Frustration boils into victory


Sophomore guard Laytwan Porter looks to set up his offense Wednesday at the Convocation Center against University of Idaho. Porter was ejected in the second half after drawing his second technical foul, but the Huskies still won.

By Tom Burton

DeKALB | Sophomore guard Laytwan Porter scored a team-high 12 points and added two rebounds as men’s basketball (3-0) defeated Idaho University, 63-49, Wednesday night.

Three Huskies, including Porter, scored in double-figures in a game which saw both teams shoot under 40 percent from the field.

Senior center Marin Maric praised the effort of his team in a tough game in which the coaching staff was forced to go deep into their benches.

“We usually don’t practice with the lineups we used today,” Maric said. “We found a way to win and that is always the most important thing.”

Following a 21-21 tie in the first half, the Huskies came out strong in the second half. This was partially because of Porter’s shooting, who knocked down three 3-point shots in the first three minutes of the second half.

“The difference is that we actually made some shots [in the second half],” Maric said. “We opened up the three-point line, which eventually opened up everything else on the floor.”

In a game where both teams showed frustration with the officiating, Porter was ejected shortly after halftime when he recorded his second technical foul of the game.

Head Coach Mark Montgomery said Porter will use this game as a learning experience, but getting ejected from a game is not something to be proud of.

“The officials told both teams to just play ball and stop talking,” Montgomery said. “These players are 18 to 22 years old and these games can get highly competitive. At the same time, you have to respect the officials and play ball.”

The Huskies shot 40 percent from the field for the game, which inlcuded shooting 27 percent in the first half. Montgomery is satisfied with his team’s progress on the defensive end of the floor but says the offense still needs some work.

“The team is still trying to figure out each other,” Montgomery said. “I’m happy [we started] 3-0, and we just have to continue to find a way to win games.”

After a 3-0 start to the season, Montgomery said the coaching staff is still searching for the correct balance of minutes and the right situational lineups.

“In this league, you have to have a bench, and we are definitely going to need them as the season continues.”

The Huskies will tip-off their first road game against California State University-Northridge at 10 p.m. Saturday in Northridge, California, before heading home to play in the NIU Thanksgiving Classic beginning 7 p.m. Wednesday against California Polytechnic State University.

The Thanksgiving Classic will continue through the holiday weekend and conclude 3:30 p.m. Nov. 26 against University of Illinois-Chicago.