MACOMB, Ill. (SDSU) – South Dakota State was unable to hang on to a double-digit lead in the second half as Western Illinois pushed the game to overtime and eventually picked up an 81-73 victory on Saturday, Jan. 28, over the Jackrabbits in Western Hall.
The Jackrabbits used a stretch of 23 consecutive points to go up by 19 and led by as many as 22 in the first half. SDSU shot 51.6% from the field and went 6 of 12 from deep to take a 39-22 lead into the halftime break.
Western Illinois cut the deficit to single digits five minutes into the second half, but SDSU kept the Leathernecks at bay in the meantime. A Matt Mims 3-pointer with 8 minutes, 48 seconds remaining put the Jackrabbits up 60-42.
The Leathernecks pushed the game into single digits for good with just under six minutes of play in regulation and tied the score at 64 on an Alec Rosner 3-pointer at the 2:49 mark. SDSU’s Zeke Mayo hit a 3-pointer, Western Illinois’ Trenton Massner made consecutive free throw, then a dunk by the Jackrabbits’ William Kyle III made it a 69-66 contest with 1:46 left.
On Western Illinois’ next time down the court, the Leathernecks grabbed two offensive rebounds and eventually Massner connected on a 3-pointer to tie the game up at 69. Neither team would score again in regulation, as two attempts from deep by Mayo with the clock winding down saw contact, but didn’t receive a whistle and the two sides headed to overtime.
The Leathernecks were 4-for-5 from the field in the overtime period while the Jacks only made one field goal in the last five minutes of action.
South Dakota State dropped to 11-11 overall and 6-4 in Summit League action. The Leathernecks improved to 14-8 overall and 7-4 in conference play.
- Mayo scored a team-high 27 points for the Jackrabbits on 10 of 21 shooting. He also had six assists.
- Joining Mayo in double digits scoring were Matt Dentlinger (19) and Mims (11). Dentlinger had six rebounds tying him in the category with Kyle III.
- Western Illinois shot 60.7% from the field in the second half as the Leathernecks pushed the game to overtime. They finished with a 45-28 rebounding edge. Western Illinois was sent to the free throw line 19 times to SDSU’s seven, while the Leathernecks were called for 10 fouls to the Jackrabbits’ 16.
- Massner ended the contest with a game-high 30 points. He also had nine rebounds and eight assists. He was joined in double digits scoring by Rosner (16) and Quinlan Bennett (10).
South Dakota State closes out its three-game road trip on Monday. The Jackrabbits are slated to face Kansas City in the Swinney Center at 7 p.m.