Lipscomb's Bisons opened the 2004-2005 basketball season on the road Sunday afternoon with a 83-66 loss at Williams Arena to the Minnesota Golden Gophers of the Big 10.
The Bisons made a strong run, especially in the first half, but in the end the size and strength of the Minnesota team prevailed.
"We were concerned about their inside game _ their size and their strength," said Lipscomb coach Scott Sanderson. "They're just big. We knew they were bigger than we are."
Sparked by seven points from sophomore guard Brian Fisk, the Bisons took the lead at 16-12. The Bisons relinquished the lead with 6:18 on the clock at 27-24, but rallied to take a 32-27 advantage with 2:46 remaining in the half,
However, an 11-2 run by the Golden Gophers gave them a 38-34 lead at the half.
The Golden Gophers picked up the defensive intensity in the second half. After giving up five 3-pointers to the Bisons on eight attempts in the first half,, Minnesota stopped the Bisons on 3-pointers with only two unsuccessful second half shots.
With 13 minutes left the Bisons led 52-49, but Minnesota pulled away with an 8-0 run.
The Bisons shot 45.1 percent from the field.
Minnesota was led by Vincent Grier with 23 points and Dan Coleman with 21. Minnesota shot 55 percent from the field. The Golden Gophers also had 14 steals and 12 blocks.
"This is team where every opponent we play, whether it's Lipscomb or whomever, we need to be pleased to come away with a win," said Minnesota coach Dan Monson. "We had a sense of urgency on the defensive end in the second half.
"Lipscomb was five-of-eight in the first half from 3-point range, and those are like daggers."
The Bisons are back home in Allen Arena Tuesday night to face Savannah State at 7.