Coyote men crush SIUE, 116-79

Coyote men crush SIUE, 116-79 The University of South Dakota men's basketball team clinched its sixth straight 20-win season with a 116-79 win over Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville in the consolation of the Spring Thaw Tournament Sunday in Grand Forks, ND. The Coyotes wrapped up their 2008-09 season with an impressive offensive display that saw them score a season-high 116 points and have six players reach double figures. USD reached the 20-win mark for the 15th time in 21 seasons under Coach Dave Boots. Dylan Grimsley (Sr., Sioux City, IA) paced USD with a career-high 30 points. Tyler Cain (Jr., Rochester, MN) had 20 points. Louie Krogman (Fr., White River) added 15 points, while Roman Gentry (Jr., Sioux City, IA) collected 13. Jesse Becker (Sr., Plymouth, MN) had 11 points and Steve Smith (Sr., Sioux Falls) 10 for the Coyotes, who shot a torrid 66.6 percent (43-of-65) from the field, including 17-of-31 from three-point range. The game was close for the first 14 minutes of the first half before USD was able to build a cushion that it took into halftime. A 16-4 run, sparked by five points from Gentry and four from Grimsley, helped USD push its lead to 49-34 with 1:38 left in the first half. USD, which led 49-36 at halftime, shot 54.5 percent (17-of-31) in the first half, including 50 percent (5-of-10) from three-point range. SIUE shot 45.5 percent in the first half. Cain paced USD with 14 first half points, while Grimsley had 13 and Krogman had nine. Gentry had five points and four assists in the first half. USD continued to add to its lead in the second half, outscoring SIUE 22-11 over the first 5:39 to build a 71-47 lead. Steve Smith had eight points during that crucial stretch for USD, while Gentry, Krogman, Becker and Grimsley each hit three-pointers. From there, it was all USD as the Coyotes built their lead to as many as 39 points. The 67 points scored in the second half were the most scored in a half by USD this season. The Coyotes shot 76.5 percent (26-of-34) in the second half. Rane Mergen (Sr., Dell Rapids) had eight points off the bench for USD. Becker led with eight assists, while Krogman and Gentry had six each. Grimsley led with eight rebounds while Krogman had seven. The contest marked the game for four Coyote seniors: Becker, Mitch Begeman (Sr., Sioux Falls), Grimsley and Mergen. That group combined for 54 points in the game.

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