Nate Wolters posted his third double-double in the last four games with 21 points and 10 rebounds, which ties a career-high, and Chad White scored 19 points and tied a career-high with five three-pointers in South Dakota State’s 81-72 win over Southwest Minnesota State on Wednesday at Frost Arena.
Winners of 19 in a row at home, the Jackrabbits improve to 4-2 on the season, while the visiting Mustangs fall to 2-3.
“It’s good when you can not play sharp and still win the basketball game, and our kids know that there are still lessons to learn from it, but still being able to win the game is a plus for us,” head coach Scott Nagy said. “We didn’t shoot it well, we didn’t defend well and I think you have to give Southwest Minnesota State credit, they came in prepared and weren’t scared, they played well. There’s a reason they’re one of the best teams in the country in Division II, Brad (Bigler) is a great coach and his had his kids ready.”
The Mustangs fell behind 12-6 early, but never went away, and came back to take a 31-30 lead with just under five minuets to play in the first half.
SDSU quickly regained the lead, but only led by two points, when Wolters hit a three-pointer at the first half buzzer to give the Jacks a 38-33 lead at halftime.
SMSU tied the game at 40-all early in the second half, but the Jackrabbits responded with a 28-6 run that ended with the Jacks leading 68-46 with 8:33 left to play.
The visitors would cut the lead to as few as eight points, but did so with just 27 seconds left, and would get no closer.
The Jackrabbits look to make it 20 in a row at home next Wednesday, when they host North Dakota in Frost Arena at 8:30 p.m., following the SDSU women’s basketball game against Marquette at 6 p.m.