Steady South Dakota men dispatch Western Illinois, move to semis

Summit League Tournament

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A balanced Coyote attack propelled the second-seeded South Dakota men into the Summit League tournament semifinals with a 86-69 win over No. 7 seed Western Illinois. 

The Coyotes (14-10) won their first tournament game since 2018 and will face the winner of No. 3 North Dakota State/No. 6 Denver in the semifinals at 8:45 p.m. Monday. Hear from the Coyotes in the post-game news conference on the Summit League webpage. After the conference is over, it’ll be added to this story.

Keep up with action at Summit League Championships by visiting our special page.

Stanley Umude, Xavier Fuller and Tasos Kamateros led the way for South Dakota, combining for 61 points. Umude finished with 24 points, while Fuller had 20 points and Kamateros added 17 points and 6 rebounds.

USD head coach Todd Lee pointed out his team only committed nine turnovers. He said all five starting Coyotes did a good job.

“When Xavier is shooting the ball, he’s tough to guard,” Lee said. “Everybody did a good job, including the guys off the bench. It’s good to have a balanced attack.”

The Coyotes shot 55% from the field (29-for-52). There were plenty of fouls, with Western Illinois racking up 24 personal fouls and USD had 19. 

Umude said he was trying to keep the pressure on the Leatherneck defense.

In the late contest of Day 1, there was no shortage of energy on the court to start as the Coyotes answered the Leatherneck’s first bucket of the game with a 14-point run to lead 14-3. Western Illinois battled back, cutting the lead down to four at 25-21. From there, Coyotes finished the opening half strong to take a 43-30 lead into half. 

Western Illinois finished the season 7-15. Colton Sandage led the Leathernecks with 16 points.

USD improved to 5-8 in the Summit League tournament all-time. It was the first tournament win for Lee.

KELOLAND News will have coverage throughout the Summit League men’s and women’s basketball championships on the Summit League webpage full of stories, live blogs during games, livestreams of post-game news conferences and daily highlights from the action on Heritage Court.

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