Playing on their home courts, both South Dakota basketball teams shot better than 50 percent from the field while downing the Chadron State men in RMAC action last weekend.
South Dakota Mines hit 55.6 percent while posting a 66-52 verdict on Friday night and Black Hills State made 53.8 percent from the field to win 76-63 on Saturday night.
The setbacks dropped the Eagles to 3-9 overall and 1-5 in the conference at the Christmas break, which is about the halfway point in the season. CSC’s next games will be Dec. 29 and 30 at Fort Lewis and Adams State in southwestern Colorado.
Eagles’ coach Houston Reed said Monday the opponents’ hot shooting was combined by the Eagles’ offensive struggles during the trip to the north.
“We played pretty good defense, but had trouble scoring,” Reed said. “We couldn’t put the ball in the hole. Some of our guys aren’t in rhythm on their shots and aren’t playing up to their potential. I think a break will be good for us.”
The coach added that several Eagles are nursing injuries and hopefully will be able to rebound from them during the next two weeks. Among them is Dru Kuxhausen, who was unable to play in either game last weekend because of the hip injury he sustained against Metro State on Dec. 9 after pouring in 28 points in the game.
Mines led 29-24 at halftime and Black Hills was ahead 38-31 at intermission and both maintained the leads the rest of the way.
Despite turning the ball over 19 times, five more than the Hardrockers, the Eagles took 58 shots compared to Mines 45 on Friday night, but CSC shot just 35.8 percent from the field. Both teams made 11 free throws.
Reed said nine of his team’s turnovers were on traveling calls.
Jacob Anastasi, a 6-4 junior, led Mines with 15 points while freshman Tom Brady added 13. Both were five of seven from the field. The Eagles’ only double-figure scorer was Alliance native Jordan Mills with 10. CSC’s only senior, Matt Reader, chipped in nine points and also claimed six rebounds.
After being edged by Regis 84-82 on Saturday night, the Hardrockers are 6-5 overall and 3-3 in the conference.
Black Hills, which shaded Regis 75-74 on Friday night, is now 6-4 for the season and 3-3 in league play. The Yellow Jackets were paced by 6-6 Fraser Malcolm with 21 points. MaKaleb McInnis added 14 and Patrick Mendes 13. The trio made 19 of their 27 shots from the field.
The Eagles, who shot 40.7 percent from the field versus the Yellow Jackets, were led by Jeremy Ruffin with 13 points and a game-high eight rebounds. Freshman Eric Jammerman added 10 points and point guard Jaisean Jackson eight, to go with six assists.
Jackson had no turnovers at Black Hills and the team only six, less than one-third the total from the previous night.
South Dakota Mines 66, Chadron State 52
Chadron State—Jordan Mills 10, Matt Reader 9, Vonsinh Sayaloune 8, Jaisean Jackson 7, Leigh Saffin 5, Jeremy Ruffin 4, Michael Johnson 4, Walker Andrew 4, Adoum Mbang 1. Totals: 19-53 (3-10) 11-16 52 points, 29 rebounds, 19 turnovers.
S.D. Mines—Jacob Anastasi 15, Troy Brady 13, Logan Elers 11, Jack Fiddler 9, Jake Heath 7, Wilfred Dickson 6, Brian Orr 4, Isaac Kortemeyer 1. Totals: 25-45 (5-11) 11-15 66 points, 23 rebounds, 14 turnovers.
Chadron State 24 28 ----52
S.D. Mines 29 37 ----66
3-pointers: CSC—Sayaloune 2, Saffin 1. SDM—Brady 3, Heath 1, Anastasi 1.
Black Hills State 76, Chadron State 63
Chadron State—Jeremy Ruffin 13, Eric Jamerman 10, Jaisean Jackson 8, Vonsinh Sayaloune 7, Aboum Mbang 6, Michael Johnson 5, Jordan Mills 4, Matt Reader 4, Walker Andrew 3, Leigh Saffin 3. Totals: 24-59 (4-13) 11-17 63 points, 31 rebounds, 6 turnovers.
Black Hills State—Fraser Malcolm 21, Makaleb McInnis 14, Patrick Mendes 13, Stevan Desnica 7, Connor O’Hearn 7, Antonio Capley 6, Wyatt Krogman 5, Zach McLemore 3. Totals: 28-52 (5-15) 15-20 76 points, 32 rebounds, 7 turnovers.
Chadron State 31 32 ----63
Black Hills State 38 38 ----76
3-pointers: CSC—Jamerman 2, Sayaloune 1, Saffin 1. BHS—McInnis 2, Malcolm, Mendes, McLemore, all 1.