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WBK: SDSU Stays Alive To Host Gophers

March 23, 2014, 7:49 PM

WBK: SDSU Stays Alive To Host Gophers

The South Dakota State women’s basketball team (24-9) used a 28-0 run over 11 minutes to defeat Creighton (20-14), 62-51, in the second round of the Women’s NIT Sunday in front of 2,152 fans in Frost Arena.

The Jackrabbits trailed 25-13 after Creighton’s Lauren Works sank a three-point field goal with 7:07 to play in the first half. SDSU’s Megan Waytashek (Lino Lakes, Minn.) got the Jackrabbits started by sinking two foul shots with 6:32 remaining.  Six different Jackrabbits scored as SDSU closed the half with a 16-0 run to take a 29-25 lead. The SDSU defense forced Creighton to miss its last nine shots of the half.

The Jackrabbits opened the second half with a 12-0 run to make it 41-25. Creighton broke the streak by scoring with 15:38 left.

Senior guard Steph Paluch (Pierre) scored 19 points to lead the Jackrabbits. Waytashek added 11 points while junior guard Gabby Boever (Worthington, Minn.) added 10 points and a game-high four steals.

Creighton, a member of the BIG EAST Conference, was led by Sarah Nelson’s 15 points and nine rebounds.

The Jackrabbits have now won 16 games this season in Frost Arena and 19 overall.

After winning its rematch with Creighton Sunday, the South Dakota State women’s basketball team will host the University of Minnesota in a Women’s NIT Sweet Sixteen game Thursday at 7 p.m. in the friendly confines of Frost Arena.

The Jackrabbits defeated Creighton, 62-51, to extend its home win streak to 16 this season and 19 games overall. The Golden Gophers advanced to the WNIT third round with a 77-70 victory over SMU Sunday night in Minneapolis.

Minnesota is 3-2 in the WNIT overall and this season marks the second-straight Women’s NIT appearance for the Golden Gophers. They also appeared in the then-National Women’s Invitation Tournament in 1978 and 1979.

The Golden Gophers finished the regular season 20-12 overall and 8-8 in the Big Ten Conference. The Gophers lost to Nebraska, 80-67, in the Big Ten Tournament March 7.

The Jackrabbits and the Gophers have had four common opponents on the season, Horizon League member Green Bay, Missouri Valley member Northern Iowa, Big East member Creighton, and Big Ten member Penn State. SDSU went 3-1 vs. the group while Minnesota finished 2-2.

Thursday’s game vs. Minnesota will mark the sixth meeting between the Jackrabbits and the Golden Gophers. South Dakota State is 4-1 vs. Minnesota, winning the last three games. The last time Minnesota and SDSU meet was Dec. 9, 2008, in Minneapolis and the Jacks came home with a 65-55 win.

Season ticket holders have until noon Tuesday to purchase the tickets they had during the regular season.  General public can purchase general admission tickets starting immediately online at Remaining reserved tickets will go on sale at 1 p.m. Tuesday. Reserved tickets are $20, and general admission tickets are $20 for adults and $7 for youths (K-12).

The SDSU Athletic Department is providing the first 500 student tickets free of charge. Student tickets will be $5 per ticket after the allotment is claimed.

Courtesy: Michele Schmidt, SDSU

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