Men's basketball

Briar Cliff @ Northwestern 8 p.m. Wednesday, February 5, Orange City, IA


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GPAC Championship
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GPAC Tournament
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About BCC

Located in Sioux City, IA, Briar Cliff University is a member of the Great Plains Athletic Conference.
Red Raiders Play Host To Briar Cliff

Game Time...Northwestern College plays host to Briar Cliff in a GPAC men's basketball match-up on Wednesday night, Feb. 5. Tip-off at the Bultman Center is scheduled for 8pm. Northwestern is currently in sixth place in the GPAC with a 6-8 record, 13-11 overall, while Briar Cliff is a game ahead and in fifth place with a 7-7 league mark, 14-10 overall. Watch/listen live to the game via the NWC webcast at the following link: Watch/Listen Now! or follow the live stats at the following link: Live Stats!

All-Time...These teams have played 100 times in a rivalry that began during the 1967-68 season. Northwestern leads the series 57-43 but the teams have split the last 10 meetings. 

Last Time vs Briar Cliff...An early second half run pushed Briar Cliff past Northwestern 91-77 in a conference match-up played in Sioux City, Iowa, on Nov. 12. 

With Northwestern trailing by just two (45-43) early in the second half, Briar Cliff outscored the visitors 16-2 to open up a 61-45 advantage. Northwestern  never got closer than 10 points the rest of the way. 

Northwestern shot 44% for the game and was led by Zack Leeper with 22 points and five rebounds. T.J. Buyert was the only other NWC player in double figures with 11. The Red Raiders held a 39-31 advantage on the boards, including 13 on the offensive glass. 

Briar Cliff shot 53% for the game and 48% (10-for-21) from the three-point arc. Clayton Harreld poured in a game-high 27 points, going 6-for-9 from beyond the arc. Zach Otting netted 19 points, doing most of his scoring at the charity stripe (11-for-11). 

Scouting the Chargers...Briar Cliff has dropped three straight games to fall to 7-7 in the GPAC, owning a one game lead over sixth place Northwestern in the current GPAC standings. Since going 3-0 earlier in January, the Chargers have lost to Dakota Wesleyan, Hastings and Dordt. After earning votes in the national poll earlier this year, the Chargers are now 14-10 overall. 

Nic Nelson returns for his third season as the head coach, seventh overall, after spending time as the assistant for four years. Last year, Nelson guided Briar Cliff to a seventh place finish in the conference with a 10-10 record, losing in the conference semifinals to Dordt to finish 19-12. Nelson lost all five starters and returns seven players off last year's squad. They were picked to finish eighth in the preseason poll. 

Briar Cliff is one of the top scoring teams in the GPAC, averaging 83.3 points per game. They are shooting 48% from the floor and are tied for third in three-point percentage (38%). Defensively, the Chargers are giving up 79 points per game and rank eighth in rebounding (+2). 

Zach Otting ranks sixth in the GPAC in scoring, pouring in 19.3 points per game. The junior is shooting nearly 50% from the field and is fifth in the NAIA in free throw percentage (89%). Clayton Harreld puts in 12.4 points per game and is the Chargers' top perimeter threat with 55 three-pointers, shooting 42% from beyond the arc. Bryan Forbes scores 9.5 points per game while Ricky Torres averages 7.8 points and a team-best 4.5 rebounds per game. 

Northwestern News and Notes...The Red Raiders are currently in sixth place in the GPAC with a 6-8 record, trailing Briar Cliff for fifth place by just one game. They are also a half-game up on seventh place Dakota Wesleyan. Northwestern has won two of its last three games and is undefeated (4-0) at home since the new year. 

Northwestern averages 75 points per game and shoots 45% from the field, ranking eighth and ninth in the GPAC, respectively. They own a + 4 advantage on the boards for the season and are giving up 75 points per game. The Red Raiders are second in the conference in field goal percentage defense (43%). 

Zack Leeper leads Northwestern in scoring, averaging 18.6 points per game. The senior has been a model of consistency, scoring in double figures in every game while posting eight games with 20-or-more points. Leeper also leads the team with 45 three-pointers. Jordan Baker is scoring nearly 12 points per game while pulling down 6.4 boards per game in first season at NWC. The freshman is shooting 56% from the field. Joey Habtemariam scores 9.5 points per game and ranks among the GPAC's leaders in assists (88) and steals (33). 

Up Next...Northwestern will host Doane in another key conference match-up on Saturday, Feb. 8 at 4pm. 

Zack Leeper

# 34 | Guard
Senior from Adair, Iowa

Joey Habtemariam

# 14 | Guard
Sophomore from Sioux Falls, S.D.

T.J. Buyert

# 4 | Guard
Sophomore from Sioux Center, Iowa

Jordan Baker

# 32 | Post
Freshman from Sioux Falls, S.D.