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UND (6-10, 0-3) vs SDSU (7-9, 2-2) 1/7 1 PM


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After a heartbreaking loss at the buzzer to the rival Yotes, UND closes their 3 game homestand of the Dakota School with the defending Summit League Champions, SDSU, who are trying to reestablish themselves in the early goings of Summit League play.

About SDSU:

If you look back to last season, what SDSU managed to do was very special.  No team has managed to run the table in the conference in the history of the Summit League, but they did it.  It was quite the special team:  With Douglas Wilson and Baylor Scheierman leading the way as the stars, a plucky supporting cast that included Luke Appel, Charlie Easley, Alex Arians, and a splashly freshman named Zeke Mayo.  No wonder they were the ones standing on the mountain top at the end of the season.  Their NCAA tournament appearance was short lived as they ran into a good Providence team that made it all the way to the Sweet 16, denying SDSU their first NCAA tournamanet win.  It really is the one thing they are missing, despite 5 straight regular season Summit League titles.

After the season, it was a bit of a change.  Wilson graduated and Baylor went off to Creighton.  Despite the massive losses, there was reason for optimism with a budding star in Mayo and still a solid returning supporting class.  Still enough to potentially complete for another Summit crown.

The season hasn't quite been the start that SDSU wanted.  It started with a flash by taking down good Boise and St. Bonaventure and losing a close to Akron, but since then... it has been a bit of a struggle.  It has helped that both Charlie Easley and Luke Appel have been knocked out due to injurues.  Matthew Mors, the Wisconsin transfer has been a solid addition to the team, William Kyle III has produced a solid freshman season, Zeke Mayo has taken a nice step forward.  However, it hasnt been the usual Jackrabbit dominance. A team that shot 45% from 3 last year is only shooting it 31% this year. 

Still, with a team that has the talent and experience that SDSU has, they still have a chance to put it together and make a run in March.  Especially when they can get healthy again.

About Eric Henderson (4th year: 75-31, 42-8 in Summit)

Hendo has done nothing but win at SDSU.  In his first 3 years, he has won the regular season title 3 times and last year finally made the NCAA tournament.  Hendo played at Wayne State under Greg McDermott and after his playing time, made stops at Wayne State and NDSU before coming to SDSU as an assistant before taking over when Otz left for UNLV.   This season is probably his biggest challenge so far, but if they can figure it out and make it another run at a Summit crown, it may only be a matter of time before he moves onto bigger and better things.

Key Player: Zeke Mayo (6'3 Sophomore Guard)

The Sophomore Guard from Kansas exploded onto the scene last year as one of the best freshman in the conference (and in some peoples eyes, should have won the Freshman POY award).  He shot the ball very well from the field, 3 point line, and the free throw line.  This year, his scoring numbers are up (about 15 a game) and has increased his rebounding (6.3 rpg) from last year.  His shooting numbers are a bit down right now, especially from 3, but he is a very dangerous play that can go get 30 at any point. See his performance against WIU and EWU.  UND needs to be aware of him at all time and do not allow him to get going.

Other Summit League Action:

KC (2-1) @ ORU (3-0):  The best offense vs the best defense.  Oral Roberts has to feel good right now as the early favorites to win the league. Abmas continues to put on a show.  KC is a surprise so far with their 1-2 punch at guard along with their tough defense.  Can the Roos steal one in Tulsa?

Omaha (2-2) @ UST (3-2):  The Mavs got a big win down in Malcomb while the Tommies took down Denver.  Should be a fun one in St. Paul as these two teams are trying to jocky for position in the middle/top of the conference.  Fidler vs Bjorklund should be an excellent matchup.

USD (3-1) @ NDSU (2-2): These two teams are finding themselves after a slow start.  USD with their guards, NDSU finally playing through Nelson AND Morgan.  How can USD guard the forwards?  How will NDSU defend the USD shooting?  

DU (1-3) @ WIU (1-3):  Two teams looking to get their seasons back on DU.  A dream non-conference start has turned into a nightmare for an injured DU squad.  WIU can't seem to get it going.  Which team is able to get it going today and perhaps jumpstart their season.


1) Contain Mayo

2) Find consistent offense

3) Growth of the freshman

The Call:

Like the other two games, this is a very winnable game and home court needs to be defended.  UND needs to find a way to get this done.  Period.   Eaglestaff and Omot have another big game, but... they fall short one more time.

SDSU 71-69

Game is on the Tres. 

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