North Dakota State Basketball Adds To Storied Tradition

By Demario Phipps-Smith
North Dakota State basketball
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

There are few things that feel as good as redemption. We all fail at things, but when one achieves mastery over these things, the feeling is akin to euphoria.

Last season the North Dakota State Bison lost to South Dakota State in the Summit League Championship.  Many of the Bison leaders got together after the crushing defeat and vowed to be back in the title game.

The upperclassmen of North Dakota State have been pacing the Bison to a stellar 2013-14 season. Four experienced Bison average over 10 points per contest. NDSU as a team is No. 1 in the nation in field goal percentage and is shooting over 50 percent on the season.

Nearly a year since the SDSU loss, NDSU returned to the pinnacle of the Summit tournament and locked horns with the IPFW Mastodons earlier this week. The two squads split the regular season matchup with each team maintaining home-court advantage.

Bisons senior Taylor Braun didn’t want to taste defeat in what could be his final game. The Summit League’s Player of the Year didn’t come this far for a repeat performance. With NDSU leading by a point and less than a minute left in the contest, Braun drove to the hole, got fouled and made the shot. He completed the three-point play and completed his goal of redemption in the 60-57 defeat of the Mastodons.

As usual, March is becoming a prime time for great basketball stories to emerge. Braun and the Bison seniors wrote their own story of success despite that same narrative being snatched away from them just a year prior. This may be what the North Dakota basketball program needs to gain momentum over its three-time consecutive national championship football program.

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