AUSTIN, Texas -- The Jackrabbit men's basketball team staged a brilliant comeback, but saw its 2018-19 season come to an end Tuesday in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament, falling 79-73 to Texas at the Frank Erwin Center.
South Dakota State concludes the year at 24-9, reaching the 20-win plateau for the 25th time as a program while saying goodbye to three seniors: Mike Daum, Skyler Flatten and Tevin King.
The first half was full of momentum swings, as the Longhorns started fast towards a 19-0 lead while scoring on seven of their first eight possessions. Skyler Flatten ended SDSU's drought with a drive to the basket and a 3-pointer around the 15-minute mark, starting a long climb back for the Jackrabbits.
The teams traded baskets until 8:24, when an Alex Arians layup sparked SDSU on a 12-0 burst that pulled State within three (31-28) over the next three minutes. Arians scored the first seven points of the run, which was part of a larger five-minute span that Texas went scoreless.
The Longhorns recovered their edge down the stretch, pushing the lead to double figures briefly once more, but State used a Daum bucket inside the final minute to send the Jackrabbits to the locker room, down 43-35.
Texas again started fast in the second, building a 13-point lead early, but the Jackrabbits kept coming. SDSU crawled within two (59-57) at 13:01, and a Jenkins jumper at 8:32 put them in front, 65-64 before a two-handed, breakaway slam moments later gave State a 67-64 advantage.
UT answered with six straight to go back in front, and though SDSU kept it a one-possession game until the final minute of action, the Jackrabbits could not complete the rally.
Daum led the Jackrabbits with 25 points and 11 rebounds for his 55th career double-double, rising to No. 7 on the NCAA's all-time scoring list in the game. He concludes his career with 3,067 points.
Flatten added 14 points with a team-high five assists, and Tevin King pulled down five boards while coming up with two steals.
David Jenkins scored 19 behind a trio of 3-pointers, and Alex Arians tallied seven boards, seven points and three assists.
Texas' Dylan Osetkowski led all scorers with 26 points as one of three Longhorns in double figures.
This is the first-ever meeting between South Dakota State and Texas.
The Jackrabbits are 1-2 all-time in the National Invitational Tournament.
David Jenkins is No. 25 on SDSU's career scoring list with 1,194 points. He passed John Thomas (1966-69; 1,178) early in the first half.
At least three Jackrabbits scored in double figures in 32 of 33 games this year.