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North Dakota State (14-5) at South Dakota State (10-9)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, January 25, 5 p.m. (ET)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Frost Arena (8,500) -- Brookings, South Dakota. Television: Fox College Sports, Midco Sports Network. Home Record: North Dakota State 7-1, South Dakota State 7-2 Away Record: North Dakota State 6-4, South Dakota State 3-6. Neutral Record: North Dakota State 1-0, South Dakota State 0-1. Conference Record: North Dakota State 3-1, South Dakota State 2-2. Series Record: North Dakota State leads, 109-98.
GAME NOTES: The North Dakota State Bison put a three-game winning streak on the line as they travel to face the South Dakota State Jackrabbits in Summit League action at Frost Arena.
Since a Summit League loss to IUPU-Fort Wayne in the team's conference opener this season, North Dakota State has won three in a row to improve to 3-1 in league play - a half-game back of South Dakota for the conference lead. The Bison are coming off a 65-52 win over Western Illinois Leathernecks Saturday.
South Dakota State has lost two of its last three games following a five-game winning streak. The Jackrabbits fell to 2-2 in Summit League play after an 80-71 loss to Nebraska Omaha Saturday.
North Dakota State has the all-time series lead in the longstanding rivalry with its neighbor to the south, 109-98. The two teams split the season series last year with wins on each of their home courts. They'll meet again this season in Fargo on Feb. 22.
North Dakota State went into the half all knotted up with Western Illinois in the team's last outing, 30-30. But a 35-22 explosion in the second half helped the Bison down the Leathernecks in Summit League action. Marshall Bjorklund scored 15 points to lead the Bison, while Taylor Braun netted 14 and TrayVonn Wright had 12. Braun pulled down eight rebounds to lead the team, and dished out six assists. North Dakota State shot 44.4 percent from the field.
Braun paces the Bison this season with 18.3 ppg on 49 percent shooting from the floor. He also tops the team in rebounding with a 5 rpg average and assists with 71 this season. Bjorklund is second on the Bison with 14.8 ppg on an impressive 65.9 percent shooting. North Dakota State has netted 79.5 ppg in the team's 19 games played this season, and only given up 68.6 ppg to its opposition.
South Dakota State lost its first home conference game since the 2011 season Saturday with the defeat at the hands of Nebraska Omaha. The Jackrabbits got a solid contribution from Brayden Carlson, but struggled from 3-point distance, going 3-of-19 in the contest. Carlson netted a career-high 26 points in the game, and went a perfect 12-of-12 from the free-throw line. Cody Larson added 14 points and Jordan Dykstra chipped in 12 points with nine rebounds. The Jackrabbits shot 40 percent in the game.
Dykstra leads the team in scoring this season with 16.6 ppg on 44.7 percent shooting from the floor. He also tops the squad in rebounding at 8 rpg, and has 33 assists on the year. Carlson is second on the roster with 15.5 ppg, and Larson is third with 13.6 ppg. Carlson leads the Jackrabbits with 52 assists. As a team, South Dakota State scores 72.9 ppg.
The Jackrabbits are 7-2 at home this season, but will face a Bison team scoring points at a blistering pace. North Dakota State's defense will have a tough time with some standout Jackrabbits, but the Bison should be up to the challenge.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: North Dakota State 78, South Dakota State 71
01/25 10:30:17 ET