HASTINGS, Neb. – After dropping an early season matchup to (RV) Hastings College, the No. 15 Dakota Wesleyan University men's basketball team got revenge thanks to tough defense and hot shooting in a 79-60 Great Plains Athletic Conference victory Saturday in Hastings, Neb.
Hastings got off to a quick start as they held a 6-0 lead in the early minutes of the game. However, Aaron Ahmadu (Houston, Texas) ended the Broncos scoring run with a layup to put the Tigers (15-6, 9-5 GPAC) on the scoreboard.
After a handful of missed 3-pointers, Collin Kramer (Volga, S.D.) sank the first shot from deep for DWU as he brought the Tigers within three points. Moments later, Samuel McCloud (Rapid City, S.D.) nailed a shot from behind the arc to tie the game at 10.
On the next possession, Ahmadu made a layup to give the Tigers their first lead of the game, 12-11. But, the Broncos (14-8, 7-7 GPAC) answered back with a 3-point shot to regain the lead.
The Tigers strung together a quick 8-0 run to hold a 20-14 lead midway through the first half. After Hastings tied the game, Koln Oppold (Sioux Falls, S.D.) made a layup followed by a Nick Harden (Chicago, Ill.) 3-pointer to help the Tigers hold a five-point lead.
With the half coming to a close, the Tigers put some space between themselves and the Broncos as Harden dished the ball to Oppold for the fast-break layup, giving DWU an eight-point lead. A Harden layup gave the Tigers a 36-31 lead as both teams headed to the locker rooms.
The Tigers came out hot in the second half as Ty Hoglund (Dell Rapids, S.D.) notched a 3-pointer to give DWU a 41-33 lead. Minutes later, Harden found Kramer behind the arc for another 3-point basket.
With 13 minutes left in the contest, Ahmadu stole the ball and pitched it ahead to Hoglund who found Tristan Teichmeier (Sioux Falls, S.D.) for the fast-break layup, giving the Tigers a 21-point lead.
The Broncos would not go away quietly as they put together a run and cut the DWU lead to 13 points. The Tigers weathered the storm with tough defense and hot shooting as they pushed their lead back to 19 points and cruised to victory.
Harden led all scorers with 28 points and six assists, while Kramer added a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. Teichmeier fell one rebound shy of a double-double with 14 points and nine rebounds, as Ahmadu chipped in 13 points.
The Tigers host No. 7 Briar Cliff University for a GPAC battle at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Corn Palace.