March 2, 2014
THIS WEEK: The Dakota State University men's basketball team (15-14 overall record, 6-2 North Star Athletic Association conference record) prepares to play in the first-ever North Star Athletic Association Postseason Tournament's championship game on Monday evening. The Trojans, No. 2 seed in the postseason conference tournament, visits the top-seeded Jamestown (N.D.) (16-12, 7-1 NSAA) at the Civic Center. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. in Jamestown, N.D.
THREE IN A ROW CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME: Dakota State will be making their third straight appearance in the conference tournament's championship game on Monday night. It will be the third straight year that both the Trojans and Jamestown (N.D.) had met in the conference championship game, the first conference championship game in the North Star. DSU defeated the Jimmies in the Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.) Division II Men's Basketball championship game in 2012 by the score of 80-71 in Madison, S.D. The Trojans again defeated UJ in 2013 A.I.I. Division II Men's Basketball Conference Tournament Championship Game after rallying back from double-digit deficit for a 78-76 victory in Jamestown, N.D. Dakota State had won back-to-back conference tournament's championship game for the first time in school history.
NSAA POSTSEASON SEMIFINALS RECAP: The Trojans won their first-ever North Star Athletic Association postseason game on March 1 at the DSU Fieldhouse. DSU fell behind early in the game, but closed the first-half with a 31-14 scoring run to earn a 37-30 lead over third-seeded Valley City State (N.D.). Dakota State maintained control in the second-half by maintaining a double-digit lead and defeated the Vikings by the score of 74-56. DSU defeated VCSU for the third straight year in the conference postseason tournament's semifinals (last two seasons in the A.I.I. conference tournament's semifinals). Jamestown (N.D.) erased a 14-point deficit late in the first-half and rallied back for an 83-72 victory over fourth-seeded Presentation (S.D.) at the Civic Center. The Jimmies fell behind by the score of 35-21 with 31 seconds left in the first-half. Trailing by one point with less than five minutes, UJ closed the game with a 20-8 closing run to secure the victory.
SIX STRAIGHT CONFERENCE POSTSEASON VICTORY: Dakota State won their sixth straight conference postseason game after a 74-56 victory over Valley City State (N.D.) on March 1. The Trojans won two games in the A.I.I. Division II Men's Basketball Conference Postseason Tournament in 2012 (won championship) and three games in 2013 A.I.I. conference tournament (won championship). DSU had won eight games in the last 10 postseason games (won two games in the 2013 NAIA Division II Men's Basketball National Tournament in Point Lookout, Mo.).
FIFTH CONSECUTIVE HOME WINNING RECORD: The Trojans finished their 2013-14 home schedule with an impressive 11-3 record at DSU Fieldhouse. It marked the fifth straight year that Dakota State had recorded a winning home record. The Trojans are combined 21-5 record (DSU was 10-2 home record in 2012-13 season) at the DSU Fieldhouse in the last two seasons, an 80.8 winning percentage.
TROJANS FINISH SEASON STRONG: Dakota State is currently on a five-game winning streak, their longest winning streak this season. The Trojans had won eight games in the last 11 games, including six straight victories at the DSU Fieldhouse. Dakota State had won the last two road games (defeated at Presentation, S.D. on Feb. 8 and at Mayville State, N.D. on Feb. 19).
DSU-UJ SEASON SERIES RECAP: Jamestown (N.D.) and Dakota State (S.D.) split their two North Star Athletic Association conference meetings this season, with each team winning on its home court. The Jimmies won the first meeting on Feb. 5 in Jamestown, N.D. by the score of 80-69. DSU won the second meeting of the season in an overtime thriller at the DSU Fieldhouse in Madison. The Trojans outscored the Jimmies 23-15 in overtime to earn a 96-88 victory, handing UJ's first NSAA conference loss and ended their 10-game winning streak.
ONE SHY FOR TRIPLE-DOUBLE: For the second time in the last three games, Cameron Robinson was just one point, rebound and/or assist shy for recording a triple-double in the game. He scored 9 points, earned 9 rebounds and dished out 10 assists in 78-65 road victory at Mayville State (N.D.) on Feb. 19. Robinson had 10 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists in 74-56 victory over Valley City State (N.D.) on March 1.
TROJANS LEAD NSAA CONFERENCE: Four different Trojan men's basketball players lead the North Star Athletic Association in five different categories. Dylan Hale leads the Trojans with 18.0 points per game and shoots 42.3 percent from the field. Yusuf Vinson records 228 total rebounds and averages 8.7 rebounds per game. Cameron Robinson leads the NSAA conference with 133 assists (5.3 assists per game—ranks 15th in the nation). He stole the ball 49 times this season and averaged 2.0 steals this season. Miguel Sansavour ranks third in the nation in blocks per game (2.3) and 9th in total blocks with 53. The Trojans lead the NSAA conference in field goal percentage defense (40.1 percent).
DSU DEFENSE NATIONAL RANKS: According to the NAIA-DakStats statistical website as of Sunday evening, Dakota State is second in the nation in defensive rebounds per game with an average of 30.1 rebounds per game. The Trojans are fifth in the nation in field goal percentage defense (40.1 percent) and 19th in 3-point field goal percentage defense (31.6 percent). DSU is 22nd in the nation in blocks per game (3.7), 24th in total blocks (107) and 34th in scoring defense per game (72.0 points per game allowed). The Trojans averaged 7.5 steals per game, which is 40th-best in the nation.
DRAINING 3s: Dakota State ranks 38th in the nation in total 3-pointers made per game with an average of 7.4 per game. The Trojans accumulated a total of 216 3-pointers this season, which is 46th-best in the nation. Dylan Hale ranks eighth in the nation in 3-point field goals made per game (3.1) and 12th in total 3-point field goals made with 85 3-pointers. His 85 3-pointers this season is the fourth-best in the Trojan men's basketball record book for most 3-pointers in a single season.
WATCH IT: Jamestown (N.D.) will be providing a paid live video broadcast for the Trojan men's basketball game Jamestown on Monday evening. The video webcast can be found on http://www.americaonesports.com/partner_members.asp?id=68. The links are also available on www.dsuathletics.com in the rotating/scrolling calendar of events under the news articles.
LIVE STATS/PLAY-BY-PLAY: Jamestown (N.D.) will have live stats/play-by-play for the game on Monday evening. Check on http://www.dakstats.com/WebSync/Pages/Team/TeamPage.aspx?association=10&sg=MBB&sea=NAIMBB_2013&team=507 and click on the letter 'W' to view the live stats/play-by-play. The links are also available on www.dsuathletics.com in the rotating/scrolling calendar of events under the news articles.
STAY CONNECTED: Stay connected with Dakota State men's basketball and athletics all season long on www.dsuathletics.com. The Trojans are also on Twitter, just log onto www.twitter.com/GoDaSUAthletics. The Dakota State University Athletics group page can be found on Facebook on https://www.facebook.com/DSUTrojanAthletics.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director