Neither team could pull away from each other in a hotly contested first half. Both teams shot north of 50% from the field during the half. La Salle made their three-point attempts while the Gophers did not. The Explorers were 4-8 from behind the arc while Minnesota was 0-5.
La Salle was led by 11 points from Ramon Galloway. A few of Galloway's baskets came on highlight dunks which excited the home crowd. Earl Pettis and Jerrell Wright chipped in 7 points apiece for the Explorers. Wright appeared to tweak his knee while fouling a Minnesota player on a three point attempt late in the half. Minnesota was led by 17 points by Rodney Williams. Williams had a few highlight dunks as well.