Summit League Preview: Coyote Women at North Dakota State, South Dakota State
It's a pair of road games for the University of South Dakota in week three of the Summit League women's basketball schedule, including their first match-up of the season with in-state rivals South Dakota State.
Before that game in Brookings Sunday, the Coyotes (11-5/2-1) travel to Frago to battle North Dakota State, Thursday night.
The Bison (5-15/0-4) are one of two winless teams in conference play so far (Fort Wayne), with the worst offense (53 points per game) and worst defense (opponents shoot 44 percent) in the Summit.
NDSU does have weapons on the offensive end of the floor. Marena Whittle is the second leading scorer in the league (18 points per game) while Taylor Thunstedt adds 14 a game. Whittle is also the second bet rebounder in the Summit League.
Tipoff is 7:00 PM in Fargo Thursday night.
The Coyotes move into Brookings Sunday for a rematch of last season's Summit League Tournament Championship game. The Jackrabbits beat the Summit League regular season champs that day and advanced to the NCAA Tournament.
SDSU and USD were the top two pre-season picks in the Summit League this year.
The Jackrabbits (14-3/4-0) are the lone unbeaten team in conference play, running their current win streak to five games with a 61-42 win at Fort Wayne. SDSU had three players in double figures - freshman Madison Guebert with 15 pints, with sophomores Ellie Thompson and Macy Miller adding 14 and 13. That's been the main story line for the Jacks this season - two-thirds of their scoring comes from underclassmen.
Sunday's match-up will pit the Summit League's top two teams in scoring and rebounding. Tipoff is 2:00 PM in Brookings.
The Coyotes dropped their last road game, 60-56 at Oral Roberts. USD shot just 29 percent from the floor in Tulsa, turned the ball over 18 times and were outscored in the paint by 22, but still had a chance to win the game late.
South Dakota bounced back with a 82-76 win at home over Omaha. Summit League pre-season player of the year Nicole Seekamp shook off a tough night against Oral Roberts with a season-high 26 points on 11-of-17 shooting against UNO. Seekamp also dished out six assists. Kelly Stewart (12 points), Margaret McCloud (11), and Kate Liveringhouse (11) also scored in double figures for the Coyotes.
I talked with USD head coach Amy Williams about last week's split and this week's games in Fargo and Brookings: