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Jacks Beat Oakland in Women's Hoops



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BROOKINGS, S.D. — South Dakota State controlled the final seven minutes of each half, defeating visiting Oakland, 62-52, in Summit League women’s basketball action Thursday night at Frost Arena.

The Jackrabbits recorded the 800th victory in program history, improving to 8-6 overall and staying unbeaten in league play at 3-0. OU dropped to 5-7 overall, 1-2 in The Summit League.

SDSU got off to a quick start, scoring the first five points of the game and leading by five on three occasions in the opening five minutes before the Golden Grizzlies countered with an efficient display of offense. In one stretch, Oakland scored on eight consecutive trips down the floor to wrest the lead away.

Oakland led 24-15 after two Malika Glover free throws with 7 minutes, 18 seconds toplay in the first half, but the Golden Grizzlies went scoreless over the next six-plus minutes while the Jackrabbits began to hit their stride offensively. Ashley Eide scored six points as part of a 13-0 SDSU outburst that was punctuated by a three-pointer from the right wing by Jill Young. The Jackrabbits extended their lead to 32-27 on a runner by Steph Paluch with two seconds remaining in the first half.

In the second half, Oakland regained the lead at 34-33 on a free throw by Julia Vestin with 16:36 to play. However, the Golden Grizzly lead would last all of 16 seconds as Jennie Sunnarborg put SDSU out front for good with a basket in the paint.

Oakland stayed within a point on two more occasions before the Jackrabbits put together one final surge. Sunnarborg, who scored a game-high 21 points, put SDSU up seven, 49-42, with 7:25 to play and gave the Jackrabbits their largest lead of the night, 58-47, with a basket a tick under the three-minute mark.

Eide finished with 17 points, while Young scored 12 as she sank a pair of three-pointers in setting the Jackrabbit career three-point record with 251.

SDSU finished the night 21-of-52 from the field, 40.4 percent, including 5-of-16from three-point range. The Jackrabbits were effective at the free throw line, making 15-of-19 attempts for 78.9 percent.

Oakland was led by Bethany Watterworth’s 13 points. Sharise Calhoun added 11. The Golden Grizzlies made 22-of-51 attempts from the field, 43.1 percent, including 4-of-10 from long range. OU struggled at the line, however, converting only4-of-11 attempts, 36.4 percent.

The Jackrabbits dominated the boards, winning the rebounding battle by a 41-27 count. Leah Dietel, who made her first start of the season for SDSU, hauled in a season-high nine rebounds to lead all players. Zakiya Minifee led Oaklandwith six rebounds.

SDSU closes out its homestand Saturday afternoon by hosting IPFW. Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. at Frost Arena.

 NOTES: SDSU leads the series 8-3 … the Jackrabbits have won the last three meetings … SDSU holds an all-time record of 800-364 (.687 winning percentage) … the Jackrabbits recorded their 150th win over a Division I opponent,improving to 150-63 (.704 winning percentage) against D-I competition … SDSU improved to 141-22 (.865) at Frost Arena under Aaron Johnston and 86-13 (.867) at home versus D-I opponents … Dietel started in place of Katie Lingle, marking only the second different starting lineup used by the Jackrabbits this season … Dietel did not attempt a shot in 29 minutes of action, but contributed two blocked shots and two assists in addition to her nine rebounds … the previous Jackrabbit three-point record was held by Brenda Davis (250 three-pointers from 2001-04) and Kristin Rotert (250 three-pointers from 2008-11) … Sunnarborg reached the 20-point mark for the second consecutive game and 13th time in her career … Eide reached double figures for the fourth straight game … SDSU held a double-digit rebounding advantage for the sixth time this season — all Jackrabbit wins … the Jackrabbits are 8-3 when winning the rebounding battle and 6-1 when leading at the half … attendance was 1,776

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