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Jacks on the Road Saturday

Courtesy: SDSU Sports Info
Release: 12/19/2013 09:02:17

             The South Dakota State women’s basketball team (9-4) begins a three-game road swing Saturday when it travels to Murfreesboro, Tenn., to take on mid-major power Middle Tennessee State (6-3) at 1 p.m. in the Murphy Center.

            The Jackrabbits own a five-game winning streak after capping a three-game homestand with a 67-50 win over Northern Illinois Tuesday.

            The Blue Raiders are also on a winning streak, beating South Florida, 68-62, Wednesday for their seventh consecutive win.

            Saturday’s game will be yet another battle of mid-major powers as South Dakota State is ranked 15th latest CollegeInsider Mid-Major poll while Middle Tennessee State received two votes in the Associated Press poll this week.

 

TRACKING THE JACKRABBITS

Radio - Audio coverage via the Jackrabbit Extra subscription service at GoJacks.com with play-by-play commentator J.J. Hartigan.

KJJQ 910 AM - Brookings
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KGFX 92.7 FM – Pierre


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JACKRABBIT STORYLINES

-Dakota State plays its first road game since knocking off Wisconsin-Green Bay Dec. 7. The Jackrabbits are 1-2 on the road.

-The Jackrabbits will be protecting a five-game winning streak while Middle Tennessee State has won its last seven game, including a 68-32 victory over Kennesaw State in its last home outing Dec. 12.

-The Jacks have lost their last two games in Murfreesboro, falling 59-49, Nov. 17, 2011, and 70-51, Nov. 28, 2010.

-SDSU enters the contest looking to score more points than it did in its previous three road games. The Jacks average 60.7 points on the road while the Blue Raiders score at a 65.6 clip in the Murphy Center.

-Just like South Dakota State, Middle Tennessee State has played a couple of nationally ranked teams during its nonconference schedule. The Blue Raiders lost to then-No. 3/4 Tennessee in their home opener Nov. 8 and to then-No. 7/7 Kentucky, 84-72, Nov. 24.

-With the fall semester behind them, the Jackrabbits will be able to focus solely on basketball until classes resume in mid-January. South Dakota State will have five games before beginning the spring semester Jan. 13.

A Quick Glance at South Dakota State

-Head coach Aaron Johnston’s probable starters vs. Middle Tennessee State are senior Hannah Strop (3.7 ppg, 5.0 rpg), junior forward Mariah Clarin (8.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg), junior guards Megan Waytashek (13.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg), Gabrielle Boever (5.7 ppg, 3.2 apg) and senior guard Steph Paluch (9.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg). The lineup sports a 8-4 record.

-Waytashek has scored in double figures in 10 of 13 games, and seven other Jacks have posted double-digit scoring games. Waytashek, junior Megan Stuart and freshman Kerri Young have SDSU’s only 20-plus point games this season. Clarin recorded the Jacks’ second double-double with 13 points and 15 rebounds at Wis.-Green Bay Dec. 7.

-SDSU is shooting 40.9 percent from the field, 36 percent from three-point range and 71 percent from the free-throw line. The Jacks are also averaging 70.8 points per game and limiting opponents to 65.8 points per game.

-The Jacks have a deep squad with 10 players averaging at least 13 minutes per game. Their bench averages 29.8 points per outing this season.

Middle Tennessee State

-Middle Tennessee State is 8-3 on the season and have a seven-game winning streak. They beat Central Florida Monday, 63-51, and won at South Florida Wednesday, 68-62.

-Middle Tennessee State was picked to win Conference USA after posting records of 25-8 overall and 17-3 in the Sun Belt East Division last year. Senior forward Ebony Rowe was named to the C-USA Preseason Team. Rowe was also one of 25 players selected to the prestigious Wade Trophy Watch list, while also being named to the Naismith Trophy Watch List for the second consecutive year. She was a Naismith top 30 finalist last season.

-Rowe averages a double-double, scoring 22.6 points per game and grabbing 11.5 rebounds per outing. Junior guard Shanice Cason is scoring at a 9.8 clip and dishes a team-best 3.0 assists per game.  

-Middle Tennessee is shooting 40.5 percent from the field, 28 percent from three-point range and 63.4 percent from the free-throw line.

-The Blue Raiders returns three starters, 11 letterwinners, and adds four freshmen.

Middle Tennessee State Series

-Saturday’s game will be the eighth meeting between SDSU and Middle Tennessee State. The Jackrabbits hold a 4-3 series lead. 

-In the last meeting, SDSU beat Middle Tennessee State, 63-56, Dec. 1, 2012, in Frost Arena. Megan Waytashek posted her first collegiate double-double in the win with 13 points and 10 rebounds. Ebony Rowe led the Blue Raiders with 23 points and seven rebounds.

-South Dakota State has a 2-2 record in road games vs. Middle Tennessee State. It last won in Murfreesboro in 2006, 72-61, Nov. 13.

-Senior Steph Paluch, who has played in two games vs. the Blue Raiders, averages 3.0 points, and Waytashek is scoring at a 9.0-clip and grabbing 6.0 rebounds against Middle Tennessee State.

-Middle Tennessee State’s Rowe averages 14.5 points and 7.5 rebounds vs. the Jackrabbits in two outings.

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