CSU basketball runs past Chadron State at home

It was clear early on that CSU wasn’t going to let Division-II Chadron State hang around.

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The Rams got off on a 24-2 run to start the game and never looked back, en route to a 93-50 victory Thursday night.

The large early lead allowed many reserves on the bench for the Rams to come in the game, who never allowed the lead to go lower than 28 at any point during the second half.

“We were in a lot of good spots; we made a lot of good plays early,” senior guard Greg Smith said. “And then just seeing those guys come in and keep it going you know, they didn’t miss a beat when they came in. Everybody played hard tonight.”

The Rams were again led by the play of senior center Colton Iverson, who led the team with 18 points and added 9 rebounds and 4 steals.

Iverson imposed his will on Chadron State, shooting 87.5 percent from the floor thanks to multiple looks down low that afforded him the opportunity to work on his post game.

The play of Iverson and the rest of the starters for CSU allowed for a total of 11 Rams to take the floor Thursday night thanks to the early lead. Those reserves managed to post 48 bench points for the Rams, compared with just 26 from Chadron State’s bench.

“It was a good game all-around for everybody,” Iverson said. “We got 48 bench points, that’s huge. And then we just put together a complete game I thought, especially after last game (against Montana) was kind of sloppy here and there. I thought we played a pretty complete game.”

One starter who played only a few seconds was senior guard Dorian Green, who was allowed to continue his streak of 98 consecutive starts despite having a concussion.

Green stepped onto the floor to start the game, Iverson won the opening tip-off then coach Larry Eustachy called a timeout and sophomore guard Jon Octeus was subbed in for Green.

“I just thought it was the right thing to do,” Eustachy said. “This is kind of special, this kind of a Cal Ripken type thing it really is. … I thought he deserved it, so we said we had to get the tip to him. He’s been cleared, but he still has to do a couple tests. But we anticipate him being back. We’re off tomorrow; he’ll be back Saturday for practice, and he’ll definitely play against Denver.”

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The combination of the lopsided score, Green’s injury and early foul trouble again for Wes Eikmeier provided the perfect storm for sophomore guard Jon Octeus, who scored 13 points in 31 minutes of playing time.

“I thought he was terrific,” Eustachy said of Octeus. “He was really disappointed in how he played against Montana. I really challenged him after the game. … He has a lot of pride; I think you can see that.”

Octeus and the rest of the Rams will now prepare for their next game at the University of Denver next Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Men’s Basketball Beat Reporter Andrew Schaller can be reached at sports@collegian.com.