After dropping a nail-biter to Oklahoma in the season opener Nov. 9, the Coyote women’s basketball team split a pair of games against No. 1 South Carolina and Drake Friday and Monday.
The Coyotes fell to the Gamecocks 72-41 Friday night in the Sanford Pentagon in Sioux Falls. The game was a part of The Mammoth Sports Construction Invitational. The other game in the invitational was a 61-59 overtime victory for Arizona over Louisville.
The Coyotes didn’t score a point in the first six minutes of action against the nation’s top ranked team. After a quarter of play, the Gamecocks led USD 17-7. South Carolina continued to grow the lead in each quarter, outscoring the Coyotes by five, six and 10 points in the ensuing three quarters of action.
The Coyotes struggled to match up with South Carolina’s 6-5 Aliyah Boston and 6-7 Kamilla Cardoso. Boston and Cardoso tallied nine points each. The Gamecocks also rebounded USD 49-25.
Destanni Henderson tallied 15 points and Zia Cooke 10 points for South Carolina, who moved to 2-0 with the win.
The bright spot for the Coyotes was Summit League Ticketsmarter Player of the Week Liv Korngable. Korngable tallied 24 points and five rebounds for the Coyotes. Chloe Lamb added 10 points.
The senior trio of Korngable, Lamb and Hannah Sjerven accounted for 39 of the team’s 41 points. The lone other two points came from freshman Grace Larkins.
The trio led the Coyotes again Monday against Drake. USD defeated Drake 61-46 at Drake, with the trio tallying 52 of the team’s 61 points.
The Coyotes jumped ahead 29-12 after one quarter of play and led 40-19 at the half. Drake got within 10 in the fourth quarter, but the Coyotes held strong to close the game out.
Sjerven led the charge this time around, tallying 25 points and 12 rebounds to record a double-double. Korngable added 14 points and Lamb 13. Korngable added six assists. Larkins picked up a team-high five steals defensively for USD.
Megan Meyer and Maggie Bair picked up 10 points each to pace the Bulldogs. Grace Berg contributed eight points and six rebounds.
The Coyotes are back in action Thursday at home against Briar Cliff. Thursday’s home game is the final game before a trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands, where the Coyotes play three games in three days over Thanksgiving break.