Five top moments from the opening day of the Summit League tournament
There were plenty of moments to note and click on from the Premier Center on Friday.
SIOUX FALLS — The first five-day Summit League tournament got underway on Friday and there were plenty of moments to note and click on from the Premier Center.
Let’s start with what might well be the shot of the tournament already:
March is here!
💥THE ROOS ARE MOVING ON💥@SanaaStandre hits the game winning three ‼️#MidcoSports | #TourneyHQ | #March2TheSummit | @thesummitleague | @KCRoosWBB pic.twitter.com/ntU3qnSMdt— 📣 Midco Sports (@MidcoSports) March 3, 2023
The buzzer-beater of the tournament came at the end of the Kansas City-Denver women’s game, with the Roos’ Sanaa' St. Andre hitting an off-balance three from the left wing for the 66-65 victory.
The 5-foot-8 junior guard finished with nine points in the game and the make was her 13th 3-pointer of the season, so her timing was good. (Great call by Midco Sports' Jay Elsen in the video, as well.)
Kansas City only had seven healthy players for the game, and this was win No. 8 on the season for the Roos, who were in last place entering the tournament. It’s a good finish for Dionnah Jackson-Durrett, who is in her first season as coach.
Meanwhile for Denver, they’re are now 0-8 in the Summit League Tournament since advancing to the 2014 title game as the No. 6 seed.
First win for the Tommies
In Friday’s leadoff game, it was the old guard against the new kids on the block.
Chalk one up for the Tommies, who won in their Summit League tournament debut, 61-50, on Friday afternoon.
Nobody in conference history has played in the event more times than the Leathernecks, either, now with a record of 16-28 in the event after making the tournament for the 30th time this season, according to the conference.
The prize for win No. 1 for the Tommies. Facing top-seeded South Dakota State at 12:30 on Saturday, as the Jacks are 30-5 all-time in the tournament and have won nine times.
All threes, no twos to start for Roos and Pios
The 3-point shot has never been hotter. And the women’s teams from Kansas City and Denver took it to the next level.
In the first quarter, the teams only made 3-pointers, with five from Denver and two from Kansas City. They did not make a single two-point shot in the first 10 minutes, which saw the Pioneers lead 19-7. The Roos were 2-for-18 from the field in the quarter, only making the two 3-pointers.
The game matched the second-best 3-pointers made per game team in Denver (8.3) and Kansas City, which makes fewer than four per game (ranking 325th in the country).
With all that said, it was fitting twist that the game ended on a 3-pointer from Kansas City’s St. Andre.
Hawks, Mavericks head to Saturday
The low seeds won on Friday night in the men’s tournament, with No. 9 North Dakota winning over Denver, and No. 10 Omaha dispatching No. 7 Kansas City. (In all, three of the four lower seeded teams won on Friday in the first day of the expanded tournament format.)
For UND, they’ve won six of their last eight games now and will take on Oral Roberts, a team the Fighting Hawks played to a three-point game on Feb. 16. Omaha had lost nine of its last 10 games before upending Kansas City late Friday.
Watch this kid win $250 in the @SCHEELS shootout... from multiple angles 😳⁰ #March2TheSummit pic.twitter.com/3UWgliHViS— The Summit League (@thesummitleague) March 4, 2023
It’s always good to win money, and it’s even better when you do it on a basketball court with thousands of people watching, capped with a half-court shot.
Good job, kid.