Sioux Falls held Wayne State to just 38 percent shooting as the Cougars pulled away in the second half to defeat the Wildcats 77-65 in a Northern Sun Conference South Division men’s basketball game Friday evening at Rice Auditorium in Wayne. WSC falls to 5-11 and 2-5 in the league while the Cougars are now 10-3 and 6-1 in the NSIC South.
The Wildcats held a 17-12 lead at the 9:55 mark of the first half, but the Cougars held WSC scoreless for the next 5:13 while scoring 14 straight points to build a 26-17 advantage with 4:37 to play in the half.
Trailing 30-22, WSC scored the final six points of the first half and used a Nate Mohr 3-pointer at the buzzer to trim the Sioux Falls lead to 30-28 at intermission.
An early scoring run by Sioux Falls in the second half put the game out of reach, never allowing WSC a chance to get back into the contest.
A Nate Thayer 3-pointer got WSC within three at 36-33 with 16:58 remaining. The Cougars scored the next eight points to take an 11-point lead at 44-33.
Wayne State closed within six at 46-40 at the 12:50 mark following a basket from Al’Tavius Jackson.
But Sioux Falls put the game out of reach with an 11-2 run, going in front 58-42 with 8:20 remaining.
The Cougars maintained a double figure lead the rest of the game and finished with the 77-65 win.
Four Wildcats reached double figures in the game, led by sophomore center Jordan Janssen’s ninth double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds to go with five blocked shots. Al’Tavius Jackson (13), Nate Mohr (12) and Nate Thayer (10) also hit double figures for Wayne State.
WSC had its third-worst shooting night of the year, making just 22 of 57 shots for 38.6 percent. The ‘Cats were 7 of 22 from the 3-point line and 14-21 at the charity stripe.
Sioux Falls also had four players reach double digits, led by Trevon Adams with 16 points while Austin Slater followed with 15 points and 13 rebounds. Chase Grinde and Teathloach Pal added 10 points apiece.
The Cougars made 28 of 70 shots from the floor for 40 percent, including 9-19 behind the arc. USF was 12 of 19 at the free throw stripe.
Wayne State had one more rebound than Sioux Falls 44-43. Janssen grabbed 10 boards for WSC followed by Ben Dentlinger, Tramarcus Levi and Henry Penner with six each.
WSC had 16 turnovers in the game to just six for USF, resulting in a 15-6 advantage for the Cougars in points off turnovers. The Wildcats did record a season-high 10 blocked shots with Janssen rejecting five shots followed by Dentlinger with two.
WSC will be at home again Saturday hosting Southwest Minnesota State at 5:30 p.m. in Rice Auditorium.
#18 Sioux Falls forced Wayne State into a season-high 28 turnovers, resulting in a commanding 38-8 advantage in points off turnovers, as the Cougars held off the Wildcats 78-70 Friday evening in a Northern Sun Conference South Division women’s basketball game at Rice Auditorium in Wayne. USF is now 12-2 and 5-2 in league play while WSC drops to 9-4 and 4-3.
The visiting Cougars never trailed in the contest, but fought back several WSC rallies to record the road victory.
USF took an early 18-8 lead with 2:26 to play in the first quarter and led 21-15 after 10 minutes.
WSC was within four several times in the second quarter but the Cougars pushed the lead to 11 at 33-22 with 3:35 left before halftime. Sioux Falls maintained their double digit advantage and was in front 41-30 at intermission.
Sioux Falls made the opening basket of the second half for the biggest lead of the night at 43-30.
Wayne State closed within four late in the quarter at 51-47 following a Halley Busse 3-pointer before the Cougars finished the third stanza with a 58-50 lead.
The ‘Cats got as close as two in the final quarter at 59-57 following a Josey Ryan three-point play with 6:55 to play.
Sioux Falls then scored the next eight points and increased the advantage back to 10 at 67-57.
WSC made one final rally at the Cougars, getting within four at 74-70 with 1:30 to play following a Busse three-point play but Sioux Falls made four free throws late to seal the 78-70 win.
Busse finished with a season-high 21 points to pace the Wildcats, including 9-9 from the charity stripe. Other Wildcats reaching double figures were Brittany Bongartz with 18 points and Erin Norling notched her third double-double of the year with 16 points and a career-best 14 rebounds.
Wayne State finished the night making 23 of 50 shots for 46 percent including 6 for 15 from the 3-point line. The ‘Cats were 18-21 (85.7%) at the free throw line.
Kaely Hummel scored a game-high 22 points for Sioux Falls. Anna Goodhope contributed 18 points with Jessie Geer scoring 11 in the win.
The Cougars made 26 of 68 shots from the field and were 6 of 16 behind the arc. USF was 20-28 at the free throw line.
WSC won the rebounding battle 45-29 thanks to 14 boards from Norling and nine by Bongartz, but the Wildcats were plaqued with a season-high 28 turnovers to just seven by Sioux Falls, resulting in the 38-8 edge in points off turnovers for the Cougars.
Bongartz had six blocked shots in the game for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats will be at home again Saturday afternoon hosting Southwest Minnesota State in a 3:30 p.m. NSIC South Division contest in Rice Auditorium.