Sophomore guard Ryan Lindstrom sank six 3-point baskets and scored a game-high 24 points to lead No. 13-ranked St. Thomas to Friday night's 80-66 win over UW-La Crosse in NCAA men's basketball playoff first-round action in Lincoln, Neb.
The Tommies (23-4), who had only seven turnovers, broke to a 12-point halftime lead, as they shot 56 percent from the floor and made eight treys in the first 20 minutes. They kept the pressure on with a 6-0 run to start the second half.
Connor Bair scored 16 points, Michael Hannon scored 11, and freshman guard Anders Nelson chipped in 11 assists and eight rebounds for St. Thomas. The Purple shot 54 percent from the floor, sank 12 treys, and had an 18-10 edge in bench points.
The Tommies play here Saturday night against Nebraska Wesleyan, a 101-75 winner over Eureka. The host Prairie Wolves (27-1) are the defending Division III champion and currently ranked No. 1.