WNIT Preview: University of South Dakota Coyotes at Northern Colorado Bears
The Coyote women are South Dakota's last Division I team standing this post season, as USD moves into the second round of the WNIT with a game at Northerrn Colorado Sunday night.
South Dakota won its tournament opener against Creighton Thursday night, beating the Bluejays 68-58. The Coyotes were led by their trio of seniors - Nicole Seekamp had a game-high 21 points, Raeshel Conteras had three early three-pointers as part of her 14-point night, and Lisa Loffler nailed a key three-pointer late to seal the win.
Defense and rebounding also gave USD a big edge, as Creighton shot just 2-of-13 from behind the three-point arc, and was outrebounded by 15. South Dakota head coach Amy Williams says one of the big keys to the victory was getting off to a 10-0 start:
The Summit League regular season champions now go on the road for a round two match-up against Northern Colorado of the Big Sky Conference. The Bears are 21-12 and finished tied for third in the league. They've won 11 of their last 12, including an opening round 53-48 win against Colorado State.
UNC is second in the Big Sky in defense and three-point shooting, and really excels in taking care of the basketball. The Bears are in the top 15 in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio. Inside, Stephanie Lee averages 17 points a game and is second in the Big Sky in blocked shots. Outside, D'Shara Strange averages 17 points a game, and is second in the Big Sky in steals, third in reboundiong. She has scored 20 or more points in four of her last six games. Coach Williams says this is a tough team to defend:
Winning on the road in tough environments is nothing new for the Coyotes this season. USD was 9-5 away from Vermillion, 5-3 during Summit League play. Coach Williams says playing on the road in the Summit is great preperation for her team to play anywhere with confidence:
Tipoff is 6:00 PM Sunday night in Greeley, Colorado. The winner plays the winner of the UCLA - San Diego game in round three.