Daum & Howell Help Rabbits Overcome Oral Roberts

State Rallies From 15 Down To Win 74-67

It was a tale of two halves for the South Dakota State men’s basketball team in a 74-67 double-digit comeback win over Oral Roberts Saturday afternoon at Frost Arena.

Playing in front of 3,917 fans for the 2017 Lamb Bonanza, the Jackrabbits shook off a rocky start and outscored the Golden Eagles by 22 over the final 13 minutes to win their third straight contest.

SDSU (12-14, 5-6 Summit League) now sits alone in sixth place of the conference standings. The Jacks finished 37.9 percent from the field, but hit 50 percent of their second half field goals and were 23 of 32 at the line for the night.

Additionally, State scored 22 points off of ORU’s 13 turnovers while committing just eight turnovers of their own.

Oral Roberts (7-18, 3-8 Summit League) shot 45 percent from the field but finished only 8 of 15 at the free throw line.

Mike Daum and Chris Howell combined for 58 of SDSU’s points as both Jacks recorded double-doubles. Daum led the team with 38 points and 17 rebounds with a 7 of 8 effort at the line. Howell had 20 points and 12 rebounds and was 14 of 19 at the charity stripe.

Michael Orris had six assists for the Jacks.

Neither team fired out of the gates, with a combined 18 points through the opening 10 minutes. The Jacks held ORU scoreless until 15:15 of the first, but faced struggles of their own and led by just five, 7-2, at the first media break.

Inside 13 minutes to play in the first, State put a lockdown on Oral Roberts’ scoring for another four minutes, but only stretched its lead to eight, 14-6, after Daum’s layup at 9:27 gave the big man 11 points for the day.

ORU picked things up, however, outscoring SDSU by 18 over the final eight minutes of the half to send the Jacks to the locker room, down 33-23.

Facing a 15-point deficit with 13 minutes to go in the game, Howell sparked the Jackrabbits on an 8-0 run over the next two minutes to bring the Golden’s Eagles’ lead to seven, 52-45. Inside nine to play SDSU made it a six-point game (58-52) after consecutive 3s from Skyler Flatten and Daum.

Down six (61-55) with under six minutes remaining, a run of seven unanswered put SDSU in the lead for the first time in over 20 minutes of game action. ORU recovered briefly, but SDSU regained the lead for good on a pair of Daum free throws with 3:44 to go, and Howell sealed the win with eight free throws in the final 3:01.

Head Coach T.J. Otzelberger
On the first half struggles …

“I thought our energy in the first half wasn’t quite where it needed to be. We talk all the time about winning the rebounding battle and the energy battle. It felt like we were a little bit stagnant that first half. The way they defended us off some shooters and clogging the lane kind of ruined our offensive flow. In the second half I thought defensively us getting some stops and pushing up the floor really gave them some issues and ended up being really good for us.”

On team overcoming adversity …
“I learned that one through 14, all these guys are ready to go. You have two players that are out that have consistent starters with Ian (Theisen) and A.J. (Hess) and then you have Reed (Tellinghuisen) and Lane (Severyn) with four fouls apiece early in the second half and you’ve got to have other guys step up. Tevin King comes in and gives you great energy and Skyler (Flatten) makes a big shot and has some offensive rebounds. I can’t say enough about Mike Daum and Chris Howell who had phenomenal nights.”

On Howell’s play …
“He had 20 points tonight, but had 19 free throws and was attacking the paint. He was phenomenal tonight. I thought that on the glass, getting 12 rebounds, was great. He’s still learning but he’s coming along at a great pace and getting better every game and we’re really excited about him.”

On team’s approach in the final month …
“It’s just one game at a time. We’ve got to keep getting better, which is what we’ve been saying all year. We started the season 1-6 and then we came back. We started conference 1-5 and now we’ve bounced back. So for us, it’s really just about the day that’s in front of us and the next game we have and being ready to go and these guys have done a great job at doing that.”

Game Notes

  • Daum entered the game with 1,098 career points, tied for 29th on SDSU’s scoring list. His 38 points moved him past Guy Mackner and Randy Suarez (1,114) and Brayden Carlson (1,132) into 26th all-time.
  • Chris Howell has now scored in double figures in three straight games and recorded his first double-double in a Jackrabbit uniform.
  • Daum posted his eighth 30-point game of the season.
  • Daum now has 616 points for the season, setting a new school record for points by a sophomore. The previous record was set in 2010-11 when Nate Wolters scored 604.
  • The last time SDSU had two players score 20 or more in a game was Dec. 3, 2016 against UMKC.
  • SDSU had two players record double-doubles for the first time since Nov. 11, 2014 when Cody Larson and Zach Horstman did it.

What’s Next
South Dakota State enters round two of rivalry week next Wednesday, Feb. 8 at North Dakota State before traveling to South Dakota on Saturday, Feb. 11.

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