Sports briefs

MSU adds Billings transfer

The Minot State University men’s basketball program announced the addition of Montana State-Billings transfer Sam Johnson on Monday.

Johnson will join the Beavers this fall as a senior. The Las Vegas native averaged 10 points and 4.3 rebounds in 18 minutes per game in one season with Billings.

“We are excited to add Sam to our program,” MSU coach Matt Murken said in a press release. “He is a player that has had success at the Division II level and will provide us experience and athleticism in the front court. He is a proven competitor who is accustomed to playing winning basketball.”

The 6-foot-6 forward played his first two collegiate seasons at Casper College (Wyo.). Johnson was featured on ESPN’s SportsCenter and SportsNation programs last season. He threw the ball off the backboard to himself for a dunk in a 102-90 win over Rocky Mountain College. He had a team-high 23 points in the game.

At Legacy High School in Las Vegas, Johnson led the team in points, rebounds and blocks.

– Daily News Staff

WSC hockey adds forwards

The Williston State College hockey team announced the signings of two forwards from the Northern Ontario Junior Hockey League on Monday.

Trevor Hunt and Devan Turcotte played the past season with league champion North Bay Trappers. Hunt, 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds, was named the NOJHL playoffs MVP.

Hunt had 22 goals, 26 assists and 56 penalty minutes in 43 games. Turcotte had five goals, one assist and five penalty minutes in 15 games.

Turcotte, 6-foot and 188 pounds, is recovering from shoulder surgery.

“We feel Devan deserves a fresh start and will make an impact.” WSC coach Seamus Gregory said in a press release. “We traveled up to see both young men in the playoffs and were quite impressed. Hunt is a major signing at this point in our program’s history, we feel the sky could be the limit for him. He can play Division III college hockey anywhere in the country right now.”

The Tetons are the NJCAA defending national champions.

– Daily News Staff

Hockey team honored for academics

The Dakota College at Bottineau hockey team was named an NJCAA Academic Team of the Year with its 3.2 collective GPA.

A minimum 3.0 is required for consideration.

“We needed this as a momentum builder towards next year,” coach Travis Rybchinski said in a press release. “I am really happy about receiving this award as many players worked hard to achieve this award. We emphasize the student part of the student-athlete. The majority of our student-athletes were honor roll students throughout the year and put many hours in at the study table.”

– Daily News Staff

NCAA-high six UND players drafted by NHL teams

GRAND FORKS (AP) – Six recruits who plan to play hockey for the University of North Dakota were selected in the NHL draft, the most of any NCAA program in the nation, the school said.

Forwards Adam Tambellini, Luke Johnson and Wade Murphy and defensemen Keaton Thompson, Tucker Poolman and Gage Ausmus all were chosen in Sunday’s draft.

Thompson is a Devils Lake native and spent the previous two seasons with the United States National Team Development Program. Thompson had four goals and 16 assists in 67 games last season and helped Team USA to a silver medal at the Under-18 World Championship.

In the third round of the draft, Tambellini went to the New York Rangers and Thompson to the Anaheim Ducks. In the fifth round, Poolman went to the Winnipeg Jets, Johnson to the Chicago Blackhawks and Ausmus to the San Jose Sharks. Murphy went to the Nashville Predators in the seventh round.

It marked the 13th time in school history that UND had at least six players taken in a single draft, and the fifth time under head coach Dave Hakstol.

Tambellini, Johnson, Murphy, Thompson and Ausmus all will join North Dakota for the upcoming season, while Poolman will join the program either this season or next.

Johnson played for Grand Forks Central as a freshman and sophomore and helped the Knights to a state title in his second season. Poolman is an East Grand Forks, Minn., native.

Thompson and Johnson join 2012 sixth-round selection Paul LaDue (Grand Forks) as North Dakota natives and NHL draftees on the UND roster.

– Daily News Staff contributed to this report

Bison lead FCS with five preseason All-Americans

The North Dakota State University football team leads the country with five selections to The Sports Network FCS Preseason All-America team, which was announced Monday.

Offensive lineman Billy Turner, cornerback Marcus Williams and linebacker Grant Olson, all seniors, give the Bison a national-best three first-team selections. Turner and Williams are on the first team for the second time in their careers.

Punt returner Ryan Smith and defensive tackle Leevon Perry, also seniors, made the second and third teams, respectively.

NDSU’s five selections helped the Missouri Valley Conference lead the country with nine first-team picks and 17 overall. The Big Sky and Southern conferences had 15 selections each.

Wide receiver Greg Hardin was the University of North Dakota’s lone selection and is a member of the second team. Hardin is the first player to earn the honor for UND at the Division I level.

– Daily News Staff