SDSU & USD Top Seeds In Summit Men’s & Women’s Basketball Tournaments
All Four Local Teams Will Play On Saturday
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - A Summit League Tournament unlike any other in the conference or Sioux Falls’ history is set to begin.
The final weekend of play in the conference set the brackets for next week, with South Dakota State and South Dakota claiming the number one and two seeds respectively in both the men’s and women’s tournament. That means all four teams will play when the quarterfinals tip off at the Sanford Pentagon on Saturday, March 6th.
This will mark the Summit League Tournament’s first time at the Sanford Pentagon after previously being held at the Denny Sanford Premier Center since 2015 and at the Sioux Falls Arena from 2009-2014. The move is temporary in response to COVID-19 protocols which will not allow fans to attend, though player family members are expected to be allowed in.
2021 SUMMIT LEAGUE MEN’S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT
With the regular season conference race coming down to the final day of play on Sunday, South Dakota State claimed the regular season Summit League title by virtue of a .750 winning percentage (9-3 in league play) to .733 winning percentage of second place South Dakota (11-4). Winning percentage was the deciding factor this year due to teams playing differing amounts of games because of COVID-19 related cancellations.
The Jackrabbits will open the men’s tournament on Saturday at 5:45 PM against #8 seed Nebraska-Omaha. The two teams did not meet during the regular season as their scheduled series in Omaha January 15 & 16 was cancelled due the host Mavericks dealing with COVID-19 issues. SDSU has struggled in the first round of late, losing in each of the last two tournaments as the top and second seed coming in.
Following the SDSU-UNO game the second seed Coyotes take the Pentagon floor against Western Illinois at 8:45 PM. The Coyotes swept the Leathernecks in their series in Macomb, winning 65-60 on January 22nd and 84-74 the following day.
Two more quarterfinals will be held on Sunday. Semifinal play will be on Monday at 5:45 PM and 8:45 PM. The men’s tournament championship will be Tuesday, March 9th at 8:00 PM.
For more information you can view the Summit League’s Men’s Basketball Championship page HERE .
2021 SUMMIT LEAGUE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT
As in the men’s tournament, South Dakota State and South Dakota are the one and two seeds respectively, though there was a more significant gap between those two and the rest of the conference. SDSU finish 14-0 in league play while USD went 12-2 with their lone losses happening in Brookings Feb. 5 & 6. Third place North Dakota State had seven league losses.
The Jackrabbits and Coyotes, each projected by most analysts to both make the NCAA Tournament, have met in seven of the last eight Summit League Tournaments. Six of those meetings have been in the championship game. Though the Jackrabbits won the first five championship game meetings (2013, 2015, 2016, 2018 & 2019) the Coyotes won last year’s final 63-58. Their other meeting came in the 2014 semifinals when USD defeated SDSU in the semifinals before defeating the University of Denver in the championship.
The Jackrabbits will open the entire tournament at 11:45 AM on Saturday morning against Nebraska-Omaha in a mirror of the men’s matchup. Unlike the men, however, the SDSU women were able to play their January 15 & 16 series at Omaha. SDSU swept the Mavericks with 62-50 and 64-54 victories.
The Coyotes will follow the SDSU-UNO game at 2:45 PM against Oral Roberts. The two teams met just last weekend in Vermillion with the Coyotes winning by near identical scores of 77-54 and 76-54.
Two more quarterfinals will be held on Sunday. Semifinal play will be on Monday at 11:45 AM and 2:45 PM. The men’s tournament championship will be Tuesday, March 9th at 1:00 PM.
For more information you can view the Summit League’s Women’s Basketball Championship page by clicking HERE .
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