Coyotes rally past Jacks for perfect Summit season

Coyotes rally past Jacks for perfect Summit season

VERMILLION, S.D.—The historical season continued tonight as the Coyotes rallied from an 11-point deficit to top South Dakota State 80-75 in front of 4,018 fans inside the Sanford Coyote Sports Center on Wednesday.

South Dakota (24-5, 14-0 Summit) is the first undefeated Summit League regular season champion since 1994. The Coyotes also earn their third regular season title in the last four years.

The win also extends South Dakota’s winning streak to 18 games, which ties the Summit League record for consecutive victories.

South Dakota State (22-6, 11-2 Summit) had topped league opponents by an average of 35 points in the six games since losing a 67-61 decision to USD in Brookings back on Jan. 25. The Coyotes are the only team to defeat the Jackrabbits in league play this season.

Senior guard Jasmine Trimboli, the reigning Summit League Player of the Week, led the Coyotes in scoring for the second-straight game with 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting. Trimboli grabbed six rebounds, swiped five steals and dished out a pair of assists.

Junior guard Jaycee Bradley and sophomore guard Ciara Duffy added 15 and 11 points, respectively.

Macy Miller’s game-high 23 points led the Jackrabbits on 7-of-11 shooting. SDSU guard Madison Guebert added 19 points while forward Ellie Thompson had 13.

South Dakota held a 41-39 advantage at the half after Duffy drained a three-pointer on the final possession. Trimboli scored 14 of her 18 points in the first two quarters to lead the Coyotes offensively at the break.

The Jackrabbits came out firing at the beginning of the third quarter, using a 20-7 run to build up to its largest lead of the game at 59-48. Plitzuweit called a timeout and USD responded with a 10-4 run of its own to finish off the corner.

South Dakota State would hold onto its lead until the final 38 seconds of the game. The Coyotes climbed back to two points, 69-67, on a 3-pointer by sophomore guard Madison McKeever with 4:51 remaining. Miller answered with a three for the Jacks, but back-to-back layups by Trimboli closed the Jackrabbit lead to 72-71 with 1:13 to play.

The Jackrabbits had shot 61.4 percent from the floor through the first three quarters of the game, an average that dropped drastically following a 3-of-16 shooting effort in the fourth quarter.

A steal by freshman guard Chloe Lamb gave the Coyotes possession with 38 seconds to play. She would go to the free-throw line and make both to take the Coyotes’ first lead since the beginning of the second quarter.

After McKeever grabbed a defensive board, she knocked down both free throws to put the Coyotes up by three. Between final-minute timeouts, advancing the ball and strategic fouling the teams traded free throws for the remaining 25 seconds. The Coyotes ultimately came out on top 80-75.

South Dakota consistently shot above 45 percent through all four quarters and finished at 48.1 percent (25-of-52) from the floor. The Coyotes also scored 18 points-off 13 Jackrabbit turnovers, including 12 in the second half.

Junior guard Allison Arens added nine points and six rebounds for the Coyotes while McKeever tallied eight points, with six coming in the second half. Sophomore guard Taylor Frederick scored six points in 11 minutes on the court.

The Coyotes have earned the top seed for the upcoming Summit League Tournament. South Dakota will play the first game at noon Saturday, March 3, with the opponent still to be determined.

Categories: College Sports, Colleges – South Dakota, Colleges – South Dakota State, Sports, Sports Top Story

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