Summit League Preview: South Dakota Women at NDSU, Host IUPUI
One week into the 2017 Summit League schedule, the South Dakota women's basketball team owns the longest current win streak in the conference and is one of only two teams to win its' first two league games.
The Coyotes put that seven game streak on the line when the go on the road for the first time in the Summit this season - for a Wednesday game at North Dakota State.
The Bison (3-13/1-1) are led by junior guard Taylor Thunstedt, who tied for third in the league in scoring, after averaging 22 points in a loss to South Dakota State and a win over Denver.
As a team, NDSU is tops in most of the offensive categories so far in the Summit, second in rebounding.
Freshman guard Sarah Jacobson and senior forward Brianna Jones are each averaging better than seven boards a game in conference action.
The Bison gave South Dakota State all they could handle last week, leading by as many as nine, before falling 69-66 at home. NDSU bounced back with a six-point win at Denver, which included a plus-15 performance on the glass.
Tipoff is 7:00 PM Wednesday in Fargo.
IUPUI comes to Vermillion Saturday to battle South Dakota.
The Jaguars (11-3/1-0), always one of the top defensive and rebounding teams in the Summit, lead in fewest points allowed and rebounding, and are second in blocked shots.
They got double-doubles from Mikale Rogers (17 points/12 rebounds) and Jenna Gunn (11/10) in a 14-point win against Western Illinois last week. Sydney Hall (22 points) and Danielle Lawrence (16) also scored in double figures for IUPUI, who started strong against the Leathernecks, scoring 26 points in the first quarter on 59 percent shooting, including 5-of-6 from three in the first ten minutes.
Hall finished the game with seven three's.
Tipoff 1:00 PM Saturday in Vermillion.
Nobody had a better week last week than South Dakota Allison Arens. The sophomore scored 52 points and grabbed 16 rebounds, while going 27-of-30 from the free throw line in wins over Denver and South Dakota State, earning her not only Summit League Player of the Week honors, but she was also named espnW’s National Player of the Week, the first Mid-Major athlete to pick up the national award this season.
Arens' first half double-double (10 points/190 rebounds) against Denver helped erase an early Pioneer lead. She finished with 28 points and 11 boards. Her sister, Bridget, was the only other Coyote in double figures (12 points), as USD won 70-64.
Against South Dakota State, South Dakota fell behind by as many as 13 in the first half, after shooting less than 29 percent over the first 20 minutes.
The Coyotes found their shooting touch in the third, hitting at better than 57 percent, while limiting the Jacks to just nine points on 21 percent shooting.
South Dakota pushed the lead to six in the fourth, but South Dakota State pulled even with back-to-back three pointers. The game was tight the rest of the way, with USD holding a three-point edge in the final seconds, thanks to eight straight points from Allison Arens.
The Jackrabbits had two opportunities in the final five seconds to tie it, but both shots missed, and the Coyotes had a 65-62 win.
I talked with Coach Plitzuweit about the wins and this week's games with North Dakota State and IUPUI: