SPOKANE — Baylor Scheierman made a step-back three-pointer that dropped through the net as time expired, lifting the South Dakota State men’s basketball team to a 77-74 victory over Washington State on Saturday.
Scheierman’s shot came on the final possession after the Cougars tied the score on a pair of TJ Bamba free throws with 23 seconds left. Michael Flowers pulled Washington State to 74-72 with a step-back shot of his own with 31.6 seconds to go and WSU’s Noah Williams quickly stole the ball from Scheierman.
There were eight ties and eight lead changes in the game at the Spokane Arena.
Noah Freidel led the Jackrabbits (9-3) with 23 points, Zeke Mayo added 17 and Scheierman scored 11 with eight rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Flowers, a transfer from South Alabama, scored 24 points, his most for Washington State (7-3) and Bamba added a career-high 19.
The game was full of runs in the second half, starting with Flowers scoring 10 points as the Cougars started 19-5 for a 50-44 lead after trailing 39-31 at the half. WSU made 7 of 12 shots during the run, including three three-pointers, and the Jackrabbits were 2 of 7 shooting with four turnovers.
The Cougars promptly missed 11 of their next 12 shots, with three turnovers, as South Dakota State followed with a 20-4 run and led 64-54 with 6 1/2 minutes to play. The Jackrabbits made five straight shots and 7 of 8 during that flurry.
WSU then went on a 10-2 run, setting up the frantic finish.
South Dakota State went 10 of 16 from three-point range (52.5%) and shot 54% overall. Washington State was 9 of 35 behind the arc (26%) and shot 37% overall. The Jackrabbits had 10 more turnovers (18-8) and the Cougars had a 15-8 rebounding advantage on the offensive end to keep the game close.
The Cougars play two more home games before meeting Boise State back in Spokane, where they are 18-18, on Dec. 22.