SIOUX FALLS, SD — Thanksgiving weekend offers Summit League men’s basketball fans plenty of opportunities to see their favorite teams in action, but before we get to Turkey Day, Kansas City and South Dakota have positioned themselves for the chance to win a trophy in multi-team events to complete heave Wednesday.
The Roos inflicted losses on two teams ranked in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 at the Gulf Coast Showcase and will seek to win the teams title in a matchup against Florida Gulf Coast at 7:30 p.m. ET on FloSports. The Coyotes are battling for the Palms Division title at the Fort Myers Tip-Off after beating Long Island in the semifinals on Tuesday.
The Summit League teams are currently tied 6-0 at the start of the season on neutral spots, which bodes well for the Roos and Coyotes. Two of those victories came in Missoula, Mont., where St. Thomas defeated Troy on Summer and Merrimack to cap the three-day event hosted by Montana.
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DENVER PIONEERS (3-1; 0-0 SL) | @DU_MensHoops
Next up: vs. IUPUI (11/23; 2 p.m. CT, New Orleans, La.); vs. The Citadel (11/24; 4pm CT); in New Orleans (11/25; 2pm CT)
Previous games: State of Sacramento (L, 73-69), State of Idaho (W, 70-69)
The Pioneers are taking the momentum of a stunning win over Idaho State into the Big Easy MTE over Thanksgiving weekend…Tommy Bruner delivered the game-winning treble in DU’s 70-69 win over Idaho State…Bruner finished with 10 points , while Tevin Smith added a game-high 21 in the win that gave the Pios their first 3-1 start since the 2015-16 season…DU are now 2-1 against Big Sky to start the season.. Next up is a duel with former Summit League member IUPUI in New Orleans to begin a three-game-in-three-day stretch in the Big Easy…Smith averages a team-best 14.5 ppg while teammates Tyree Corbett (8.5 rpg) and Touko Tainamo (8.3 rpg) rank first in the league in rebounding.
KANSAS CITY ROOS (3-4, 0-0SL) | @KCRoosMBB
Next up: vs. Florida Gulf Coast (11/23; 7:30 p.m. ET, Estero, Florida); SIUE (11/26; 7pm CT)
Previous games: against Toledo (W, 83-71); vs. Indiana State (W, 63-61)
The Roos reached the Gulf Coast Showcase title game thanks to two victories over teams ranked in CollegeInsider.com’s Mid-Major Top 25… After going scoreless against Kansas State, grad student RayQuawndis Mitchell broke to a career-high 35 points leading the Roos past fifth-place Toledo, 83-71 in a quarterfinal match… The Illinois transfer to Chicago then added 18 points and Shemarri Allen scored a game-high 22 points in a 63-61 win over 24th place -Ranked Indiana State…Allen (16.7 ppg; 1st) and Mitchell (14.9 ppg; 5th) are both among the top five scorers in the league through the first two weeks of the season…Kansas City will watch win a trophy against the Florida Gulf Coast.
NORTH DAKOTA FIGHTING HAWKS (3-3; 0-0SL) | @UNDMBasketball
Next up: Utah Tech (11/25; 1pm CT); Cal State Fullerton (11/27; 1pm CT)
Previous games: State of Montana (L, 81-71); Wisconsin stout (W, 92-61)
The Fighting Hawks went 3-3 on the season with a 92-61 win over Wisconsin-Stout… Freshman BJ Omot led a group of 10 Fighting Hawks with his best performance of his freshman collegiate season the score came in at 18 points…Omot wasn’t the only rookie to hit a season-best as his classmates Treysen Eaglestaff (17) and A’jahni Levias (15) also pulled that trick in defeating the Blue Devils… Omot is the lone Fighting Hawk who is averaging double digits in six games (12.3 ppg), while Eaglestaff has been in double digits in three straight off the bench to take his season average to 8.3 ppg…AND finishes a four game -Homestand after Thanksgiving with clashes against Utah Tech and Cal-State Fullerton.
NORTH DAKOTA STATE BISON (1-4; 0-0 SL) | @NDSUMBB
Next up: vs. Northern Colorado (11/25; 7:30 p.m. MT, Albuquerque, NM); in New Mexico (11/26; 5 p.m. MT); vs. Jacksonville State (11/27; 3 p.m. MT)
Previous game: in the state of Indiana (L, 101-75); Crown College (W, 76-55)
The Bison grabbed a four-game sled to open the season by beating Crown 76-55 at home last Sunday against Northern Colorado on Nov. 25…Andrew Miller posted a season-high 23 points and scored one A career-high 14 rebounds to record the first double-double of his career… In five games, Miller leads the team in scoring (13.2 ppg) and rebounds (8.2 rpg) while Grant Nelson is second in both categories (12.8 ppg/8.0 rpg) … Alongside the Bears, the Bison will face off against New Mexico and Jacksonville State in the Lobo Classic.
OMAHA MAVERICKS (1-4; 0-14SL) | @OmahaMBB
Next up: vs. Louisiana-Monroe (11/25; 1:30 p.m., Niceville, Florida); vs. TBA (11/26; TBA, Niceville, Florida)
Previous games: Ball State (L, 71-61); in Iowa (L, 100-64)
Jaeden Marshall led a group of 11 different Mavericks who scored nine points in a 100-64 loss in Iowa…Omaha went 25-49 into the arc but hit only 3-14 from deep against the Hawkeyes…Marshall JUCO transfer from Bosier Parish Community College, has started all five games in his freshman season with Omah and is averaging 9.4 ppg… The Mavericks will look to recover in the opening game of the Emerald against Louisiana Monroe Coast Classic on Friday, May November 25, which also includes a matchup between Southern and Loyola (Md.)… The winners of those two games will play in Saturday’s title game.
ORAL ROBERTS GOLDEN EAGLE (3-3; 0-0 SL) | @ORUMBB
Next up: Rogers State (11/27; 4pm CT); Ozark Christian (11/29; 7pm CT)
Previous game: Oklahoma Baptist (W, 98-86); in the state of Utah (L, 95-85)
The Golden Eagles started undefeated Utah State Tuesday, but the Aggies finished the game with an 18-8 run over the final 2:57 after ORU equalized 77-77…Isaac McBride hit five goldens Eagle starter in double digits with 19 points while Connor Vanover had a double-double with 18 points and 12 rebounds…Vanover has hit double digits in his first six tilts for ORU since moving from Arkansas…The 7-foot 3 forward leads the team with 14.2 ppg and his 27 total blocks is the most in Division I (next closest player has 20)…McBride and Max Abmas share the team lead with 15 triples made, while ORU with 70 overall a team takes third place.
ST. THOMAS TOMMIES (4-2; 0-0SL) | @TommieMBBall
Next up: in Milwaukee (11/23; 2pm CT); in Utah (11/26; 7pm CT)
Previous games: in Montana (L, 78-59); against Troy (W, 78-76); vs. Merrimack (W, 72-61)
The Tommies finished the Zootown Classic with two wins after losing their opening game to host Montana… Graduate student Riley Miller was named to the All-Tournament Team after averaging 16.7 ppg over the three games in Missoula and had scored 13 triples… He buried a career-high nine and lost 28 points in the Merrimack win… The first Treasure State win was an exciting one as freshman Andrew Rohde defeated the buzzer with a floater in the suit, who brought the Tommies to 78-. 76 victory over Troy… Rohde saw a stretch of five straight games end in double figures against Merrimack, but the rookie is averaging 13.5 ppg, the highest among any newcomers to the league.
SOUTH DAKOTA COYOTES (3-2; 0-0SL) | @SDCoyotesMBB
Next up: vs. Sam Houston (11/23; 2:30 p.m. ET); in Coastal Carolina (11/26; 12 p.m. ET)
Previous game: in the state of Mississippi (L, 79-42); vs. LIU (W, 68-58)
The Coyotes reached the Palms Division title game at Rocket Mortage Fort Myers Tip-Off with a 68-58 win over LIU… USD used a 14-0 run late in the second half to push past the Sharks and his third to win Game of the Season…Mason Archambault led with a season-high 19 points after scoring just 16 points in the Coyotes’ first four games of the season…He made All-Summit en route to the second-team averaging 14.5 ppg league honors in 2021-22… Damani Hayes hit a career-high 14 rebounds, surpassing double digits in that category for the first time in his career… The Coyotes will face a Sam Houston club that on track for a 5-0 start and #10 in the latest College Insider Mid-Major Top 25 poll.
SOUTH DAKOTA STATE JACKRABBITS (2-3; 0-0SL) | @GoJacksMBB
Next up: vs. Valparaiso (11/25; 2:30 p.m. ET, Savannah, Georgia); vs. James Madison (11/26; 12 p.m. ET, Savannah, Georgia)
Previous games: in Arkansas (L, 71-56); Stephen F Austin (L, 93-82)
The Jackrabbits head to Georgia to face off against Valparaiso and James Madison as part of the Hostillo Community Classic… Sophomore Zeke Mayo had his best scoring game of the season against Stephen F. Austin, but his 24 points weren’t enough to earn the Pushing Jackrabbits past the Lumberjacks…Mayo’s 24 points matched his total from the previous three games of SDSU…Charley Easley added a career-high 22 points as the Jackrabbits found their reach from beyond the arc and in their first Action 15 of 28 scored at Frost Arena this season… SDSU topped the DI charts a year ago by 3 point percentage but started the season just 17 to 65 (26.2)…Matt Mims contributes from long range, making 7-of-15 (46.7 percent) and scoring 6.8 ppg off the bench.
WESTERN ILLINOIS LEATHER NECK (2-3; 0-0 SL) | @WIU_MensHoops
Next up: Youngstown State (11/26; 2pm CT); Southern Indiana (11/30; 7:30 PM CT)
Previous games: at DePaul (L, 86-74); at UCF (L, 70-37); at UTRGV (L, 78-77)
The Leathernecks fought back from a nine-point deficit in the second half to take a late lead against UTRGV, but the Vaqueros hung up at the last second to walk away in a 78-77 win… Alec Rossner recovered going from a one-point finish at UCF to eclipsing the 20-point barrier for the second time this season and finishing with 23 against the Vaqueros… Rosner is pace WIU at 15.4 ppg in five games , which ranks second among league players…Point guard Trenton Massner returned to the lineup after missing the tilt against the Golden Knights…Massner had 12 points and continues to accelerate the league in assists ( 6.0/g)… Newcomers Jesiah West (10.4 ppg) and Quinlan Bennett (10.2 ppg) are both averaging double digits and have started all five games for head coach Rob Jeter.