Summit title in reach for SDSU women

Chris Mangan

Chris Mangan

The SDSU women’s basketball team will try to become the first number one seed to win the Summit League Tournament since Youngstown State in 1998.

The Summit League teams take the floor of the Sioux Falls Arena starting on March 7, with the championship game taking place on March 10 at 3 p.m. and airing on ESPNU.

The Jacks (28-2, 17-1) will face Oral Roberts (13-16, 6-12) in the first game of the tournament March 7 at noon. The Jacks are riding a 14-game winning streak heading into the tournament that included a 71-64 victory over Oral Roberts on March 2 that clinched the outright regular season title and top seed in the tournament.

Oral Roberts is the two-time defending champion and has won the title in three of the last four years. The Golden Eagles will have a tough road ahead of them, though, as an eight seed has never advanced past the first round.

The nationally ranked Jacks are the heavy favorite to win the title and advance to the NCAA Women’s Tournament in their first appearance in postseason play, but Oakland, Oral Roberts, IUPUI and North Dakota State could all provide a challenge for SDSU, as they are the only ones to stay within 20 points of the Jacks.

Oakland goes into the tournament as the number two seed and the only Summit League team to beat the Jackrabbits this year; the Golden Grizzlies square off against UMKC in the second game on March 7.

The winners of the SDSU-ORU and OU-UMKC games will receive a day off on March 8 before returning to action on March 9.

The other four teams will be in action on March 8 when IUPUI faces IPFW at noon in the four versus five match-up. North Dakota State goes in as the three seed and will face Western Illinois immediately following the IUPUI-IPFW matchup.

The Summit League tournament is in its first year in Sioux Falls. The city will also host the tournament next year.