SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — With a 20-7 all-time Summit League tournament record, the South Dakota State men will be seeking a sixth men’s championship when the Jackrabbits take the court at 5:45 p.m. Saturday.
Up first for top-seeded SDSU (15-6, 9-3 SL) will be No. 8 seed Omaha (5-19, 3-11 SL). It will be the first meeting between the Jackrabbits and Mavericks as the weekend series in January was canceled for league COVID-19 protocols.
Senior Douglas Wilson, last year’s conference player of the year, will make his Summit League Tournament debut after missing last year’s tournament with an injury. The 6’7″ forward led the Jackrabbits in scoring with 16.1 points per game. Sophomore Baylor Scheierman and junior Alex Arians average 14.7 and 10.7 points per game, respectively.
SDSU will be without second-leading scorer Noah Freidel, who averaged 16 points in 14 games played. Freidel announced his season is over because he has been struggling with depression and anxiety.
SDSU averages 79.9 points per game and allows 72.8 points per game, while Omaha averaged 67. 2 points per game and allowed 77.7 points per game.
Omaha ended the season on a high note, winning three out of the final four games, including a sweep of Denver to reach the tournament.
Three players — Marlon Ruffin, Ayo Akinwole and Matt Pile — average double figures in scoring for the Mavericks.
KELOLAND News will have coverage throughout the Summit League men’s and women’s basketball championships on the Summit League webpage. You can find stories, live blogs during games, livestreams of post-game news conferences and daily highlights from the action on Heritage Court.
The winner will face the winner of the No. 4 Oral Roberts/No. 5 North Dakota in the semifinals at 5:45 p.m. Monday.