CSJ Summit League Men’s Hoops Preview & Review Feb. 4, 2020

South Dakota’s Tyler Hagedorn garnered his second #SummitMBB weekly award of the season, league officials announced Monday. Hagedorn averaged 23.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg and went 6-for-8 from 3-point range during road wins over Denver and Omaha last week. (Courtesy of USD Athletics)

The Summit League is starting to spread the top teams as we get now into the final half of the regular season schedule. South Dakota State continues to lead the standings after the Jackrabbits won two road games last week over Oral Roberts and Western Illinois.

North Dakota State sits a half game back after the Bison also won two road conference games over WIU and Purdue Fort Wayne.

South Dakota is just a game back in third in the standings currently after the Coyotes also won two road games this past week at Denver and my game of this week over Omaha (ending the Mavericks 16-game home winning streak).

This week Omaha plays the top two teams in the standings–first Wednesday at home versus NDSU and then on the road at SDSU Saturday. The Mavericks sit currently fourth in the Summit standings and this week could bunch the standings with wins or it could allow their two Dakota opponents to widen their lead. Those two games this week will be our two games of the week.

Here some highlights from Sunday’s wild contest in our game of the week in Omaha with USD winning a very closely contested game:

Below are the full standings coming into this week’s action:

Here are the full results from last week:

Wednesday, January 29
SDSU 76, Oral Roberts 61*

Thursday, January 30
South Dakota 93, Denver 87*
Purdue Fort Wayne 72, North Dakota 68*
NDSU 70, Western Illinois 49*

Saturday, February 1
NDSU 71, Purdue Fort Wayne 60*
SDSU 71, Western Illinois 61*
Oral Roberts 86, Denver 77*

Sunday, February 2
South Dakota 81, Omaha 80*

Here are this week’s games:

Tuesday, February 4
South Dakota vs Peru State 7:00 PM

Wednesday, February 5
Western Illinois at Purdue Fort Wayne* 7:00 PM
NDSU at Omaha* (YurView/MSN/E+) 7:00 PM

Thursday, February 6
Oral Roberts at North Dakota* (MSN/E+) 7:00 PM

Saturday, February 8
Oral Roberts at NDSU* (MSN2/E3) 1:00 PM
South Dakota at North Dakota* (MSN/E3) 2:00 PM
Purdue Fort Wayne at Denver* 3:30 PM
Omaha at SDSU* 4:15 PM
All times local to site

Game of the Week

North Dakota State at Omaha
When: Wednesday, Feb. 5, 7:00 PM CST
Where: Baxter Arena (7,898), Omaha, Neb.

The two teams met last in the Summit League Tournament Championship game in Sioux Falls last year. The Bison prevailed to win the league title 73-63 in the championship game of the Summit League Tournament on March 12 last season.

NDSU is coming off a 71-60 win at Purdue Fort Wayne last Saturday for its third straight victory. The Bison closed the game on a 26-8 run over the final 6:30, spurred by 14 points in that span from Cameron Hunter, who finished with 20. Vinnie Shahid led all players with 22 points and added six rebounds and three assists.

NDSU G Vinnie Shahid (Courtesy of NDSU Athletics)

Shahid has averaged a team-leading 17.3 points per game, which ranks fifth in the conference this season. 

Omaha saw a 14-point lead slip away Sunday afternoon, falling 81-80 to South Dakota at Baxter Arena. The loss snapped Omaha’s 16-game home win streak and was its first loss at home since Dec. 30, 2018.

Omaha G KJ Robinson (Courtesy of Omaha Athletics)

KJ Robinson led the way with 22 points on 8-of-14 shooting with four 3-pointers, adding five rebounds, three assists and three steals. Matt Pile just missed a double-double with 19 points and nine boards, finishing 8-of-12 from the field. Zach Thornhill and Ayo Akinwole matched each other with 10 points. Akinwole finished 8-of-9 at the stripe.

Omaha swept the regular-season series from NDSU last year, winning 90-77 at home on Jan. 2, 2019, then 58-50 on the road on Feb. 23, 2019, before falling.

NDSU leads the all-time series 49-33 in the series.

Fearless Prediction

Just like the game Omaha had against South Dakota, this game will come down to the wire. The guard play of Vinnie Shahid versus KJ Robinson will be the key match-up in this game.

The Bison will need to use their top defense to stop the high flying Mavericks offense.

Omaha will need to stop NDSU’s three point threat and keep the Bison off the free-throw line, where they lead the league in percentage.

This game is key for both teams–for Omaha to stay in the top half of the league standings and for NDSU to stay on par with leading South Dakota State.

Both teams will use this motivation to keep this game on one down to the wire. It is hard to believe that Omaha will lose two games at home in a row but NDSU did that to the Mavericks two years ago.

The Bison will do it one more time and stay on pace with SDSU. North Dakota State 75 Omaha 74