The Jackrabbit men's basketball team used a fast start to roll past Florida Gulf Coast Wednesday night at Frost Arena, 75-56.
South Dakota State improved to 8-6 with the victory, running its home winning streak to 15 games.
"I'm proud of our guys tonight," head coach Eric Henderson said. " We had 17 assists on 27 of our made field goals and that's how we want to play. That's how we need to play to be successful. We were also able to beat them by 13 on the board tonight, and when we do those things, we can have a lot of success. So, just really, really proud of our team's effort tonight."
Douglas Wilson went 8-for-9 from the field and finished with 20 points. Matt Dentlinger scored 15 points and David Wingett added 12. The Jacks outscored Florida Gulf Coast 38-26 in the paint, thanks in part to 14 offensive boards that turned into 18 second-chance points.
Alex Arians pulled down a team-high eight rebounds, just ahead of Baylor Scheierman's seven boards. Scheierman added three assists, second-most on the team behind Brandon Key, who matched his career-high with seven assists.
Noah Freidel was efficient in 12 minutes of action, scoring seven points with five points.
FGCU opened the scoring with a 3-pointer on its first possession, but went cold over the next eight minutes as the Jackrabbits took control with a 22-0 run. State grew its lead to a game-high 25 (42-17) thanks to a run of nine unanswered that began near the five-minute mark. The Eagles strung together a 9-0 rally of their own to end the half, but the early lead helped the Jacks head to the locker room with a 42-26 lead.
The Eagles kept charging as the second half started, crawling within 12 (45-33) on a Caleb Catto jumper at 16:52. They would come no closer, though, as a Wilson fast-break dunk followed Arians' lone 3-pointer of the night to start the Jacks on a 7-0 scoring burst.
South Dakota State's bench performed well down the stretch, as Freidel scored five of the last 10 Jackrabbit points and all 14 Jackrabbits saw the floor.
• South Dakota State is 2-2 all-time against Florida Gulf Coast
• Douglas Wilson posted his fourth 20-point scoring performance of the season
• Brandon Key has dished seven assists in four career games
• South Dakota State shared the ball throughout the night, netting 17 assists on 27 field goals
• The Jackrabbits have secured a winning record in nonleague play for the third-straight year
South Dakota State wraps up nonleague play Saturday against Idaho. Tipoff is set for noon from Frost Arena.