BILLINGS, Mont. – Steven Larson made all 11 shots he took Friday night en route to a career-high 25 points. Dixie State shot a program-best 70.9 percent from the field in defeating the host Yellowjackets of MSU Billings 90-77 in Alterowitz Gymnasium.
Larson was one of four players to have a perfect shooting night for the Red Storm (3-0). Derek Owen was 6-of-6 for 12 points in 13 minutes. Zach Robbins had 10 points on five shots while DeQuan Thompson (4-4 FG) added nine points.
“At Treasure Valley (Community College), I was the one guy,” Larson said. “But here at Dixie, we have so much good talent that game-by-game someone can step up and do what we do as a team.”
The Red Storm, six days removed from shooting over 60 percent in a home win over Colorado Mesa, dominated the paint all night and ended with a 50 to eight advantage. Dixie State hit 39 of 55 shots to eclipse the previous single-game high of 64 percent in a 2010 game at Notre Dame de Namur.
Head coach Jon Judkins thought his team had a distinct advantage down low.
“There’s things we saw on film,” Judkins said. “We’re getting the ball inside and they are playing strong. We are not settling for fadeaways.”
Hot shooting was needed since the Yellowjackets (1-1) scored their first 12 points from behind the arc. After MSUB closed the lead to four, 27-23, at the 9:51 mark, the Jackets failed to make a basket for over four and a half minutes. The Red Storm used the opposing drought to go on an 8-0 run sparked by four layups.
A late three-ball from Cameron Cusworth put the DSC halftime advantage at 47-39.
Larson and Dalton Groskreutz went to work in the second half extending the lead to 14 points by scoring the team’s first eight points of the half. MSUB would close within nine at the 13:38 mark before the Storm outscored the Jackets 20-10 behind three straight shots by Groskreutz, three-balls from McKay Massey and Thompson and a layin from Kimball Payne.
The final field goal came with 2:28 left on an extra pass assist from Massey to Groskreutz in the corner for three.
Omar McDade and Sam Johnson led the Yellowjackets with 17 points each.
Dixie State continues on the road next week with two games in the Clarion Inn Thanksgiving Classic. Friday, the Storm meet Fort Lewis at 3 p.m., then face the host Mavericks of Colorado Mesa on Saturday at 7 p.m.
John Potter is the "Voice of the Red Storm" and an athletic media relation assistant at Dixie State College. Contact him at Potter@dixie.edu.
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