EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – After losing four straight, the UW-Eau Claire men's basketball team picked up a 65-59 win over Ashford University (Iowa) in the final game before the holiday break on Ken Anderson Court in Zorn Arena today.
The Blugolds led a majority of today's game. The lead changed just five times while it was tied five other times.
Over the first four minutes, Ashford outscored the Blugolds 6-2. After a Jordan Petersen (Sr.-Strum, Wis./Eleva-Strum) layup, the Blugolds took their first lead of the game. They trailed just one other time the rest of the game.
In a low scoring first half, the Blugolds led by as many as seven points and took a 25-22 lead into the locker room.
The second half saw more scoring as the Blugolds finished with 40 while Ashford had 37.
Eau Claire led by as many as nine points on two occasions in the second half, but midway through the half, Ashford went on a 10-0 run to get up by two (46-44). But Petersen hit a jumper in the paint to give the Blugolds a lead with just over six minutes left and Eau Claire led the rest of the way, outscoring Ashford 18-13 over the final six minutes.
Petersen led the Blugolds in scoring with 22 points while Eric Effertz (So.-Ladysmith, Wis.) added 12 and Dustin Kalien (Sr.-Chippewa Falls, Wis./Chi-Hi) finished with 10. Kalien also led Eau Claire in rebounding with eight.
Eau Claire led Ashford in rebounding, 30-23, and shooting from the field, 51.1 percent (24-for-47) to 37 percent (17-for-46). The Blugolds had more turnovers, 15-13, but Eau Claire outscored Ashford on turnovers 19-13.
The Blugolds are now 5-6 overall while Ashford, an NAIA opponent, drops to 9-4.
The Blugolds will be back in action Dec. 28 and 29 when they host the 44th Annual UW-Eau Claire Holiday Classic. The Blugolds will face St. Olaf College (Minn.) Friday and Gustavus Adolphus College (Minn.) Saturday.