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The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Saturday, February 9, 6:15 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Swinney Recreation Center (2,000) -- Kansas City, Missouri. Television: KSMO-TV. Home Record: South Dakota 5-5. UMKC 1-9. Away Record: South Dakota 2-10, UMKC 3-8. Neutral Record: South Dakota 1-1, UMKC 2-1. Conference Record: South Dakota 4-7, UMKC 3-8. Series Record: South Dakota leads, 2-1.
GAMES NOTES: After stepping out of conference play the UMKC Kangaroos begin a three-game homestand and get back to their Summit League schedule against the South Dakota Coyotes at Swinney Recreation Center on Saturday.
The Coyotes are carrying a three-game losing streak into this contest. The most recent setback was a 65-46 rout at the hands of North Dakota State which was also the fifth loss in the last six games for South Dakota. On the year South Dakota is just 8-15 overall with a record of 4-7 against league foes. This game wraps up a three-game road trip for South Dakota which is 2-10 in its previous away contests. The Coyotes will host Oakland next.
In a non-conference diversion on Wednesday UMKC was routed, 66-45, by Houston Baptist to close out a three-game road trip. The loss was the fifth straight for the Kangaroos who are a miserable 6-19 overall this season while just 3-8 in Summit League play. Returning home might not exactly help as the Kangaroos have just a single win in 10 tries at Swinney Recreation Center this season. In the second game of the homestand UMKC will take on IUPU-Ft. Wayne.
This is just the fourth all-time meeting between these squads, with all previous matchups occurring either this season or last. The most recent matchup ended in a 90-86 win for UMKC after South Dakota won both meetings a year ago.
After managing only 15 points on seven field goals and 35 percent shooting in the first half against North Dakota State, South Dakota didn't fare much better in the second half, hitting just 43.5 percent of its shot attempts. Meanwhile the Coyotes allowed the Bison to shoot 51 percent from the field and record 17 points off turnovers.
The offensive struggles against North Dakota State were unprecedented for South Dakota. On the season the Coyotes have rarely had much issue putting up points as they rank third in the Summit League in scoring (71.2 ppg), shooting just a shade under 45 percent from the field. Where the weakness has generally been is the defensive end, as the Coyotes are letting up 75.2 points per game on 45.8 percent shooting. Juevol Myles (15.2 ppg) is shooting just 38.2 percent from the field but is still ranked among the five top scorers in the conference. Adding further depth are Trevor Gruis (11.3 ppg, 5.9 rpg) and Brandon Bos (10.6 ppg).
UMKC also had a real tough time getting into a rhythm last time out. The Kangaroos managed to shoot just 31.3 percent from the field, including a 3- of-16 showing from 3-point range. in the loss to Houston Baptist. The Kangaroos also turned the ball over 23 times while assisting on just nine field goals.
Both ends of the floor have presented major problems for UMKC. The Kangaroos are the lowest scoring (60.7 ppg), shooting (.417 FG percentage) and assisting (9.5 pg) team in the Summit League. The struggles on offense have been compounded by UMKC's lack of defensive production as the Kangaroos are allowing teams to shoot 48 percent from the field and put up 72.1 points per game. Estan Tyler (11.1 ppg) and Thomas Staton (10.2 ppg) are not only the only double-figure scorers on the roster, but the only ones putting up more than seven points per game.
Neither of these teams looks to be en route to making much noise in the conference title chase. UMKC was able to pull out a win on the road last time and may be able to replicate the effort on its home floor.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: UMKC 70, South Dakota 67
02/09 10:32:48 ET
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