WEEKLY NOTEBOOK: No. 13 (w/stats)
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- The first half of the #SummitMBB league schedule is in the books and preseason favorite South Dakota State ended up right where the Jacks were predicted to finish by the end of the season -- in first place. It took a win over Omaha Saturday in their final game of the opening eight contests to get there, however, as the upstart Mavs were also sitting at 6-1 entering the first-place showdown in Brookings.
SDSU took the contest 83-73 to win its sixth straight while Omaha saw its five-game winning streak come to an end. It was also the Jack's 16th-straight Summit League home win. Despite the loss, the Mavs, who were picked eighth in the preseason poll, enter the second half in sole possession of second place thanks to a 6-2 record and five starters all averaging in double figures (only Summit League team that can make that claim).
FIVE THINGS YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED...
• Purdue Fort Wayne's John Konchar became the Mastodons' all-time leading scorer last week after scoring 15 points in an overtime home loss to Omaha. He came back the next game with another 15-point performance to help the 'Dons snap a three-game losing streak in #SummitMBB play. Konchar also had three steals last week to move into second place on The Summit League's all-time charts in that category with 246.
• After putting together a pair of 30-point, 15-rebound double-doubles in two home wins last week, South Dakota State senior Mike Daum was named the Lute Olson National Player of the Week by CollegeInsider.com. It was the second time Daum has won the award this season (Dec. 3) as he joined Marquette's Markus Howard as the only other play to win the honor multiple times in 2018-19.
• The Fighting Leathernecks have won back-to-back games and held opponents under 60 points in both of those victories. It marks the first time Western Illinois has won back-to-back Summit League games since early in the 2016-17 season.
• South Dakota split a pair of games last week as senior Trey Burch-Manning returned from a four-game absence. The All-Summit League performer came off the bench in both contests, averaging 11.5 ppg and 6.5 rpg.
• North Dakota State became the final #SummitMBB team to win a road game this season, but it was an important one as the 67-57 victory at Oral Roberts moved them to .500 at 4-4 in league play. JUCO-transfer Vinnie Shahid broke out of a scoring slump in the win, going 6-for-9 from beyond the arc to tally a game-high 23 points after averaging just 4.7 ppg in NDSU's last three contests.
UPCOMING SCHEDULE (TV/Stream; all times local to site)
Wednesday, January 30
South Dakota at Purdue Fort Wayne 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 31
North Dakota at Western Illinois* (WIU-TV/E3) 7 p.m.
SDSU at Oral Roberts* (KGEB/E+) 7 p.m.
Saturday, February 2
Purdue Fort Wayne at Oral Roberts* 7 p.m.
NDSU at Western Illinois* (WIU-TV/E3) 7 p.m.
Sunday, February 3
North Dakota at Omaha* (MSN2/COX/E3) 12 p.m.
SDSU at Denver* (Altitude) 1 p.m.
all times local
Wednesday, January 23
South Dakota 70, North Dakota 56*
Thursday, January 24
Omaha 85, Purdue Fort Wayne 79 (OT)*
SDSU 87, NDSU 69*
Saturday, January 26
Western Illinois 65, South Dakota 59*
SDSU 83, Omaha 73*
Purdue Fort Wayne 91, Denver 81*
NDSU 67, Oral Roberts 57*
*Summit League contest
MAKE IT COUNT
South Dakota State enters the week tied for second nationally in field goal percentage (50.7) and fourth in 3-point field goal percentage (41.6). The Jacks are making 9.8 3-pointers per game which is 22nd nationally and sophomore David Jenkins, Jr., is leading that charge. He is making 3.4/g and shooting 48.1 percent from beyond the arc (fifth nationally).
THE NET RESULTS
Here's a look at how Summit League members are stacking up in the NCAA's new "NET" rankings system, which replaced the RPI from year's past.
Through games of Jan. 28:
South Dakota State (101)
South Dakota (205)
North Dakota State (224)
Purdue Fort Wayne (229)
North Dakota (290)
Western Illinois (291)
Oral Roberts (304)
NOTING THE PIONEERS...
• Ronnie Harrell, Jr., registered his fourth double-double of the season and first since Dec. 9 after going for 24 points and 11 rebounds in Saturday's 91-81 loss at Purdue Fort Wayne.
• It was the sixth time this season that Harrell, Jr., eclipsed the 20-point plateau, finishing one point shy of his season high of 25 (at Omaha; Dec. 28).
• The Pioneers have been the top free-throw shooting team in league play. DU is 90-for-118 (76.3) as a unit and Tory Stewart-Miller is 14-for-14 to lead the way. Senior Joe Rosga, who is the league's all-time leader in free throw percentage, is off to a 12-for-13 start in league play.
• DU opens the second half of #SummitMBB play at home on Sunday against league-leader South Dakota State. The Jacks won the first matchup 78-66.
NOTING THE FIGHTING HAWKS...
• The Fighting Hawks will have had an eight-day break going into the second half of #SummitMBB play when they travel to Western Illinois for a Thursday matchup.
• UND won the first meeting with the Leathernecks as both Marlon Stewart and Conner Avants had 21 points in that victory.
• Avants tops the team's scorers in league play at 14.3 ppg while Stewart is close behind at 14.1 ppg. Avants also leads the league in field goal percentage (61.7).
• Unfortunately for UND, Avants missed the last game -- a 70-56 home loss to South Dakota -- is considered day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.
• Redshirt freshman Aanen Moody averaged 10.4 ppg off the bench in league play. He was one of three league rookies to average double figures in the first half of the season.
NOTING THE BISON...
• North Dakota State's first road win of the season gave the Bison a 4-4 record during the first half of league play.
• JUCO-transfer Vinnie Shahid led the way in the 67-57 win at Oral Roberts, breaking out of a scoring slump along the way.
• Shahid went 6-for-9 from beyond the arc to tally a game-high 23 points after averaging just 4.7 ppg in NDSU's last three contests.
• Junior Tyson Ward is averaging 13.3 ppg since returning to the starting lineup seven games ago, including a season-high 18-point effort at South Dakota State (Jan. 24). He now leads the Bison in scoring at 11.8 ppg.
NOTING THE MAVERICKS...
• The Mavericks saw their five-game winning streak come to an end Saturday at South Dakota State in a first-place showdown with the Jackrabbits.
• Omaha got a season-high 23 points from K.J. Robinson and Mitch Hahn posted his third double-double in the past five games in the 83-73 loss to SDSU.
• Hahn matched his career-high rebound total of 15 from Omaha's 85-79 OT win at Purdue Fort Wayne Thursday in the loss to the Jacks. He added 14 points vs. SDSU and led all scorers with 23 against the Mastodons.
• The Mavs trailed by as many as 17 in the comeback win in the Hoosier State that ended up keeping them in sole possession of second place entering the second half.
• Omaha's lone game this week is a Sunday rematch with UND, who the Mavs also rallied to beat 92-91 (Jan. 10) on a 3-pointer by Hahn with seven seconds to play.
NOTING THE GOLDEN EAGLES...
• Oral Roberts has dropped two straight with preseason All-Summit League performer Emmanuel Nzekwesi sitting out with an injury.
• The latest was a 67-57 setback to North Dakota State that opened a four-game homestand for the Golden Eagles.
• Redshirt freshman Kevin Obanor has started in Nzekwesi's place the past two games is averaging 19.0 ppg in those contests.
• For the season, Obanor is the league's top scoring freshman at 12.3 ppg and he has upped that to a 17.1 ppg average since Summit League play began.
• The Golden Eagles open the second half of league play against league-leading South Dakota State.
NOTING THE MASTODONS...
• The Mastodons have been part of both overtime contests in #SummitMBB play this season. The first went their way while the second was an 85-79 setback to Omaha last Thursday.
• Senior John Konchar entered that contest needing 15 points to become the program's all-time scoring leader and he ended up right on that figure thanks to a pair of overtime free throws.
• Konchar reached that total again in Purdue Fort Wayne's 91-81 victory over Denver Saturday that halted a three-game losing streak.
• Junior Matt Holba went for a career-high 23 points in that victory, burying 6-of-7 from distance.
• Purdue Fort Wayne opens the second half with a Wednesday night tilt against South Dakota.
NOTING THE COYOTES...
• The Coyotes have dropped three of four, but did get All-Summit League performer Trey Burch-Manning back in the lineup last week in a win at North Dakota (70-56).
• The Coyotes, who boast the league's overall top scoring defense, limited the Fighting Hawks to the lowest point total by a team in league play during the first half.
• Burch-Manning came off the bench in both contests, averaging 11.5 ppg and 6.5 rpg in his return to action.
• In Sunday's 65-59 loss to Western Illinois, he had 14 points and Triston Simpson led all scorers with 17 points.
• Sophomore Stanley Umude was limited to just three points, seeing a streak of 10 straight double-figure scoring games come to an end.
• The Coyotes open the second half on the road Wednesday at Purdue Fort Wayne.
NOTING THE JACKRABBITS...
• Senior Mike Daum became the first Division I player in the last 20 years to record three straight games of 30-plus points and 15-plus rebounds.
• Daum actually has four consecutive 30-plus point double-doubles to his credit and is tied second nationally in that category with 14 on the season.
• The Jacks sit alone atop the #SummitMBB standings thanks a six-game win streak that pushed their overall home winning streak in league games to 16.
• The latest victory was an 83-73 win over former league co-leader Omaha that saw Daum go for 33 points and 16 rebounds en route to being named Lute Olson National Player of the Week.
NOTING THE FIGHTING LEATHERNECKS...
• The Fighting Leathernecks have won back-to-back games and held opponents under 60 points in both of those victories.
• The latest was their first league road win of the season -- a 65-59 victory at South Dakota.
• It's the first time WIU has won back-to-back league games since early in the 2017 campaign.
• True freshman Ben Pyle turned in his best performance of the league season in the win over the Coyotes, finishing with 15 points and 10 rebounds. The double-double was his second of the season.
• Pyle led a quartet of Leathernecks in double figures, including leading scorer Kobe Webster, who added 13.
• The Leathernecks open the second half with back-to-back home games this week against North Dakota and North Dakota State.