Coyotes roll to 88-69 win over Jackrabbits

Coyotes roll to 88-69 win over Jackrabbits The 21st-ranked South Dakota men's basketball team (19-4, 8-4) won its fifth game in a row with a 88-69 victory over 15th-ranked South Dakota State in front of a season-high 8,482 fans Feb. 15 at the DakotaDome.

Senior forward Tommie King paced the Coyotes with 30 points and 10 rebounds, marking his sixth double-double of the season.

South Dakota out-rebounded SDSU, the league's top rebounding team, 42-34, including grabbing 17 boards on offense.

Both teams got off to a slow start, as they played to a 19-19 tie with just over six minutes to play in the first half.

USD broke the game open over the next four and half minutes with a 20-6 run to jump out to a 39-25 lead. Junior forward Derek Paben paced the Coyotes in the first half with 15 points, as South Dakota took a 43-30 advantage into the locker room at halftime.

USD built its lead up to as many as 24 points in the second half before eventually snapping a six-game losing streak to the Jacks.

Paben, a native of Pickrell, NE, finished the game with 22 points, his highest point total in 12 games, and five rebounds. Sophomore Luke Tibbetts scored 15 points on 6-of-7 shooting and grabbed six rebounds.

Sophomore point guard Josh Mueller turned in a gutsy performance after suffering a severely sprained ankle early in the second half, scoring 10 points and handing out eight assists.

USD, the nation's leader in free-throw shooting percentage, knocked down 24-of-29 attempts (82.8 percent) from the charity stripe, including connecting on 21-of-22 attempts in the second half (95.5 percent). For the game, the Coyotes shot 42.6 percent from the floor (29-of-68).

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