MADISON, S.D. – The Dakota Wesleyan University men's basketball team was unable to find its groove on Monday night, as Dakota State University snapped DWU's seven-game winning streak by the final of 76-67 at the DSU Fieldhouse in Madison, S.D.
It was nothing short of a an in-state rival game as both teams battled early in the contest, with DSU leading for much of the first half. The Tigers (15-4, 6-1 GPAC) took their first lead of the game with 3:17 to play in the first half when senior Tate Martin (Mitchell, S.D.) banked a 3-pointer. Junior Jason Spicer (Sioux Falls, S.D.) pushed the Tiger lead to three on a layup in the paint. DWU's lead didn't last long, however, as the Trojans (8-10) scampered to a four-point lead with less than a minute remaining in the first half. Martin eventually pulled the No.12 Tigers within one on another long range 3-pointer with three ticks left in the first stanza.
DSU jumped out to a five-point lead early in the second half, but Martin kept the Trojans in check with a jumper in the lane, pulling the Tigers within one. Later in the game, it was a see-saw affair between both teams as DWU tried to find momentum. With 3:34 to play, the Trojans took a seven-point lead, but again Martin wouldn't let the Tigers go down without a fight, hitting another jumper on the left side of the key, pulling the Tigers within three. However, a few costly turnovers and missed shots, DSU went on to hit 3-of-4 free throws to capture the victory.
DWU shot 44 percent from the field and 82 percent from the free-throw line. Spicer led the Tigers with 24 points and six rebounds. Martin added 16 points and 10 assists, good for a double-double, his third in the last four games. Trae Vandeberg (Madison, S.D.) chipped in 14 points and nine assists.
The Tigers return to Great Plains Athletic Conference action, taking on No. 4 Northwestern College at 4 p.m. Saturday in Orange City, Iowa.