Tourney Time Update: SDSU vs USD Tomorrow

After two games the Jackrabbits now find themselves in the finals for Summit League Championship  for men’s basketball. After a tight game against Western Illinois the Jackrabbits took on the North Dakota State University Bison in the semi-finals. In the end, SDSU prevailed over the Bison 78 to 58. Except for close stretch in the second half SDSU enjoyed a comfortable lead for most of the game. They came bursting out of the gate on offense and played tough half court defense that allowed the Jacks to get out ahead early. Here are some take-aways and thoughts on tomorrow’s game.

Effective Half-Court Defense

While the Jackrabbits have shown that they know how to score They are not especially known for defense. Something that is especially important during the tournament. From tournaments in the past I have noticed that officiating tends to help defensive teams. Essentially, officials will let players play on and be more physical, which is fine, it is the post season after all. With that being said the Jackrabbits showed up on both sides of the court tonight. They were contesting every shot. Whenever the bison got to rim the they were rarely allowed to finish. This allowed SDSU to get ahead early, at one point in the first half the score was 36 to 12.

Jackrabbits Almost Let a Big Lead Get Away

The Bison came out at of the half-time break with a solid run of their own. At one point they pulled within eight points of the Jackrabbits, threatening to pull ahead. But SDSU responded by pulling away to a comfortable margin. It doubtful that such a lead will be possible against USD tomorrow.

David Jenkins Jr. Gets Hot

After an uncharacteristically quiet game against Western Illinois the freshman guard returned to form against NDSU. He got involved early by attacking the rim for early baskets. Sometimes it is important for a player to see the ball go in the basket regardless if it is a dunk or a three-point shot It appears those early baskets gave him confidence as Jenkins was the top scorer in the game with 24 points.

Championship Game Versus USD

As I write this blog USD has moved passed Denver and advanced to the final against SDSU. Undoubtedly, this will be another significant entry in the SDSU-USD rivalry. I’m sure USD still remembers their buzzer beater loss to SDSU during the tournament last year. USD was the only Summit league team to best the Jackrabbits this season. Both teams traded wins this season. The Last game went all the way down to the wire and I expect the game tomorrow will be a hard-fought battle as well.

Jackrabbits Need to Stop Matt Mooney

The Junior guard has had his best games against the Jackrabbits this season. Mooney scored 30+ points in both games this year. I would imagine that men’s squad will try to limit his scoring or it will be a difficult game for the Jackrabbits.


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