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    SDSU MBB: Jacks cruise past South Dakota

    VERMILLION -- Alex Arians put together a career day, four Jackrabbits scored in double figures and South Dakota State men's basketball cruised to an impressive 79-61 victory Sunday afternoon at the Sanford Coyote Sports Center.

    In front of an announced sell-out crowd of 6,014, the Jackrabbits (12-6, 2-1 Summit League) shot 46.9 percent as a team and hit 12 3-pointers to dismantle the Coyote defense. SDSU held South Dakota to 32.8 percent shooting overall and put together a plus-11 showing on the boards.

    Arians set career-highs in points (19) and assists (five) while matching his previous best in rebounds (10), notching his second double-double in a Jackrabbit uniform.

    Skyler Flatten led the Jackrabbits with 20 points and also notched a career-high in rebounds, pulling down nine on the day alongside three assists and three steals. 

    David Jenkins and Tevin King each finished with 14 points, as Jenkins hit four 3-pointers and King tallied four assists.

    Mike Daum had 10 rebounds on the day.

    "I'm proud of our guys and how focused we were," head coach T.J. Otzelberger said. "I thought we played the game we needed to play, especially on the defensive end of the floor. I think sharing the basketball was really important as well, and I thought our guys did a great job of that."

    South Dakota State roared out of the gates to open up a 10-3 lead early, forcing a USD timeout at 16:12. The Coyotes cut the lead to three (12-9) out of the reset, but the Jackrabbits responded with another 10-0 scoring burst before the 10-minute mark to build a 22-9 advantage. Though the scoring slowed the rest of the half, State maintained control and carried a 37-25 lead into the locker room.

    That style of play continued in the second half, as the Jackrabbits held on to a comfortable lead throughout. USD cut it to eight (41-33) with 15 minutes to play before a Daum layup sparked the Jacks on a spurt of 12 unanswered to make it a 20-point game (51-31) at 12:07. 

    State led by as many as 25 in the contest en route to their fourth-straight victory over rival South Dakota.

    Game Notes

    • South Dakota State is 129-94-1 all-time against South Dakota. The Jackrabbits picked up their first win in Vermillion since the 2015-16 season.
    • The Jackrabbits picked up a point in the South Dakota Corn Showdown Series and now leads the 2018-19 competition with USD, 6-5.
    • SDSU held USD to 25 first-half points, marking the second time this season the Jacks have allowed 25 or fewer in the opening half. They also did it against Northern Iowa on Dec. 1.
    • Tevin King has scored in double figures in eight consecutive games.
    • Skyler Flatten scored 20 (or more) for the fifth time this season.
    • David Jenkins now has 900 career points through 52 career performances and is on pace to join the 1,000-point club later this month.

    Up Next
    South Dakota State returns to Brookings next week for a pair of Summit League games, hosting Denver on Thursday and Oral Roberts Saturday. Tipoff against the Pioneers is set for 7 p.m.

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