MACOMB, Ill. - Ashley Eide became the 32nd member of the Jackrabbit 1,000-Point Club, scoring 12 points to help lead South Dakota State to a 61-52 victory Saturday afternoon at Western Illinois in Summit League women's basketball action.
The league-leading Jackrabbits improved to 20-7 overall and 12-2 in The Summit League. Western Illinois dropped to 11-14 overall, 4-8 in league play.
After the two teams traded baskets in the early going, the Jackrabbits took the lead for good with a 15-0 run over a five-minute span of the first half. Gabrielle Boever started the outburst with a three-pointer that gave SDSU an 8-6 lead and reserve forward Rachel Walters connected on a pair of treys.
WIU pulled to within 24-15 later in the first half, but Walters hit her third three-pointer of the half and Tara Heiser added three free throws to push the margin to 34-18 at halftime.
The Jackrabbits upped their lead to 20 points early in the second half on an Eide basket. A senior guard from Sioux Falls, Eide made a free throw at the 15:32 mark of the second half for her 1,000th career point.
SDSU maintained a comfortable lead until hitting a scoring drought that lasted more than six minutes with a point and nearly eight minutes without a field goal before Eide stemmed the tide with a traditional three-point play. The Jackrabbits' inability to score allowed Western Illinois to trim the deficit to single digits with a little more than two minutes to play.
The Jackrabbits made 7-of-8 free throw attempts in the final 91 seconds to seal the victory. Boever was 4-for-4 at the strip down the stretch to finish with a team-high 13 points. Eide was the only other Jackrabbit in double figures with a dozen.
For the game, SDSU shot 18-of-54 from the field, 33 percent, including 5-of-14 from three-point range. The Jackrabbits held a big advantage at the free throw line, making 20-of-29 attempts for 69 percent, while Western Illinois 9-of-13, 75 percent.
The Fighting Leathernecks ended the afternoon 19-of-56 from the field, 41.4 percent, including 5-of-23 from behind the arc. Saule Kontautaite led all players with 16 points. Ashley Luke and Jackie Rieger chipped in with 11 and 10 points respectively.
SDSU held a 46-32 rebounding advantage, led by Leah Dietel's game-high eight boards.
The Jackrabbits close out the home season Thursday night by hosting Omaha. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at Frost Arena. The senior class of Dietel, Eide and Katie Lingle will be honored prior to the game.
NOTES: SDSU leads the all-time series, 12-1, which dates back to the 2007-08 season ... the Jackrabbits have won the last 12 meetings ... the Jackrabbits recorded their 16th 20-win season in program history and seventh in nine seasons at the Division I level ... SDSU has held a double-digit rebounding advantage in eight of its 14 Summit League games ... the Jackrabbits held a 24-9 edge in bench points, with Walters leading the way with nine ... Katie Lingle scored seven points and Tara Heiser added six points - all at the free throw line - off the bench ... Eide scored in double figures for the 20th time this season ... Boever reached double figures for the fifth time in the last eight games ... Eide finished the day with 1,003 career points, tying her with Sarita DeBoer (1,003 points from 2002-05) for 31st place on the Jackrabbit career scoring chart ... attendance was 848 at Western Hall