The University of South Dakota women’s basketball team grabbed an early lead and didn’t look back as they battled the Kansas City Kangaroos Saturday afternoon.
The Coyotes faced the Kangaroos in the DakotaDome, taking the win with a score of 67-45.
The victory puts the team’s record at 12-12 overall in the season and 7-4 in the Summit League Conference, as they prepare for a long road stretch.
“We are looking to be road warriors again,” head coach Amy Williams said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to steal a couple wins on the road.”
The Coyotes took the lead early in the first half with a three pointer from senior Tempestt Wilson, which started a 7-0 run for the team. USD came out fighting the rest of game, which lead to early foul trouble.
At the 12:16 minute mark, Polly Harrington and the Roo’s Eilise O’Connor received off setting technical fouls, sending the Coyotes on 10-0 run. The team went into the locker room with a 16-point advantage of 32-16 at the half.
Margaret McCloud scored seven points for USD in the first half and had two assists. Wilson, Lisa Loeffler and Heidi Hoff each added six points for the Coyotes. Nicole Seekamp and Alexis Yackley each recorded two steals for the team.
Hailey Houser scored four points for Kansas City, with Emile Blakesley adding three points and two rebounds.
Wilson started off the second half with another three-point shot, which helped continue USD’s momentum. South Dakota’s lead was never less than 15 the entire second half, which was huge for the Coyotes both offensively and defensively, causing 18 total turnovers in the game.
Wilson led scoring for the Coyotes with 18 total points, while McCloud added 13 points and grabbed five rebounds. Hoff scored 11 points for the team and seven rebounds.
O’Connor was the leading scorer for the Kangaroos with 17 total points, as well as two steals and three assists. Houser added eight points and three assists.
Hoff said one of the keys to the victory was the team’s energy, which was lacking last time they played Kansas City.
“Our energy level was there, even on our bench,” she said. “Our energy was a huge help.”
The women’s team will now head to Rochester, Mich. to begin their pair of road games Feb. 14.