Defense guides No. 5 Tigers past Lancers

Defense guides No. 5 Tigers past Lancers

MITCHELL, S.D. – The No. 5 Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team used stifling defense to record their 24th win of the season against in-state rival Mount Marty College in a 65-48 Great Plains Athletic Conference matchup Wednesday at the Corn Palace.

 MMC jumped on the scoreboard first, taking an early 3-0 lead in the opening minute and a half. Kynedi Cheeseman (Alexandria, S.D.) did not let the Lancer lead last long as she scored on back-to-back possessions to give DWU a 4-3 lead.

 Both teams traded baskets for the next three minutes until the Tigers (24-3, 17-3 GPAC) took a timeout. Coming out of the break, Cheeseman found Sydney Halling (Harrisburg, S.D.) for an easy layup.

 With a minute left in the opening quarter, Madison Mathews (Draper, S.D.) nailed a 3-point shot to push the Tiger lead to seven points.

 After the Lancers (13-13, 7-13 GPAC) pulled within four points in the second quarter, DWU answered back with four-straight points thanks to a Rylie Osthus (De Smet, S.D.) jump shot. But, the Lancers would not go away as they notched a layup with the clock winding down to make it a 26-21 game at halftime with DWU leading.

 The Tigers opened the second half on a 17-4 run that was capped off by a Sarah Carr (Huron, S.D.) 3-pointer to give them a 19-point lead.

 MMC called a full timeout to regroup. Coming out of the timeout, the Lancers found the basket with a layup. However, Carr poured in another 3-point basket to give the Tigers their biggest lead of the game to that point. The Lancers finished the third quarter on a 5-0 spurt to narrow the DWU lead to 19 points.

 MMC cut into the Tiger lead with a 3-pointer of their own to make it a 16-point game. But, Makaela Karst (Plankinton, S.D.) found her way to the basket with a layup. 

 Both teams went cold from the field for three minutes midway through the fourth stanza until Cheeseman added a layup to end the scoring drought. Moments later, Carr dished the ball to Mathews who scored a layup to give DWU an 18-point lead and cruise to victory.

 Cheeseman led all scorers with 22 points on 10-of-16 shooting from the field along with four rebounds and three steals. Carr chipped in 12 points and four rebounds, as Osthus tallied eight points and six rebounds. DWU shot 47.4 percent from the field and outrebounded the Lancers 34-19. The Tiger bench finished with 24 points compared to three by MMC, while the DWU defense held the Lancers to 35.6 percent shooting from the field.

 DWU sits in first place of the GPAC at 17-3 in conference play, while Concordia University and Northwestern College are tied for second with a record of 16-3.

 The Tigers battle No. 1 Concordia University in a GPAC showdown at 2 p.m. Saturday in Seward, Neb.

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