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Jacks go for sixth straight win Saturday

Courtesy: SDSU Sports Info
Release: 02/14/2014 17:11:13

South Dakota State ran its win streak to five on Thursday, tying a season-long streak, with a 77-60 win at Omaha. The Jackrabbits now look to extend the streak on Saturday at Western Illinois, when they take on the Fighting Leathernecks at 7 p.m. inside Western Hall.

The winning streak, which started with an improbable come-from-behind 74-73 win at Denver on Jan. 30, also includes a 70-68 win at South Dakota on Feb. 1, and home wins over Fort Wayne and IUPUI last weekend at home.

The fifth win came on Thursday, when the Jackrabbits got a game-high 17 points from Brayden Carlson and double-doubles from both Cody Larson and Jake Bittle, who both finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds, a career-high for Bittle.

SDSU, who outscored the Mavericks 48-16 in the paint, also got good minutes off the bench from Marcus Heemstra and Zach Horstman, who posted career-highs with 26 minutes and nine points.

The Jacks grabbed a season-high 50 rebounds in the game, and held a 17-7 advantage in offensive rebounds, which led to a 21-6 advantage in second chance points. 

NEXT UP FOR THE JACKRABBITS – SDSU plays its final regular season road game next Saturday in Fargo, N.D. against North Dakota State. The Jacks and Bison tip at 2 p.m.    

JACKRABBIT QUICK HITS

• Carlson cracked the SDSU career top-10 in 3-pointers at Omaha with 151
• Dykstra’s streak of 10 straight games in double figures ended at Omaha on Thursday (six points)
• Larson holds the longest active streak of double figure scoring for SDSU with three games in a row
• Dykstra made 32 straight free throws from Jan. 9-Feb. 1 before missing his 33rd attempt at USD
• Dykstra made 46 of his last 48 free throw attempts dating back to Jan. 9, 2013 (96 percent)
• Dykstra is 47 for 50 from the free throw line in Summit League play (94 percent)
• Garrett Callahan made 35 straight free throws over 11 games from Jan. 29-March 7, 2009
• SDSU plays out the season with a trio of 1,000 point scorers for the first time since the final two games of 2010, when Garrett Callahan, Kai Williams and Clint Sargent all played with at least 1,000 career points
• Bittle and Larson tied for game-highs in rebounds in the last two games (7, 10)
Zach Horstman played a career-high minutes in the last two games (21, 26)

TRACKING THE JACKRABBITS

RABBITS ON THE RADIO – Originated from the AM 570 WNAX studios in Yankton, S.D., every SDSU men’s basketball games can be heard live on a total of nine stations on the Jackrabbit Sports Network.

WNAX - 570 AM – Yankton       
KBFS - 1450 AM – Belle Fourche         
KJJQ - 910 AM – Brookings
KDSJ - 980 AM – Deadwood    
KORN - 1490 AM – Mitchell      
KOLY - 1300 AM – Mobridge
KGFX - 1060 AM – Pierre         
KJOE - 106.1 FM – Pipestone, Minn.    
KSDR - 1480 AM – Watertown

Pierre, S.D., native, and 2012 South Dakota Sportscaster of the Year, Tyler Merriam returns for his third season as the voice of Jackrabbit men’s basketball. He also serves as the voice of Jackrabbit football and baseball. 

THE JACKRABBIT INSIDER ON KELOLAND-TV – Fans of South Dakota State Athletics can get a weekly behind-the-scenes look at all 21 Jackrabbit varsity sports teams by tuning into “The Jackrabbit Insider.”

Hosted by Tyler Merriam, the show airs on Sundays on MyUTV at 10:30 p.m., followed by a broadcast on Sunday at 11 p.m. on KELOLAND-TV.

THE JACKRABBITS ON TWITTER
Jackrabbit Athletics: @SDSU_Jacks
Men’s Basketball: @JackrabbitHoops

THE JACKRABBITS ON FACEBOOK
Jackrabbit Athletics: SDSU Jackrabbit Nation
Men’s Basketball: South Dakota State University Men’s Basketball

NOTEWORTHY

DOUBLE-DOUBLE DIFFERENCEJordan Dykstra and Cody Larson combined for eight double-doubles over the first 11 games of the season, but for just two over the last 13 games. Larson’s 13 point, 11 rebound game vs. Western Illinois on Jan. 16, and Dykstra’s 16 point, 11 rebound game on Feb. 1, represent the only Jackrabbit double-double over the that span, but the Jacks broke free for two more double-doubles, when both Larson and Jake Bittle finished with 16 points and 10 rebounds on Thursday at Omaha.

20 POINTS PER GAMEBrayden Carlson entered his senior season with a pair of 20-point games under his belt, both of them last year, but scored 20 or more points in seven games this season, all in a span of 11 games. As a team, one Jackrabbit scored at least 20 points in 15 of team’s 25 games, with at least two players scoring 20 points in two games.

Additionally, the Jacks put five players in double figures in two games this season, both at home; vs. Southwest Minnesota State on Nov. 18, and vs. Belmont on Dec. 14.

DYKSTRA CRACKS TOP-FIVE ON SCORING LISTJordan Dykstra became the 43rd member of the SDSU 1,000-Point Club in the Jacks win over South Dakota on Jan. 31, and immediately started to climb the scoring charts. He entered the 2013-14 season ranked 23rd all-time at SDSU with 1,149 points, and cracked the career top-10 on Jan. 9 at IUPUI. He enters tonight’s game ranked fifth all-time at SDSU with 1,556 points.

DYKSTRA CRACKS TOP-10 IN CAREER REBOUNDS – Dykstra joined an elite group of Jackrabbits on Jan. 11 at Fort Wayne, when he became the fourth player in school history to rank in the top-10 in points and rebounds in a career. He enters the night ranked sixth all-time at SDSU with 780 rebounds, 24 shy of fifth on the all-time list.

DYKSTRA CRACKS TOP-10 IN CAREER 3-POINTERS – Dykstra opened the season with 142 career 3-pointers, five shy of cracking the all-time top-10 at SDSU, which he did at Texas Tech on Nov. 21. He enters tonight’s game with 183, good for sixth all-time at SDSU.

WHITE HITS 1,000-POINT MILESTONE – Senior Chad White came up 53 points shy of becoming the 44th member of the SDSU 1,000-Point Club last year, but hit the mark at Texas Tech on Nov. 21. He continues his climb up the list, and enters today’s game ranked 23rd all-time with 1,170 points, nine points shy of 22nd all-time at SDSU.

WHITE IN ELITE COMPANYChad White entered the 2013-14 season with 169 career 3-point field goals, good for fifth all-time at SDSU. He moved up to fourth all-time on Jan. 11, and became the fourth Jackrabbit to sink at least 200 career 3-pointers vs. Western Illinois on Jan. 16. He now ranks third all-time with 217 career triples

CARLSON HITS 1,000 POINT MILESTONE – Senior Brayden Carlson scored 85 points as a freshman, but scored 254 as a sophomore and 317 as a junior, giving him 656 entering his senior season, 344 shy of the milestone, which he hit at the free throw line at South Dakota on Feb. 1. He enters tonight’s game ranked 39th all-time at SDSU, but needs just 11 points to climb two spots on the list.

CARLSON CRACKS TOP-10 IN CAREER 3-POINTERS – Carlson sank his 151st career 3-pooiner on Thursday at Omaha, which puts him in tie for 10th all-time at SDSU.

GOOD FOR THREE! – Three of the top-10 three-point shooters in SDSU history, based on 3-point field goal percentage, currently play for the Jackrabbits. Jordan Dykstra leads the way with .455 percent, Chad White ranks fifth with a .413 mark from deep, while Brayden Carlson enters the game ranked seventh all-time with a .404 career mark from long range.

THREE IN 1,000-POINT CLUB – The Jacks play with three members of the SDSU 1,000-Point Club, the first time since 2010, when Clint Sargent, Garrett Callahan and Kai Williams played the final two games of the season with at least 1,000 career points. Prior to that trio, the Jacks last played with three 1,000 point scorers during the 1968-69 season when John Thomas, Guy Mackner and Gene Zulk all played with 1,000 career points.

TONIGHT’S OPPONENT

WESTERN ILLINOIS FIGHTING LEATHERNECKS (9-15, 3-6 Summit) – Western Illinois enters the final game of the weekend riding a season-long three game losing streak after falling to league leader North Dakota State on Thursday. The Leathernecks opened the season with three straight losses. 

After opening league play with an overtime win at home against Omaha, Western also beat South Dakota at home and beat IUPUI in Indianapolis for their three league wins.  

THE SERIES vs. WESTERN ILLINOIS – The Jackrabbits lead the all-time series 13-3, with wins in each of the last 10 meetings, which includes season sweeps in the last four seasons and a 52-50 overtime win in The Summit League Championships on March 6, 2012.   

THE FIRST MEETING OF THE SEASON; Jan. 16, 2014; Frost Arena – South Dakota State opened its Summit League home opener with an 11-2 run over Western Illinois at Frost Arena, but the Jackrabbits didn’t run away with a win with a 64-55 win over the Fighting Leathernecks, who made the Jacks earn the victory.

“We weren’t very good offensive, particularly in the second half, you have to give them some credit, they played physical,” head coach Scott Nagy said. “When you look at the stats; we outrebounded them, we took care of the ball better, we shot way more free throws than they shot, and when you do those things, you’re probably going to win the basketball game.”

The Jackrabbits (10-8, 2-1 Summit) won the rebounding battle 32-26, committed three fewer turnovers and went 20 for 22 from the free throw line compared to a 12 for 18 night for the Leathernecks from the line.

Western Illinois (7-10, 1-1 Summit) answered the Jacks opening run with a 13-4 run to force the game’s only tie at 15-all with 10 minutes, 49 seconds left in the first half.

SDSU scored the next six points, and took a 34-27 lead into the locker room after a Brayden Carlson to Cody Larson alley-oop dunk off an inbound pass with less than a second to go in the half.

The Jacks shot 44.8 percent in the first half in going 13 for29 from the floor, compared to 35.3 percent in the second half on 6 of 17 shooting, but held the Leathernecks to 34.8 percent shooting in the second half, 8 of 23, after they went 10 for 20 in the opening frame.

The first half momentum carried over to the second half for the Jacks, which started with Chad White’s 200th career 3-pointer, part of a 10-2 run for that gave SDSU its largest lead of the game at 44-29, but Western stayed focused, and started its climb back into the game.

Up 50-40 with 9:10 to play, Western cut the lead to five at 53-48 with 6:33 to play, and again with 4:49 to play, but the Jacks didn’t let them get any closer for the rest of the game.

Jordan Dykstra led the Jacks with an even 20 points, including a perfect 10 for10 mark from the free throw line, which ties an SDSU single-game record for free throw percentage. Carlson added 16 points and Larson 13 points to go with his game-high 11 rebounds, which gives him his fourth double-double of the season.

Garret Covington led all players in the game with 24 points in a losing effort.

THE LEATHERNECKS THE LAST TIME OUT: Feb. 13, vs. North Dakota State – MACOMB, Ill. – Western Illinois cut its deficit to three points after Jabari Sandifer connected on a triple late Thursday evening, but it wasn’t enough as North Dakota State edged the Fighting Leathernecks, 56-52, inside Western Hall.

NDSU improves to 8-2 in the League and 19-6 overall. Western drops to 9-15 overall in the year and 3-6 in league play.

A back-and-forth first half led to the two teams finding themselves knotted up 24-24 with 3:08 to play before halftime.

For the remainder of the opening period and the first four minutes of the second half, the Bison outscored the Leathernecks 12-2 and led by 10 points, 36-26, at the 16:11 mark of the second.

WIU then began to chip away at the NDSU advantage, eventually cutting its deficit to one, 42-41, with 6:22 remaining in regulation.

The Leathernecks were unable to grasp the lead, but didn’t allow NDSU run away with it as the Bison never led by more six points for the remainder of the contest.

Sandifer did not commit a turnover in 28 minutes of action, while matching his season-high with six assists. The Naperville, Ill. native also posted 13 points in the contest, marking the third consecutive game his has scored in double figures, and grabbed four rebounds.

Adam Link also finished with 13 points in the loss on 6-of-10 shooting from the field. The senior forward also pulled down five rebounds and tallied a steal and an assist.

           

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