WEEKLY NOTEBOOK: No. 3
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - South Dakota emerged as the only unbeaten Summit League squad through the opening two weeks of the season as the Coyotes have reeled off five-straight wins with a Friday night date at Arkansas looming. One of the biggest reasons for USD's success early on has been the proficient 3-point shooting by a pair of veterans. Senior Tyler Hagedorn leads the nation in 3-point field goal percentage having knocked down 16 of 19 attempts (84.1) this season. Classmate Triston Simpson is shooting 62.5 percent from beyond the arc, which ranks second among league players. As a team, the Coyotes lead the country with a 51.1 percent clip.
The Coyotes are not the only Summit League team leading the country in NCAA statistics. Western Illinois has taken care of the basketball better than any team in the country, committing only 21 turnovers in three games and the Leathernecks are also the top free-throw shooting team in the country, making 85.1 percent of their tries.
SDSU PUTS THE SUMMIT LEAGUE UP 1-0 IN CHALLENGE WITH THE WAC
For the second-straight year, SDSU won its matchup in The Summit League/WAC Challenge. This time, it took double-overtime, but the Jackrabbits prevailed with a 93-91 victory over CSU Bakersfield on Nov. 9. JUCO All-American Douglas Wilson scored a game-high 26 points and added 13 rebounds to lead the Jacks. The next game in the challenge is set for this Saturday when Utah Valley visits NDSU.
UPCOMING IN THE SUMMIT LEAGUE
NOTING THE PIONEERS
• The Pioneers head to UC Riverside for a Saturday matchup, owning a 2-2 record after a 72-55 victory over Western State.
• Sophomore Jase Townsend registered the first double-double of his career in that win, posting career-highs of 21 points and 10 rebounds.
• Townsend is leading the Pios in scoring (12.3/g) and rebounding (5.8/g) in the early going.
• Ade Murkey, the lone senior on the roster, is the only other DU player averaging double figures. He's scoring 12.0 ppg and shares the team lead with in 3-pointers made with seven.
• Joseph Lanzi is the other Pioneer with seven makes from deep on only 13 attempts (53.8 percent).
• DU will stay in California after its tilt with UC Riverside for the Cable Car Classic (Nov. 27-30) hosted by Santa Clara.
NOTING THE FIGHTING HAWKS
• UND is in the midst of a four-game road swing that began last week with a 97-66 loss at No. 8 Gonzaga and a 74-60 setback at Valpo.
• The Fighting Hawks will wrap that stretch up, moving closer to home with games at Milwaukee (Tuesday) and Minnesota (Sunday).
• Senior Marlon Stewart (16.7/g), sophomore Filip Rebraca (15.7/g), and rookie De'Sean Allen-Eikens (15.3/g) are all averaging better than 15.0 ppg for first-year head coach Paul Sather.
• Stewart is leading the team in scoring while knocking down 60 percent of his 3-point attempts so far (6-for-10).
• Rebraca is one of two league players with a pair of double-doubles to his credit, including a 16-point, 13-rebound effort at Gonzaga. Allen-Eikens ranks second among league freshmen in scoring.
NOTING THE BISON
• The Bison took two of three in the Islander Invitational, opening the event with wins over UTRGV and host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi before falling to Stony Brook 74-67 in what ended up being the championship game. The Seawolves put that game away with a late 7-0 run.
• Junior forward Rocky Kreuser was named to the all-tournament team after averaging 10.0 ppg and 7.0 rpg while shooting 43 percent from beyond the arc.
• Seniors Vinnie Shahid and Tyson Ward share the scoring lead for NDSU as both are averaging 11.7 ppg (70 points). Shahid has hit nine 3-pointers, while Ward leads the team with 26 makes from the foul stripe.
• Cameron Hunter and Tyree Eady are two of the top-scoring reserves in the league as they are averaging 7.8 and 7.7 ppg, respectively.
NOTING THE MAVERICKS
• The Mavericks are playing three true road contests as part of the Cayman Islands Classic with an eight-day stretch.
• Omaha opened the Classic with an 80-65 loss to Colorado State and resumes play Tuesday at Dayton before concluding the trio of games Thursday at Washington State.
• K.J. Robinson, a double-digit scorer from a year ago, made his season debut against the Rams after missing the first three games. He came off the bench to produce five points and four rebounds in 21 minutes.
• Junior Matt Pile is nearly averaging a double-double in the early going, scoring 12.3 ppg while grabbing a league-best 9.8 rpg.
NOTING THE GOLDEN EAGLES
• The Golden Eagles are back home after dropping road tilts at Tulsa and Iowa in the last week.
• ORU boasts the league's top-scoring freshman as Max Abmas is pouring in 17.8 ppg, including a 25-point outing at Iowa.
• The Rockwall, Texas, native has had the green light from beyond the arc having attempted at least 10 triples in his first four collegiate games. Abmas leads the league in both 3-pointers made (16) and attempted (48).
• ORU has been one of the league's top rebounding teams in the early going (42.5/g; second), especially on the offensive glass (13.5/g; first). • The trio Emmanuel Nzekwesi (7.8/g), Kevin Obanor (7.3/g) and newcomer Elijah Lufile (7.0/g) are all averaging better than seven boards. Lufile is doing his damage on the glass from the bench in less than 20 minutes per game.
• The Golden Eagles return home to face Rogers State Tuesday before a road tilt at Wichita State on Saturday.
NOTING THE MASTODONS
• The Mastodons are one of two league teams with three players averaging 15.0 ppg or better through two weeks of play.
• Jarred Godfrey is pacing the team with a 16.4 ppg clip while Brian Patrick (15.6/g) and Matt Holba (15.2/g) round out that trio.
• Godfrey and Patrick both have a pair of 20-point games to their credit.
• The 'Dons picked up their first Division I win of the season with a 24-point rout of Stetson (79-55). Godfrey had a game-high 19 points in a win that saw Purdue Fort Wayne bury a season-high 16 3-pointers.
• Holba, who made 81 triples a year ago, went 5-for-9 from deep for his best effort in that category so far in 2019-20.
NOTING THE COYOTES
• The Coyotes' winning ways returned with them from Hawai'i as USD won its first two home contests to improve to 5-0 on the season.
• Senior Tyler Hagedorn scored a career-high 33 points on 8-of-8 shooting from beyond the arc (Summit League single-game record for most makes without a season) in a win over Texas Southern and made 12-consecutive triples over a span of three games before missing his second and final attempt in a win over SIUE that him post a double-double with 13 points and 14 rebounds.
• Hagedorn leads the league in scoring at 19.4 ppg and leads a trio of Coyotes averaging in double figures through five games. Preseason player of the Year Stanley Umude (16.8 ppg) and Triston Simpson (13.8 ppg) make up remaining two-thirds of that group.
NOTING THE JACKRABBITS
• After a 3-0 start to the Eric Henderson era, the Jackrabbits dropped a pair of road games at Power Six conference programs.
• JUCO transfer Douglas Wilson led the Jackrabbits in scoring in both of those losses with 15 points at USC and at Nebraska.
• A pair of Divison I transfers had their best games to date as Jackrabbits. David Wingett, who redshirted at Memphis last season, scored 10 points off the bench against the Trojans and Tray Buchanan, who spent his freshman season at North Dakota, scored a season-high 13 points against the Cornhuskers.
• SDSU returns home to play North Alabama Tuesday night before traveling to Arizona to play another Pac-12 program on Thursday.
NOTING THE LEATHERNECKS
• Turnovers and free-throw shooting have not been the problems for the Leathernecks during their 0-3 start. WIU has committed just 21 total miscues, which is the fewest in the NCAA Division I ranks. They are also making 85.1 percent of their foul shots, which is also tops in the nation entering the week.
• WIU's last two losses have come by single digits. Junior Kobe Webster scored a career-high 28 points in the latest setbacks - a 98-91 home loss home to Tennessee-Martin.
• Webster enters the week third in the league in scoring at 18.3 ppg and teammate Zion Young is fifth at 17.0 ppg.
• Sophomore Ben Pyle rounds out a trio of Leathernecks averaging in double figures, owning a 12.0 ppg clip.
• The Leathernecks continue a four-game homestand on Wednesday against Northern Illinois before wrapping up that stretch Saturday against Central Christian.