BROOKINGS — The quest for a regular season league title for the University of South Dakota women will have to wait.

They, like every other Summit League team, ran into a buzzsaw at Frost Arena.

Feeding off the buzz of another large crowd, South Dakota State spoiled the potential celebration for the first-place Coyotes in a 77-67 win Saturday afternoon — moving to within one game of USD in the Summit League standings.

The Coyotes (21-6, 11-3) could have captured their first regular season title after winning the post-season crown last season, but players weren’t ready to say that’s a top goal.

“The last couple years, we haven’t had that kind of title, so I think we’ll still be fine,” said senior Nicole Seekamp, who scored 18 points and dished out seven assists.

Were the second-place Jackrabbits (19-8, 10-4) thinking about spoiling USD’s celebration?

Not exactly, said a smiling Megan Waytashek.

“We’re just taking it one game at a time,” said the senior, who had 18 points, seven points and four assists. “We can only take care of ourselves.”

The Jackrabbits also took care of the Coyotes, beating their in-state rival for the 19th straight time in Brookings — dating back to 1990.

The combination of freshman Macy Miller (10 points, 9 rebounds) and Waytashek (8 points, 5 rebounds) sent the Jacks to a 34-26 halftime lead.

That 1-2 punch was potent, sure, but the hosts scored seven more points at the free throw line.

South Dakota had a prime opportunity to make a serious rally late in the second half.

Down by eight points after the under-4 media timeout, USD missed three consecutive open three-pointers and the Jacks responded with a pair of foul shots to go up 72-62.

The biggest thorn in USD’s side was the play of Miller, a Mitchell native who had her first collegiate double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

“That’s no shocker,” USD head coach Amy Williams said. “She handles herself with such great poise.

“She’s a tremendous player that we’ll to find a way to deal with the next three years,” the coach added with a smile.

In the short term, the Coyotes and Jacks both close the regular season with home games against Western Illinois and IUPUI.

And with a 1-game lead in the league standings, the Coyotes weren’t exactly in panic mode after Saturday’s loss.

“It’s easy to get them to buy in when they still control their own destiny,” Williams. “We can either learn from our mistakes or we can pout about it.

She then added with a smile, “and one of those is a lot more productive than the other.”

Any talk of regular season titles was downplayed by SDSU head coach Aaron Johnston, who pointed to the final two games as a chance to improve.

“We can’t really control anyone who’s in front of us, or behind us,” he said. “We just have to find a way to play at a high level.”

The Jacks held USD, one of the nation’s top-scoring teams, to 38 percent shooting and 4-of-21 on three-pointers — both a source of pride for SDSU.

“This really helps us moving forward,” Miller said. “We’re building momentum.”

Bridget Arens, a Crofton, Nebraska native, came off the bench to score 12 points for USD, which also got 10 points and six rebounds from Margaret McCloud.

The Jacks got 12 points from Kerri Young and 10 points from Mariah Clarin.

SOUTH DAKOTA (21-6, 11-3)

Lisa Loeffler 1-5 0-0 2; Margaret McCloud 4-8 2-2 10; Raeshel Contreras 3-11 0-0 8; Nicole Seekamp 6-13 6-7 18; Heidi Hoff 0-3 0-0 0; Tia Hemiller 2-7 0-1 5; Kelly Stewart 1-4 3-4 6; Bridget Arens 5-5 2-4 12; Jaylah Jackson 0-0 0-0 0; Kate Liveringhouse 2-7 2-2 6. TOTALS 24-63 15-20 67.


Mariah Clarin 4-10 2-5 10; Ellie Thompson 1-4 4-5 6; Kerri Young 4-12 2-2 12; Macy Miller 6-13 4-5 16; Megan Waytashek 5-12 7-7 18; Alexis Alexander 0-1 0-0 0; Clarissa Ober 2-3 5-6 9; Chloe Cornemann 0-1 0-0 0; Rachel Walters 2-5 1-1 6; Tiffaney Flaata 0-2 0-1 0. TOTALS 24-63 25-32 77.

Halftime: SDSU 34-26. Three-Pointers: SDSU 4-17 (Young 2-5, Waytashek 1-3, Walters 1-4, Thompson 0-1, Ober 0-1, Cornemann 0-1, Miller 0-2), USD 4-21 (Contreras 2-9, Stewart 1-2, Hemiller 1-4, Loeffler 0-1, Hoff 0-2, Seekamp 0-3). Total Rebounds: SDSU 48 (Miller 10), USD 39 (McCloud 6, Seekamp 6). Assists: USD 15 (Seekamp 7), SDSU 10 (Waytashek 4). Turnovers: SDSU 10, USD 11. Personal Fouls: SDSU 21, USD 26. Fouled Out: McCloud, Arens. Attendance: 4594.


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