Summit League tournament: Kansas City buzzer beater highlights 'play-in' games

North Dakota men use 3-pointers to take down Denver

Jade Hill of St. Thomas dribbles past Jada Thorpe of Western Illinois during the opening game of the Summit League tournament on Friday, March 3, 2023 at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls.
Matt Zimmer/Forum News Service

SIOUX FALLS — Kansas City's Sanaa' St. Andre heaved one in from just inside halfcourt at the buzzer to lift the 10th-seeded Kangaroos to a 66-65 win over No. 7 Denver in Friday's opening round of the Summit League tournament at the Premier Center.

Denver led 19-7 after one quarter and were up by eight at the end of three, but the Kangaroos (8-22) outscored them 25-16 in the final stanza, with St. Andre's prayer sealing the comeback.

Manna Mensah had 30 points for UMKC, while E'Lease Stafford had 11 and St. Andre had nine.

Denver (12-18) got 18 points from Emma Smith.

With the win, Kansas City will face No. 2 North Dakota State on Saturday at 3 p.m.


ST. THOMAS 61, WESTERN ILLINOIS 50 — The 8th-seeded Tommies were making their Summit League tournament debut and they won it behind a 22-point fourth quarter to advance to Saturday's quarterfinals, where they'll face top-seed South Dakota State at 12:30 p.m.

Maggie Negaard had 18 points for the Tommies (13-16) - all of which came in the second half, as St. Thomas held the Leathernecks to 19 first half points and just .279 shooting for the game. The Tommies also had a 45-39 rebounding edge and shot .385 from 3-point land to WIU's .176.

St. Thomas coach Ruth Sinn watches her team in the first half of the Summit League tournament opening game on Friday, March 3, 2023 at the Denny Sanford Premier Center. The Tommies beat Western Illinois 61-50.
Matt Zimmer/Forum News Service

Mallory McDermott had 11 points to lead WIU (10-20) and Elizabeth Lutz added 10. Faith Feuerbach had 12 points for St. Thomas and Jo Langbehn had nine points and 10 rebounds. Jade Hill had nine points, six assists and four rebounds.

UND men stay hot

NORTH DAKOTA 83, DENVER 68 — They may be the 9th-seed, but North Dakota isn't a team anyone should be excited to play in the Summit League tournament right now.

The Fighting Hawks won for the sixth time in their last eight games on Friday, knocking off Denver behind a 51 percent shooting effort and 13 3-pointers to advance to the quarterfinals. The Hawks (13-19) will now take on top-seeded and undefeated (in Summit League play) Oral Roberts on Saturday at 6 p.m.

Matt Norman had 25 points to lead UND, hitting six 3-pointers on 11 tries. Treysen Eaglestaff had 15 points and eight assists while Brady Danielson had 13 points and six rebounds.

Lukas Kisunas had 27 points and 10 boards for the Pioneers, while Tommy Bruner had 18 points.

OMAHA 73, KANSAS CITY 61 - The Maverick men ensured that both the men's and women's 10-seeds won their play-in games, as Omaha used a huge first half to build a big lead on 7th-seeded Kansas City and spent the second half fighting off a series of attempted comebacks to advance to the quarterfinals.


The Mavericks (9-22) will face 2-seed South Dakota State on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. The Jackrabbits (18-12) won both regular season meetings with Omaha.

The Mavs controlled the action almost from the jump against UMKC, and hot shooting late in the first half allowed them to build their lead as high as 25. UMKC started the second half strong, cutting the lead down to 13, but Omaha had it back to 20 minutes later. That trend continued, with the Mavericks never equaling their largest first half lead but the Kangaroos (11-21) never getting within single digits.

Frankie Fidler had 21 points to lead the Mavericks, while Dylan Brougham and Marquel Sutton had 15 apiece. Tyler Andrews had 20 points and 10 rebounds for UMKC.

Saturday's games
12:30 p.m: No. 1 SDSU vs. No. 8 St. Thomas
3 p.m: No. 2 NDSU vs. No. 10 Kansas City
6 p.m: No. 1 Oral Roberts vs. No. 9 North Dakota
8 p.m: No. 2 SDSU vs. No. 10 Omaha

Matt Zimmer is a Sioux Falls native and longtime sports writer. He graduated from Washington High School where he played football, legion baseball and developed his lifelong love of the Minnesota Twins and Vikings. After graduating from St. Cloud State University, he returned to Sioux Falls, began a long career in amateur baseball and started working as a sports freelancer. Zimmer was hired as a sport reporter at the Argus Leader in 2004, where he covered Sioux Falls high schools and colleges before moving to the South Dakota State University beat in 2014. Email Matt at
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