Coyote men get on winning track with victory Coyote David Nour (3) drives for the basket past Minnesota-Duluth's John Emerson during hoop action Saturday night in the DakotaDome. After four-straight losses in North Central Conference play, the South Dakota men's basketball team (17-5, 3-4 NCC) got back on track with a much needed 79-62 win at the DakotaDome over Minnesota-Duluth.
The victory evened the season series at one game apiece, in front of 3,879, behind Josh Mueller's second-straight 20-plus point performance.
After scoring 27 points in the Coyotes overtime loss at Nebraska-Omaha on Thursday, Feb. 3, Mueller, a senior, knocked in 24 points on 50 percent shooting from the field, including six three-pointers. He was also a perfect 4-of-4 at the free throw line.
Mueller gave USD a 32-18 lead on one of his three-pointers at 4:35. However, the Coyotes went scoreless the remainder of the half, except for a three-point play from Steve Anderson at 2:39, allowing the UMD Bulldogs to crawl back to 35-32 at halftime on a jumper by Sean Seaman at the buzzer.
In the second half, UMD continued its run and built up a six-point lead of its own, 45-38, on a Seaman three-pointer at 14:51. Mueller answered with two back-to-back three's to tie the game and fuel a 20-0 USD run over the next 6:28. The run was capped by a pair of free throws by senior Luke Tibbetts at 8:23 giving the Coyotes a 59-45 lead.
For the game, USD shot 43.9 percent (25-of-57) from the field and 12-of-24 (50 percent) behind the arc. At the charity stripe, the Coyotes were 17-of-20 (85 percent). South Dakota improved to 13-2 on the season when outrebounding the opposition, by pulling down 45 boards to 28 for UMD.
USD's Turner Trofholz added 13 points and eight rebounds, while Tibbetts finished in double figures for the seventh time this season by adding 11. Anderson led all players with 14 rebounds.
Seaman scored 18 points for UMD, while John Emerson had 15. Ryan Foss and Matt Rawley added 12 and 10, respectively.
As a team, the Bulldogs shot 39.3 percent (24-of-61) from the field and were 10-of-23 (43.5 percent) from three-point land. At the line, UMD was 4-of-6 (66.7 percent).
USD will continue its four-game homestand, when it hosts Minnesota State on Friday, Feb. 11 at 8 p.m.