken Jr.’s defense. Aiken switched onto UND’s top wing, Marlon Stewart, and held him to just one point in the last ten minutes on 0-5 shooting from the field. Stewart finished with 14 points total, just below his season average of 14.5.

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner
EWU sophomore guard/forward Kim Aiken Jr. (center) lines up next to UND’s Marlon Stewart (right). Aiken guarded Stewart in the last ten minutes of Sunday’s game and didn’t allow Stewart to make a shot from the field.

“We usually try to hold Kim off so he doesn’t pick up fouls early and then put him on the best player at the end,” Legans said. “He’s probably one of the best defenders in our conference.”

Davison’s 39 points were two away from his career high of 41, set last year against Northern Arizona. Davison said this game felt different than the game against NAU, mostly because it was much more competitive.

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner
EWU junior guard Jacob Davison drives in for the slam. Davison had five steals in addition to his 39 points Sunday.

Davison also said the team felt that he could have a big night going into the game because they felt he had the biggest mismatch to take advantage of.

“We talked about it throughout the week,” Davison said. “Whoever had the mismatch, we would put them in the ball screen. It just happened to be me, so it worked out great.”

Davison also contributed five steals, while Aiken had 3 steals in addition to his double-double of 11 points and 15 rebounds. EWU had 25 points off turnovers to UND’s six, which ended up being a key statistic in EWU’s victory.

“The way we’ve been playing defensively has been really good,” Legans said. “We did a good job with our activity, getting a lot of deflections. … We got 50/50 balls when they counted.”

EWU had 11 steals and UND had just three.

Mckenzie Ford for The Easterner
EWU freshman point guard Ellis Magnuson makes a move in the paint. Magnuson scored 14 points and dished out six assists Sunday.

EWU had five players in double figures. In addition to Davison’s 39 points and Aiken’s 11, freshman point guard Ellis Magnuson scored 14 points and dished out six assists, while senior forward Mason Peatling scored 12 points and sophomore forward Tanner Groves came off the bench to score 11.

EWU will next play in the second game of a three-game homestand on Friday, Dec. 13 against Multnomah University. Tip-off is at 6 p.m.