Flatten's career day propels SDSU in Denver

DENVER -- Skyler Flatten scored a career-high 36 points, Mike Daum tallied his 15th double-double of the season and the Jackrabbit men's basketball team took down Denver Sunday afternoon, 92-82.

Flatten hit eight 3-pointers and finished 14-of-18 from the field inside Magness Arena, burying the third-most 3-pointers for a single-game in South Dakota State's Division I history.

Daum scored 28 points and pulled down 12 rebounds, moving into the top 15 on the NCAA's all-time scoring chart while passing Mark Tetzlaff to claim SDSU's career rebounding record.

Tevin King (12 points) and David Jenkins (11 points) rounded out the top Jackrabbit scorers, as King dished four assists and Jenkins hit a trio of 3s.

Owen King led SDSU with five assists over 20 minutes of action.

South Dakota State improved to 19-6 on the season and 9-1 in Summit League play, maintaining a 1.5-game lead over Omaha while sitting two games ahead of Purdue Fort Wayne in the league standings.

Denver (7-16, 2-7 Summit League) was led by David Nzekwesi's 21 points and Ronnie Harrell Jr.'s nine rebounds.

"I thought our guys did a tremendous job playing for each other and sharing the ball today," head coach T.J. Otzelberger said. "This trip has been great for us with team building and chemistry, and that showed on the court in the game. Any time you go on the road in conference play it's challenging, and to be able to rise to the occasion in two games this week shows a lot about our guys."

The Jackrabbits and Pioneers traded buckets through the opening five minutes, drawing even five times before a 3-point play gave Denver a brief 13-10 lead at 14:46. That deficit was short-lived for State, however, as Skyler Flatten scored 13 of the next 15 Jackrabbit points (including seven unanswered) as SDSU built a 25-18 lead before the under-eight break.

The Pioneers cut it to four (25-21) moments later, but the Jacks continued to hit and went up 33-21 over the next four minutes, forcing a Denver timeout at 4:31 after a Jenkins 3-pointer capped an 8-0 Jackrabbit run.

Ahead 42-31 at the half, South Dakota State used a barrage of 3-pointers over the final 20 points to pull away for good, hitting nine from deep in the second frame.

Tevin King put the Jacks up 20 (57-37) at 15:31 after a 3-point play began with a highlight reel steal-and-slam, and two minutes later State saw its lead reach a game-high 25 (65-40) as Flatten buried his fifth 3-pointer of the day.

The Pioneers found their stroke down the stretch and climbed back within 10 inside the final minute, but the Jackrabbits' double-figure advantage held up as SDSU claimed its eighth-straight victory.

Game Notes
South Dakota State is 16-6 all-time against Denver and has won six straight in the series.
Mike Daum entered today's game 17th on the NCAA's scoring list with 2,826 career points. He is now 15th in history with 2,854 career points, moving past Otis Birdsong (Houston; 2,832) and Larry Bird (Indiana State; 2,850).
David Jenkins climbed to 41st on SDSU's all-time scoring list with 1,029 career points. He broke a tie with Jeff Booher (1,018; 1998-92) and passed Merlyn Smith (1,028; 1955-58) in the game..
Mike Daum moved into second in career 3-pointers at South Dakota State, passing Clint Sargent, who hit 253 between 2007-11. Skyler Flatten is tied for ninth on the list with 167 made 3-pointers and David Jenkins is 10th with 165.
Mike Daum used a putback layup to move past Mark Tetzlaff (1,132 rebounds) in the Jackrabbit record books for career rebounds. He now has 1,133 boards.

South Dakota State returns to Frost Arena next Saturday as North Dakota comes to town. The Jackrabbits and Fighting Hawks tip at 4:15 p.m. following the women's contest.