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DWU, Concordia clashed in last year's GPAC basketball quarterfinals. They meet again Saturday

Dakota Wesleyan University heads to Seward, Neb., on Saturday, Jan. 8, for a Great Plains Athletic Conference doubleheader

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Dakota Wesleyan men against Briar Cliff during a game on Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at the Corn Palace. Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic
Matt Gade
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MITCHELL -- Revenge may be the theme of Saturday's doubleheader for Dakota Wesleyan University and Concordia.

When the Great Plains Athletic Conference foes match up, they may have last year's quarterfinal conference tournament game on the mind. Concordia's women's team defeated DWU 70-58 in the GPAC tournament in Seward, Neb., while the DWU men defeated Concordia 70-58 at the Corn Palace in Mitchell.

Yes, the same exact score occurred with the same two teams (though, differing schools winning) playing 240 miles apart.

The Tigers and Bulldogs match up on Saturday, Jan. 8, in Seward, Neb. The women's game is scheduled for 2 p.m. and the men play after at about 3:45 p.m. Here's a look at the matchups.

The games are important as the GPAC schedule reaches its midway marker. At 3-5 in league play, the DWU men currently reside on the fringe of the top-eight of the conference standings, tied with Doane for the No. 8 slot.

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The Tiger women are currently tied for third in the GPAC with Briar Cliff and a half-game out of second place in the GPAC standings, which is held by Concordia (7-3). The winner of Saturday's game takes second place alone. The top-two teams at season's end earn home-court advantage in the GPAC tournament quarterfinals and semifinals and are in line for potential automatic bids to the NAIA national tournament.

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Dakota Wesleyan women against Briar Cliff during a game on Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at the Corn Palace. Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic
Matt Gade

DWU women at No. 22 Concordia

When/where: 2 p.m. in Seward, Neb. at Friedrich Arena.

DWU is 14-3 overall and 6-3 in GPAC games. The Tigers were on an 11-game win streak before falling to Briar Cliff on Wednesday, Jan. 5 at the Corn Palace.

Dakota Wesleyan University averages 71.3 points per game and is led by Matti Reiner's 12.7 points per game and Jada Campbell's 13 points per game.

Concordia, ranked No. 22 in the NAIA, is 10-6 overall and 7-3 in the GPAC. The Bulldogs have won their past two games, defeating Doane and Mount Marty.

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Taysha Rushton leads Concordia at 16.3 points per game and has led the team individually scoring in nine of its 16 matchups. Rylee Pauli averages 8.3 points and 6.9 rebounds per game.

DWU men at No. 23 Concordia

When/Where: 3:45 p.m. in Seward, Neb. at Friedrich Arena.

Both teams are coming off a conference loss.

DWU fell to Briar Cliff on Wednesday, Jan. 5, while Concordia lost 70-67 in overtime to Mount Marty the same night.

Dakota Wesleyan University is averaging 68.2 points per game and is on a three-game losing streak. The Tigers are 6-9 overall and 3-5 in conference play. They are led by Koln Oppold's 13.6 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. Nick Wittler averages 10.5 points and Jeffrey Schuch averages 10 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.

Concordia (14-4, 7-3 GPAC) is 8-0 at home this year. The Bulldogs are led by Carter Kent's 17.1 points per game. Noah Schutte averages 13.8 points and Gage Smith averages 12.1 points and 7.1 rebounds per game.

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Dakota Wesleyan men against Briar Cliff during a game on Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at the Corn Palace. Matt Gade / Mitchell Republic
Matt Gade

Upcoming DWU schedule

Women's next five games: Jan. 12, home vs. Midland, 6 p.m.; Jan. 16, home vs. Mount Marty, 2 p.m.; Jan. 21, at Hastings, 5 p.m.

Men's next three games: Jan. 12, home vs. Midland, 7:45 p.m.; Jan. 16, home vs. Mount Marty, 3:45 p.m.; Jan. 21, at Hastings, 6:45 p.m.

(Note: Sunday, Jan. 16 vs. Mount Marty is Pink the Palace day).

Luke Hagen was promoted to editor of the Mitchell Republic in 2014. He has worked for the newspaper since 2008 and has covered sports, outdoors, education, features and breaking news. He can be reached at lhagen@mitchellrepublic.com.
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