In a game with two aptly nicknamed teams, South Dakota State and Murray State traded runs on Saturday in the Ramada Worldwide Bracketbusters, but in the end, the Racers outran the Jackrabbits by a 73-62 score at the CFSB Center in Murray, Ky.
“There were some critical moments there where I probably should’ve called timeout. We have an experienced ball club, and usually when teams make runs, we’re able to hold them off and score, and usually I call timeout after we score, but we just couldn’t get a bucket to call a timeout,” head coach Scott Nagy said. “I think a lot of it was my fault, we played a short bench and we just kind of wore down and I should’ve used the timeouts better.”
The Jackrabbits, who fall to 21-9 on the season, went on the first run of the game, a 14-0 spurt that broke a 16-all tie and ended with the Jacks up 30-16 with 7 minutes and 10 second left to play in the first half.
The Racers, who improve to 20-7, responded with a run of their own a few minutes later with a 17-4 outburst that got them to within three points at 31-34 with just under two minutes to play in the half.
SDSU got a late 3-pointer from Chad White and a Marcus Heemstra putback just before the first half buzzer sounded to give the Jacks a 39-33 lead at halftime.
The Jacks scored the first eight points of the second half to push the lead back to 14 points, but the Racers used a 10-2 run to get within six at 43-49 and then used an 18-2 run later in the half to turn a 48-54 deficit into a 66-56 lead with 4:23 remaining in the game.
Nate Wolters snapped the run with just over four minutes left, but Murray State scored the next seven points to go up 73-58 with under two minutes to play to secure the win.
Wolters led a trio of Jackrabbits in double figures with 18 points, tying for game-high honors with five assists. White added 13 points and led the Jacks with seven rebounds, while Brayden Carlson finished with 12 points.
Isaiah Canaan led all scorers with 22 points, adding five assists, and Stacy Wilson scored 15 for the Racers to round out the double-digit scorers.
The Jacks look to get back on the winning track on Thursday, when they close the regular season at Omaha, where a win would lock up a share of The Summit League regular season title and the No. 1 seed at The Summit League Championships. The Jackrabbits and Mavericks tip at 7:05 p.m.