Max Jacobsen scored a career-high 22 points to lead all five starters in double figures, and Northern Arizona held off Montana State 87-80 on Monday night in the Big Sky Conference opener for both teams.
Jacobsen added nine rebounds and was 9 of 12 from the floor, part of a 56 percent effort for the Lumberjacks (4-5), who snapped a 15-game conference losing streak. DeWayne Russell had 16 points, Gaellan Bewernick scored 13, Stallon Saldivar had 12 and Gabe Rogers chipped in 11.
Antonio Biglow scored 15 points and Flavien Davis added 14 for the Bobcats (2-6), who whittled NAU's 20-point second-half lead to 81-76 on Paul Egwuonwu's layup with 43 seconds left. But the Lumberjacks made all six of their free throws in the final minute to seal the win.
NAU's home loss to MSU last season snapped a 10-game home winning streak against the Bobcats.