South Dakota State 80, Fort Wayne 74
FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) - Nate Wolters scored a school-record 53 points and broke another mark with nine 3-pointers as South Dakota State defeated Fort Wayne 80-74 Thursday night.
Wolters' point total is the highest this season by a Division I player, bettering a 47-point performance by Oakland's Travis Bader on Jan. 24 against IUPUI. He broke Dave Thomas' school record of 44 points (March 10, 1973 vs. Coe College) and Randy Suarez's mark of eight 3-pointers (Feb. 7, 1987 vs. Augustana).
Wolters was 9 for 14 from beyond the arc, 17 for 28 overall and 10 for 11 at the free-throw line. He scored 38 of his points in the second half, helping South Dakota State (19-6, 10-2 Summit) shoot 64 percent from the floor and overcome an 11-point deficit.
"They were sagging off of me and my shot felt pretty good tonight," Wolters said. "I was able to knock a couple down and just got into a little bit of a rhythm.
"It's a good accomplishment, but it's a big win for us. We had to have it. ... They played tough, but we were able to put together a big second half and pull away."
Wolters' 3-pointer with 1:47 remaining gave the Jackrabbits their first lead of the half, 70-68, and helped them finish the game on a 13-6 run. He added his sixth 3-pointer of the second half with 58 seconds remaining to put South Dakota State ahead 73-69 and hit 5 of 6 free throws in the final 90 seconds.
"What happened tonight is the result of a lot of time in the gym for Nate, and sometimes kids get in a zone, they feel it, and it doesn't matter what they do, you can't stop them," South Dakota State coach Scott Nagy said. "That was the case tonight, and Nate knew it, the players knew it, I knew it."
Frank Gaines led Fort Wayne (10-15, 3-8) with 29 points, and Luis Jacobo had 14. The Mastadons lost despite hitting 9 of 20 3-point attempts and outrebounding the Jackrabbits 37-29.
The 53-point performance is the third-highest in Summit League history, trailing only North Dakota State's Ben Woodside (60 vs. Stephen F. Austin, Dec. 12, 2008) and Kansas City's Michael Watson (54 vs. Oral Roberts, Feb. 22, 2003).
Oakland 66, North Dakota State 63
ROCHESTER, Mich. (AP) - Oakland coach Greg Kampe earned his 500th official victory Thursday night when the Golden Grizzlies outlasted North Dakota State 66-63.
Oakland (12-13, 7-4 Summit League) trailed 63-62 when Duke Mondy stole the ball from TrayVonn Wright and drove for the go-ahead basket with 20.2 seconds left. Mike Felt then missed an open 3-pointer for the Bison (18-6, 9-3), and although Wright rebounded, he fell down and was called for traveling.
Mondy made two free throws with 6.4 seconds remaining, and the Golden Grizzlies fouled intentionally to prevent a chance for a tying 3-pointer.
Kampe now has 500 victories according to NCAA records, although Oakland credits him with two more because of forfeits.
Western Illinois 68, Omaha 50
MACOMB, Ill. (AP) - Terell Parks had 12 points and 16 rebounds and Western Illinois scored the first 20 points of the game en route to a 68-50 victory over Omaha on Thursday night.
The Leathernecks (18-5, 10-2 Summit) hit 9 of 15 shots during the game-opening run and finished the half shooting 59 percent from the floor while taking a 35-15 lead into the break.
Omaha missed its first 14 shots and needed CJ Carter's half-court 3-pointer at the first-half buzzer just to pull within 20 points.Adam Link added 12 points and Don McAvoy had 11 for Western Illinois, which increased its lead to as many as 33 points in the second half.
Justin Simmons and Tyler Egli led Omaha (8-18, 5-8) with 10 points each. The Mavericks shot just 33 percent from the field, their second-lowest performance of the season.