Storm Split Season Openers at Perkins Tip-Off Tournament


by Aaron Young

ARDEN HILLS, MINN. — Two different games were played over the weekend for the Simpson men’s basketball team. One in their liking, and one not so much.

The Storm (1-1) defeated tournament-host Bethel University 81-63 Friday night. Going into the championship game against University of Wisconsin-Stout the next night, however, was a different story, as Simpson found themselves down throughout the entire contest, losing 79-49, returning to Indianola as tournament runner-ups

Despite trailing at halftime 34-31 against Bethel, Simpson went on a scoring tear coming out the locker rooms, outscoring the Royals 50-29 in the second half. Leading the Storm in the season opener victory was sophomore guard Charles Swain. The Austin, Texas native scored 20 points in his first career start in the Simpson red and gold, going 8-for-12 from the field with five assists and two steals. Junior forward Drew Bentley finished with 18 points, and forwards senior Olu Rotibi and junior Austin Hennings both provided 10 points each.

The Storm made 54 percent of their shots, committing just 8 turnovers of their own and taking advantage of Bethel’s miscues 20 points off their turnovers.

And then the opposite happens.

UW-Stout took a 36-25 lead at halftime and were set on cruise control until the final buzzer. Chris Hortman had 21 points for the Blue Devils in their victory, leading all UW-Stout players. Hennings was the lead-man for the Storm as he recorded 14 points with five rebounds.

The team shot just 35 percent on the night, with 19 points coming off their 20 turnovers on the night.

Simpson travels to Grand View Tues., Nov. 20 in a non-conference battle. Last season when the two teams met, the Vikings defeated the Storm in a nail biter, 74-73. Tip-off is set at 7 p.m.