Seattle hands Coyote
men first home loss, 87-85 Mike Boxley's three-pointer with 13 seconds left was the game-winner as Seattle University edged The University of South Dakota men's basketball team 87-85, in a thriller Saturday night at the DakotaDome in Vermillion. The loss was the first of the year at home for the Coyotes (19-8), and it came in USD's final home game of 2008-09. Tyler Cain (Jr., Rochester, MN) paced USD with 26 points and 11 rebounds. Jesse Becker (Sr., Plymouth, MN) added 19 points, while Roman Gentry (Jr., Sioux City, IA) added 18. Dylan Grimsley (Sr., Sioux City, IA) collected 10 points and 10 rebounds for USD. Boxley's three-pointer was part of a wild final three minutes between the two teams. USD led 82-79 with 2:40 left but Seattle's Austen Powers, who led the Redhawks with 20 points, hit a three-pointer with 2:40 left to tie the game at 82-82. In the final minute, two free throws pushed Seattle ahead, 84-82. However, USD responded with a big play by Gentry, who took a pass from Cain and scored on a layup. Gentry was fouled and made the subsequent free throw to put USD up 85-84 with 40 seconds left. Boxley's three-pointer gave Seattle (19-7) an 87-85 advantage. The Coyotes had a chance to tie with a basket or win with a three-pointer in the final seconds but were unable to get off a shot. The Coyotes led by as many as 13 in the first half and took a 44-33 lead into halftime. Cain played a big role for USD with 13 points and six rebounds, while Grimsley and Becker had eight points each. Gentry had seven points. USD shot 42.1 percent in the first half and had a 27-17 edge in rebounds, with Steve Smith (Sr., Sioux Falls) leading with seven. Seattle shot 41.2 percent in the first half. In the second half, Seattle cut the deficit to 52-49 with 15:20 left, but USD answered with a 10-2 run, keyed by eight points from Cain, to build a 62-51 lead with 12:05 left. The Coyotes led 69-56 with 9:26 left before Seattle mounted another comeback to cut the lead down in the final minutes, setting up the thrilling finish. Louie Krogman (Fr., White River) had six points and a team-high five assists for USD. Cain had seven blocks, while Smith finished with eight rebounds. USD resumes action on Saturday, March 7 at the Independent Classic in Grand Forks, N.D. The opponent and game time for USD is to be determined. USD will also play a game at the event on Sunday, March 8. Notes: It was the final home game for four Coyote seniors: Becker, Mitch Begeman (Sr., Sioux Falls), Grimsley and Rane Mergen (Sr., Dell Rapids). Begeman finished with three points, four assists and two rebounds for USD, while Mergen had one point and one steal in time off the bench … USD finished 14-1 at home this season … there is a chance USD and Seattle could face each other at the Independent Classic, depending on seedings and the results of the first-round matchups.