OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Matt Pile totaled 18 points and nine rebounds and Marlon Ruffin hit two free throws with 6 seconds left in the game as Omaha held off South Dakota State 81-78 on Sunday.
Noah Freidel sank two free throws with 2:11 remaining to give South Dakota State a 76-75 lead, but Pile and KJ Robinson answered with back-to-back layups to put the Mavericks up 79-76 with 26 seconds left. Alex Arians' layup pulled the Jackrabbits within a point. Robinson missed a free throw, but Pile blocked Douglas Wilson's layup attempt and Ruffin grabbed the rebound and was fouled by Matt Dentlinger.
JT Gibson topped Omaha (8-8) with 21 points, while Robinson scored 16. Ayo Akinwole added 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting.
Freidel, a freshman, paced South Dakota State with a career-high 28 points. He hit 6 of 13 from 3-point range. Arians added 16 points and seven rebounds, while Douglas Wilson pitched in with 13 points, five rebounds and four assists.
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