Defense pushes No. 12 Tigers past No. 11 Broncos

Defense pushes No. 12 Tigers past No. 11 Broncos

MITCHELL, S.D. – With the game tied at 47, the No. 12 Dakota Wesleyan University women's basketball team finished the game on a 16-5 run to defeat No. 11 Hastings College, 63-52 in Great Plains Athletic Conference action Saturday at the Corn Palace in Mitchell.

 The Tigers (20-4, 11-3 GPAC) jumped out to a 15-4 lead early in the game after Amber Bray (Anoka, Minn.) knocked in four-straight points. Later, Ashley Bray (Anoka, Minn.) hit a 3-pointer to give DWU a 19-7 lead after the first quarter.

 The Broncos (18-5, 9-5 GPAC) tried to close the gap in the second quarter after making it a seven-point game. However, the Tigers finished the half on a 10-4 run capped off by a Kynedi Cheeseman (Alexandria, S.D.) 3-pointer at the buzzer to give DWU a 31-18 lead at the half.

 DWU built on their lead in the third quarter as Ashley Bray drove through the lane and made a layup. Less than a minute later, Amber Bray knocked in a three-point shot to extend the lead back to double digits. Rylie Osthus (De Smet, S.D.) made a jump shot followed by a free throw moments later to give DWU a 47-42 lead.

 Hastings tied the game two minutes later after a pair of free throws. However, the Tigers made seven-straight free throws down the stretch to solidify the victory and stay in third place of the conference race.

 Amber Bray led the team with a double-double as she scored 15 points and snagged 10 rebounds, while Cheeseman netted 13 points. Osthus tallied 11 points and five assists, as Ashley Bray added 11 points and four rebounds. The Tigers shot 51 percent from the field, while holding the Broncos to 35 percent from the field and just 13 percent from three-point range. DWU finished the game with 14 assists compared to three by Hastings.

 The Tigers take on in-state rival Mount Marty College for Pink the Palace Night at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Corn Palace in Mitchell.