VALLEY CITY, N.D. – On a night where senior guard Rylie Osthus (De Smet, S.D.) broke a career high in points and set a school record for steals in a game, the No. 5 Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team cruised to victory over Valley City State University, 80-65 Wednesday in Valley City, N.D.
Both teams got off to a quick start as they traded baskets for the opening four minutes of the game. The Vikings (13-12) took a 15-9 lead midway through the first quarter. However, an Osthus field goal ended the VCSU run.
Osthus scored the next five points for the Tigers (25-4) to give them a 16-15 lead. Both teams traded baskets down the stretch until Kynedi Cheeseman (Alexandria, S.D.) connected on a pair of free throws to give DWU a 22-19 lead heading to the second period.
Sarah Carr (Huron, S.D.) kick started the big second quarter for DWU as she scored five-straight points for the Tigers. After the Vikings made a free throw, the Tigers went on a 15-4 run, thanks to a Makaela Karst (Plankinton, S.D.) 3-pointer to begin the scoring run. Madison Mathews (Draper, S.D.) continued the hot scoring for DWU as she connected on five-consecutive points to give the Tigers a 51-31 lead at halftime.
After VCSU hit a 3-point basket to begin the second half, Karst answered back with one of her own to hold the Tiger lead at 20 points. The Vikings would not be denied as they went on a quick 7-0 run to cut the DWU lead to 13 points.
But, another Karst 3-pointer pushed the lead back to 16 points. Moments later, Osthus nailed a 3-point shot to cushion the advantage.
Freshman Sydney Halling (Harrisburg, S.D.) added a layup, assisted by Osthus to give DWU a 66-48 lead in the closing minutes of the third period.
Cheeseman started the final frame with four points to give DWU a 72-53 lead, forcing a Viking timeout. VCSU scored five quick points following its' timeout to cut the Tiger lead to 14 points.
Following a DWU timeout moments later, the Vikings made a 3-point shot to make it an 11-point game. However, Cheeseman responded with a 3-pointer, followed by an Osthus basket.
With the clock winding down, Karst threw up a deep shot from beyond the arc and nailed the shot to give the Tigers a 15-point victory.
Osthus recorded a career night as she tallied a double-double with 24 points, 10 steals, seven rebounds and four assists. Cheeseman chipped in 18 points and five assists, while Karst added 14 points and Carr notched 13 points.
DWU shot 54.7 percent from the field and 41.7 percent from 3-point range, while finishing with 20 forced turnovers and 22 points off turnovers.
The Tigers return to Great Plains Athletic Conference play to close out the regular season against Doane University at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Corn Palace.