Ogden, UT (SportsNetwork.com) - Aaron Anderson scored 19 points and pulled down six rebounds as North Dakota defeated the Portland State Vikings, 79-63, in the semifinals of the 39th annual Big Sky Conference Tournament at the Dee Events Center.
Also scoring in double figures for second-seeded North Dakota (17-15) were Troy Huff and Jaron Nash with 18 and 13 points, respectively, the former shooting just 3-of-14 from the floor, but 12-of-15 at the free-throw line.
Fifth-seeded Portland State (17-14) was paced by Gary Winston with 14 points, Kyle Richardson chipped in 13 and eight rebounds, followed by Andre Winston and DaShaun Wiggins with 12 points apiece in the setback.
UND scored the first points of the contest and never looked back, shooting an impressive 51.7 percent from the field, although just 1of-7 beyond the arc, en route to a 39-25 advantage at the break. The Vikings made a total of only seven field goals through the first 20 minutes.
The second half saw North Dakota convert only 10-of-31 (.323) from the field, but made up for it with 20-of-25 accuracy at the free-throw line in order to take the win.
Portland State was outscored in the paint, 46-18, and turned the ball over 18 times, leading to 21 points for North Dakota.
With the victory, North Dakota heads to the tournament title game on Saturday to face either Northern Colorado or Weber State for the right to represent the conference in the NCAA Tournament.