MITCHELL, S.D. – The Dakota Wesleyan University men’s basketball team picked up its first Great Plains Athletic Conference win of the year Saturday afternoon when it beat Hastings College 91-79 at the Corn Palace.
The Tigers are now 4-5 overall and 1-2 in the GPAC while Hastings, which is receiving votes in the NAIA, is 9-2 overall and 2-2 in the league.
Dakota Wesleyan grabbed an early lead Saturday, and was able to maintain a slim lead throughout much of the first half. The Tigers went on a 9-0 run that included five points from Mike Lee to go up by 11, 27-16, with 9:47 left in the first half, but Hastings – which is fourth in the NAIA in three-point percentage – hit three 3-pointers to make it a four-point game, 29-25, with 8:28 to play.
The Broncos took their first lead of the game on a three by Dane Bacon with 6:22 left in the half, but Bo LaCroix hit back-to-back threes to give the Tigers the lead again. Hastings tied the game at 42 with 3:43 left in the half, but the Tigers went on a 13-4 run to end the half with a 55-46 lead.
Lee scored two straight buckets to open the second half and extend DWU’s lead to 13, 59-46, and the Tigers pushed the lead to 19, with 16:11 to play. The Broncos responded with an 11-0 run to make it a 10-point game, 68-58, with 11:40 to play, but DWU pushed its lead back to 19 and was able to keep Hastings at bay to hold on for the win.
Jalen Voss finished with a game-high 25 points and 11 rebounds for the Tigers for his seventh double-double of the year. He had 18 points at halftime. LaCroix added 24 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the field, a 3-for-3 mark from long range and a 7-for-7 clip from the line. Lee added 12 points and Aireus Stephenson and Carde Pennington each had 11 points. Stephenson also had five assists. DWU shot 56.9 percent from the field, and shot 70 percent in the first half. The Tigers went 18-for-26 from the line and had 31 rebounds and 12 turnovers.
Dylan Flinn led Hastings with 18 points. Brady Lollman and Zach Lenagh both had 14 points and Bacon finished with 12. Lollman also had eight rebounds and six assists. The Broncos shot 51.6 percent from the field and just 29.4 percent from long range. They went 10-for-14 from the line and had 30 rebounds and 18 turnovers.
Dakota Wesleyan is back at home Wednesday, Dec. 5, when it hosts Morningside College at 8 p.m.