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Hot first-half shooting led by freshman Tal Diekvoss's career-high 21 points led the Lakeland College men's basketball team an 88-75 win over Northland International University in a non-conference matchup Saturday night in the Moose and Dona Woltzen Gym.
It was an up and down battle in the opening minutes for the Muskies and Pioneers, but Lakeland's 75 percent shooting from behind the 3-point arc lifted them to an 18 point advantage heading into the locker room.
The Muskies (8-6, 3-3 NAC) hit 12-of-16 3-point attempts in the first-half with six of those coming from Diekvoss (Beaver Dam, Wis.).
Head coach Aaron Aanonsen was pleased with the team's energy and efforts.
"We came with a lot more intensity tonight," said Aanonsen. "We forced 11 first-half turnovers and we got some really good looks at the rim."
The Pioneers, led by Jon Conover's 21 points, made a run in the second-half to cut the led to six, but Lakeland's defense proved too much. The Muskies forced 19 turnovers that turned into 22 points and had 41 bench points, while Northland's bench produced only 14 points.
"In the second-half the game tightened up," said Aanonsen. "We got a little careless and too aggressive at times. Overall, we were able to stay composed to keep the lead."
Junior guard Bobby Komorowski (Germantown, Wis.) posted 19 points, a game-high eight rebounds and three assists. Freshman forward Justin Ward (Wisconsin Dells, Wis.) scored 12 points to go along with three rebounds and two assists.
For the game, Lakeland shot 46. 2 percent from the field, 64 percent from behind the arc, and 68.6 percent from the charity stripe. The Pioneers ended the night 43.4 percent from the field, 45 percent from behind the arc and 74.1 percent from the free throw line.
See what Tal Diekvoss had to say about his career- high 21 points http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TB4hIj11bo0
Lakeland returns to Northern Athletics Conference action on Tuesday, Jan. 18, as they travel to Mequon, Wis., to take on first-place Concordia, Wis. Game time is set for 7 p.m.