St. Thomas, River Falls open Bank on Friday night

More news about: St. Thomas
St. Thomas forward Connor Bair shoots over UW-River Falls forward Austin Jackson in the first half of the teams' contest at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. (Photo by Ryan Coleman,
St. Thomas forward Connor Bair shoots over UW-River Falls forward Austin Jackson in the first half of the teams' contest at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. He finished with 23 points and 10 blocked shots. More photos from this game.
Photo by Ryan Coleman,

St. Thomas and UW-River Falls played the first-ever basketball game in U.S. Bank Stadium, the site which will host the 2019 Division I men's basketball Final Four, and Washington U. defeated No. 25 Pomona-Pitzer in Friday night's men's action, while Millsaps handed No. 19 Austin College its first loss of the season in Friday's women's action.

The Tommies got 23 points and 10 blocked shots from senior forward Connor Bair as the teams played in front of a few thousand fans in the first game of a doubleheader featuring one Division III game and one Division I game. 

Bair opened the scoring for the Tommies with a layup less than 20 seconds into the game and St. Thomas never trailed, extending the lead to 10 with Bair's only 3-pointer of the night. That shot capped an 11-2 run for St. Thomas (4-1). UW-River Falls (4-2) cut the lead to six on a three-point play by Nathan Macho, Jr., and to five when Clay Seifert hit a 3-pointer with 10:37 left, but St. Thomas scored the next 10 points and never led by fewer than eight points the rest of the night.

Justin Hardy scored a team-high 21 points and Washington U. held off Pomona-Pitzer to knock off the No. 25 Sagehens, 66-62. Jack Gale drained a 3-pointer with 4:12 left to give P-P a 61-60 lead, but Jack Nolan answered with a 3-pointer at the 2:00 mark and the Bears went 3-for-4 from the line to seal the win. It was the Sagehens' first loss of the season, while the Bears improved to 4-2.

The Liberty League got underway on Friday night, with Ithaca scoring the first 11 points and cruising to an 87-68 win vs. Vassar. Riley Thompson went off in the second half as he scored 17 points to total 27 on the night. He shot 8-for-15 overall, 5-for-7 from distance and a perfect 6-for-6 at the free throw line.

In women's action, Millsaps avenged a mid-November loss and capped off November with a 70-61 win vs. No. 19 Austin College. Millsaps trailed by four to start the fourth, but a pair of Anna Wilson free throws and a Morgan McCrea 3-pointer gave the Majors their lead back, which they wouldn't relinquish again. Millsaps hit all eight free throws down the stretch to secure the win and move to 6-1 on the season while sending the Roos to their first loss. McCrea was 3-for-6 from beyond the arc, with 16 points. Kasi Matthews also scored a season-high 16. Dia Fortenberry put up her third double-double of the season with 11 points and 13 rebounds.

Rhodes started a string of three games in three days with a come-from-behind win against Southwestern, defeating the Pirates 71-68. Rhodes' early turnovers, coupled with shooting struggles in the third quarter, allowed the Pirates to take an 18-point lead in the third frame. The Lynx made a comeback and trailed by just two points in the final minute before senior Allie Young blocked a Southwestern shot and pulled in the rebound. Rhodes called a timeout with 33 seconds to go and set up the Lynx to tie the game 68-68 after an Alli Mayeau layup. The Pirates took a timeout with 25 seconds left to advance the ball and look for a game-winning shot. Young had other ideas and stole the ball and went coast-to-coast to sink the winning bucket.