Winning is becoming more and more of a common theme for the University of South Dakota women’s basketball team.
Coming off one of the biggest wins since moving to Division I, USD is looking to extend its 8-game winning streak on Feb. 18 against Indiana-University Purdue-University Indianapolis.
On Feb. 13 the Lady Coyotes pulled off a 59-53 overtime-upset victory over rival South Dakota State University. The impressive comeback win over SDSU improved the Coyotes, record to 18-6 overall and 9-5 in the conference.
Head coach Ryun Williams said the team battled the entire game in order to pull off the victory.
“We kept our poise throughout the game,” Williams said. “We played great defense, made our shots and had some players make little runs at the end of the game.”
A 9-0 run in the last two minutes of regulation allowed the Coyotes to tie the game up at 49 and force overtime, where USD took over.
After a successful four-game home stand the Coyotes will take their winning streak on the road at IUPUI. Some teams will find it hard to refocus after coming off such a big win, however, Williams said that won’t be the case for this team.
“We have such a high maturity level and strong leadership on this team,” Williams said. “Our team follows our motto ‘Onwards’ really well. We know how to keep up the hard work and how to keep ourselves focused for the next game.”
The Coyotes will face two tough road contests this week starting with IUPUI, who USD beat 73-65 on Jan. 23, and ending with a game at Western Illinois. USD only has five games left on their schedule with the final three being at the DakotaDome. Williams said the team will continue to do what they have been doing all year and take each game one at a time.
“We are focused on IUPUI right now,” Williams said. “All we’re concerned with is playing good basketball on Saturday in order to put us in a position to keep winning.”
A big part of the Coyotes’ success this season has been credit to the team’s tough defense. The Coyote defense leads the Summit League in opponents’ field goal percentage.
USD isn’t eligible to play in the Summit League tournament or the NCAA Tournament at the end of the season but there is still a way for the Coyotes to play postseason basketball this year. USD still has a chance to receive a bid to play in the Womens National Invitation Tournament and the end of season.