South Dakota (12-16) at South Dakota State (17-11)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, March 1, 5 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Frost Arena (6,500) -- Brookings, South Dakota. Television: MidcoSN, FCS. Home Record: South Dakota 10-3, South Dakota State 10-3. Away Record: South Dakota 2-12, South Dakota State 7-7. Neutral Record: South Dakota 0-1, South Dakota State 0-1. Conference Record: South Dakota 6-7, South Dakota State 9-4. Series Record: South Dakota State leads, 118-89-1.
GAME NOTES: Just one games remains on the regular season schedule for Summit League members, and the South Dakota State Jackrabbits, who are tied for second in the conference standings, will try to maintain their status in the league as they host the South Dakota Coyotes in a conference battle at Frost Arena.
South Dakota had a three-game win streak snapped on Thursday night versus the top team in the Summit League in North Dakota State, 82-54. The Coyotes fell below the .500 mark in the conference at 6-7 with the loss.
South Dakota State is on fire in the conference, having won seven of the team's last eight games, including a 78-69 victory over Denver on Thursday. The Jackrabbits, at 9-4 in conference play this season, are tied with IPFW for second, two games behind leader North Dakota State.
In this long-standing intrastate rivalry, South Dakota State leads the all- time series over South Dakota, 118-89-1. The Jackrabbits came away with the head-to-head win earlier this season back on Feb. 1, 70-68.
North Dakota State rocketed out to a 24-3 lead over South Dakota on Thursday and never trailed as the Bison coasted past the Coyotes in league play. Karim Rowson was the only South Dakota player to net a point total in the double digits, scoring 10 points and hitting a perfect 6-of-6 from the free-throw line. Tyler Flack chipped in nine points and five rebounds, and the Coyotes as a unit shot just 31.3 percent from the floor in the loss.
Big man Trevor Gruis leads the South Dakota team in scoring this season with a narrow edge over Brandon Bos. Gruis nets 11.7 ppg for the Coyotes, while Bos comes in right behind at 11.5 ppg. Gruis also tops the squad in rebounding with a healthy 6 rpg. Flack averages 4.8 rpg and has registered a team-high 41 blocked shots this year. Trey Norris leads the team with 113 assists and 35 steals on the season.
Denver, like South Dakota State, was hot in Summit League play entering the head-to-head matchup with the Jackrabbits. SDSU led the Pioneers at the half, 29-27, but created some more cushion for the lead in the second half en route to the nine-point Jackrabbits victory. Brayden Carlson netted 22 points to pace South Dakota State with four assists and three steals. Jordan Dykstra contributed 19 points and eight rebounds, while Cody Larson added 16 points and six boards of his own. Chad White chipped in 11 points, and Jake Bittle narrowly missed a double-double with eight points and 11 rebounds.
The Jackrabbits haven't discovered any shortage of scoring this season. Dykstra tops the team with 16.3 ppg and a registers a team-best 7.6 rpg. Carlson checks in with 15.1 ppg, and Larson adds 13.4 ppg. Carlson is the team's leading assist man, dishing out 80 helpers on the year. Larson tops the squad with 31 blocked shots, and Bittle has recorded a team-best 37 steals on the season.
The Coyotes have had a difficult time playing on the road this year, having lost 12 of their 14 away contests. The Jackrabbits will have an answer for Gruis and the rest of the South Dakota team defensively, and should have no trouble putting up points at Frost Arena.
Sports network Predicted Outcome: South Dakota State 76, South Dakota 68
03/01 11:25:01 ET