SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - Because of the miserable start at the beginning of the game, when IPFW fell behind 11 points 3 1/2 minutes in, the Mastodons lost to South Dakota State 85-75 in the first round of the Summit League tournament Sunday.
Whether that was their last game this season is up for discussion.
Chances are that IPFW is done with an 18-12 record - the best in school history. But there's an outside possibility that it could be invited into the Coaches Invitational Tournament. My guess is it won't happen.
South Dakota State was just bigger, stronger and faster - the holy trinity of college basketball superiority.
Guard Nate Wolters, who had 30 the last time IPFW lost to South Dakota State, had 30 again. That more than offset the 21 scored by IPFW sophomore Frank Gaines.
A mystery performance came from Trey McCorkle, who was 8 of 10 from the floor for 16 points. If he can be a whisper next year of what he was Sunday, IPFW could be a team to beat.
The sadness is the end of the Ben Botts-Zach Plackemeier era. Botts had 16 points and Plackemeier had seven, with seven assists and no turnovers in 40 minutes.
Great, great guys. Both the university and the city will miss them. I know I will.