BROOKINGS, S.D. (SDSU) – South Dakota State women’s basketball fell to No. 20/15 South Dakota 77-67 Saturday afternoon on Senior Day at Frost Arena.
The Jackrabbits fell to 20-9 overall and 12-3 in Summit League play, while South Dakota improved to 26-2 overall and 15-0 in league play clinching the Summit League regular season title.
“Congratulations to them. They (South Dakota) played well,” said head coach Aaron Johnston. “They made shots and that second half, they made every shot they needed to make. I thought we played certainly hard enough and at times, well enough. Just a little bit loose on offense and defense. There’s just a few possessions here and there I wish we could go back and have different, but they just played really solid throughout. They played like a very experienced team out there.”
Tagyn Larson led the Jacks and was just shy of a double-double with 18 points and nine rebounds while dishing four assists. Tori Nelson had 12 points, four rebounds and three assists. Paiton Burckhard added 11 points and pulled down five boards. Rylie Cascio Jensen had nine points and four assists, while Tylee Irwin had a team-best five assists.
The Jacks shot 48.1 percent from the field and outrebounded the Coyotes 29-22, including 12 offensive boards. SDSU outscored USD in the paint 36-24.
The Jacks and Coyotes went back and forth in the opening frame with no team holding more than a five-point lead. Stapleton’s jumper at 3:22 ended a run of five unanswered South Dakota points. A Stapleton layup to beat the buzzer made it 17-14 Coyotes at the end of the first quarter.
USD extended its lead to eight following a 5-0 run to start the second quarter, but back-to-back Nelson baskets brought the Jacks back within five with 5:44 remaining in the half. Each team traded buckets to end the half with the Jacks trailing 35-26 heading into the locker room.
Coming out of the break, four-straight free throws by the Jacks made it a two-possession game (37-32). State outscored USD 10-6 to close out the quarter capped by a Burckhard buzzer-beating shot for the Jacks to cut the deficit to 52-45.
“The second quarter really hurt us,” said Johnston. “I thought we got down and we were kind of playing catch up the rest of the way, but to their credit, like I said, when we made some runs and made things happen, they seem they hit a big shot that kept themselves in momentum and that was really big in that second half.”
The final quarter opened with an 8-2 USD run. After the Coyotes took a game-high 15-point lead at 5:40, Larson and Lindsey Theuninck layups started an 11-3 Jackrabbit run, bringing the Jacks back within single digits. USD went a perfect 6-of-6 at the free throw line in the final 31 seconds to secure the win.
- South Dakota State is 57-32 all-time against South Dakota.
- State has outrebounded its opponents on 20 occaisions this season.
- The Jackrabbits shot 84.6 percent from the charity stripe, compared to the Coyotes at 77.8 percent.
- Tagyn Larson has scored in double figures 15 times this season.
- Attendance for the game was 3,672.
South Dakota State concludes the regular season on the road against North Dakota State Thursday. Tipoff is set for 5 p.m.