Coyotes wrap up regular season with win over St. Cloud State

Coyotes wrap up regular season with win over St. Cloud State
The South Dakota men's basketball team (19-8, 7-5 NCC) completed the regular season with an 85-67 North Central Conference victory over the St. Cloud State Huskies (18-9, 8-4 NCC) at the DakotaDome Feb. 25 to finish a perfect 6-0 in NCC home games and 12-1 at home on the season.

The game featured the two top post players in the NCC, USD's senior All-American Turner Trofholz (Schuyler, NE) and SCSU's Adam Siegle. The two did not disappoint as they combined for 57 points and 26 rebounds.

The Huskies scored first at the 18:24 mark on a jumper by Adam Sullivan, but it was SCSU's only lead of the game, as the Coyotes slowly built a nine-point lead at the 8:13 mark on a free throw by sophomore Dustin Little (Castlewood). SCSU then scored the next seven points to slice the lead to two, 23-21, on a Siegle jumper at 6:25.

USD answered with a 17-7 run to lead, 40-28, on a three-pointer by redshirt freshman Jesse Becker (Plymouth, MN) with 53 seconds left in the half. The Huskies then hit a pair of free throws in the final 30 seconds to cut the Coyote halftime lead to 40-30.

In the second half, the USD lead wavered around a 10-point Coyote advantage for the first 13 minutes as the teams exchanged baskets.

After SCSU cut the lead to nine points, 64-55, at the 7:04 mark on a Siegle lay-up, Trofholz hit a pair of free throws and fellow senior David Nour (Armour) connected on a long-range three-pointer to put the Coyotes ahead by 14 points, 69-55, at 6:44.

From there, the lead was raised to 20 points, 85-65, on a three-pointer by freshman Mitch Begeman (Sioux Falls) with 1:03 left in the contest. The Huskies added a late field goal to set the final score at 85-67.

Senior Night proved to be a great going out party for Trofholz, as he scored a game-high 30 points and collected eight rebounds. It was the fourth time in his career, that he reached the 30-point mark, giving him 88 career double digit scoring games, including the last 68 straight. For his career, Trofholz has scored 1,855 points (third, USD) and grabbed 889 rebounds (second, USD).

Becker finished with 21 points and five assists, while sophomore Eric Hall (Huron) scored 16 and grabbed six rebounds.

Collectively, the Coyotes shot 47.3 percent (26-of-55) from the field, including 46.7 percent (7-of-15) beyond the three-point arc. USD helped themselves by knocking down 26-of-32 free throws (81.3 percent) and by outrebounding the Huskies, 38-32.

South Dakota committed seven turnovers in the game to 11 for the Huskies, which gave USD a 15-4 advantage in points off turnovers.

SCSU shot 40.4 percent (23-of-57) from the field and were 4-of-16 (25 percent) from three-point range. At the stripe, the Huskies made 17-of-21 free throws for 81 percent.

Siegle finished with 27 points and a game-high 18 rebounds, while guard David Dreas added 13.

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