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Lancers upend No. 15 DWU women

By JEREMY HOECK Yankton Press and Dakotan YANKTON -- The Lancers did it again. Morningside, Concordia, now Dakota Wesleyan. All three ranked teams. And all three have fallen victim to a Mount Marty College women's basketball team that has started...

Dakota Wesleyan's Madison Kuehl (22) attacks the basket against Mount Marty's Raquel Sutera during their Great Plains Athletic Conference women's basketball game on Wednesday at Laddie E. Cimpl Arena. (James Cimburek/Yankton Press and Dakotan)
Dakota Wesleyan's Madison Kuehl (22) attacks the basket against Mount Marty's Raquel Sutera during their Great Plains Athletic Conference women's basketball game on Wednesday at Laddie E. Cimpl Arena. (James Cimburek/Yankton Press and Dakotan)

By JEREMY HOECK

Yankton Press and Dakotan

YANKTON - The Lancers did it again.

Morningside, Concordia, now Dakota Wesleyan.

All three ranked teams. And all three have fallen victim to a Mount Marty College women's basketball team that has started to capture national attention.

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"Just the confidence right now is incredible," said senior Alex Kneeland, who scored 27 points in a 60-52 victory Wednesday night over No. 15-ranked Dakota Wesleyan at Cimpl Arena.

It marked the third win over a ranked team in the last week for the Lancers (15-8, 9-6), who have now beaten the current No. 2, No. 7 and No. 15 teams in consecutive games.

The nation's fourth-leading scorer at 21.2 points per game, Kneeland made just 3-of-11 three-point attempts but was 10-of-10 at the free throw line.

"Alex has been a trooper," Schlimgen said of Kneeland, this week's conference Player of the Week. "We want to make sure we get the ball to her and let her do her thing."

Unlike their previous two wins over ranked teams, however, the Lancers won Wednesday primarily because of their defense. After scoring 72 points in a 25-point win in the first meeting this season, Dakota Wesleyan was held to 31 percent shooting and 26 points under its season average.

The Tigers (16-6, 9-6) did trim a 14-point deficit down to 56-52 with 2:35 remaining in the fourth quarter on an Amber Bray basket. A turnover on the next trip and a missed layup at the 1:08 mark prevented DWU from getting any closer.

"I thought we played well enough on defense, but we just didn't shoot the ball well ourselves," DWU coach Jason Christensen said.

The Tigers, who have now lost five of their last seven, got 19 points and seven rebounds from freshman Rylie Osthus. The rest of the team combined to shoot 13-of-48. Mount Marty, conversely, shot 31 percent and was 6-of-28 on three-pointers.

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The foursome of Kristin Sabers, Erica Herrold, Ashley Bray and Amber Bray came into Wednesday combining for 54 points a game. They were held to a combined 26 points against the Lancers.

Schlimgen particularly credited Kneeland's defense of Sabers, who made 1-of-5 three-pointers.

"She did a great job guarding Sabers," Schlimgen said. "That was someone we knew we had to stop, and Alex didn't allow her to get going."

Mount Marty, meanwhile, also had some help for Kneeland, despite not having anyone else in double figures.

Senior Raquel Sutera added nine points, 12 rebounds and three blocks, while junior Kellie Winckler had seven points and seven rebounds, and junior Logan Wagner scored seven points.

Eight days ago, Mount Marty was sitting 6-6 in the GPAC and not receiving any votes in the NAIA national poll. In this week's poll, the Lancers were receiving votes (essentially No. 30).

"I don't even really know what happened," Kneeland said. "We just needed a win; one win to get us going. Then we would know we can do this; that the hard work was paying off."

DAKOTA WESLEYAN (16-6, 9-6)

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Gabby Frykbo 1-4 0-1 2; Rylie Osthus 5-11 7-7 19; Erica Herrold 2-11 2-2 6; Ashley Bray 3-13 2-2 8; Amber Bray 3-8 0-0 6; Hope Menning 0-1 0-0 0; Madison Kuehl 1-3 0-0 0; Kelsey Bertram 1-1 0-0 3; Kristin Sabers 2-7 1-2 6. TOTALS 18-59 12-14 52.

MOUNT MARTY (15-8, 9-6)

Alex Kneeland 7-20 10-10 27; Cassidy Gebhart 2-3 2-4 6; Logan Wagner 2-8 2-2 7; Kellie Winckler 3-5 1-2 7; Raquel Sutera 3-12 1-2 9; Erica Dreckman 0-2 0-0 0; Brittni Bormann 0-1 0-0 0; Mikayla Prouty 1-6 2-2 4; Sammy Kasowski 0-0 0-0 0; Samantha Blake 0-1 0-0 0. TOTALS 18-58 18-22 60.

DWU 15 23 35 52

MMC 13 30 49 60

Three-Pointers - MMC 6-28 (Kneeland 3-11, Sutera 2-8, Wagner 1-5, Bormann 0-1, Prouty 0-1, Dreckman 0-2), DWU 4-21 (Osthus 2-3, Bertram 1-1, Sabers 1-5, Am. Bray 0-1, Menning 0-1, Frykbo 0-2, Herrold 0-4, Ash. Bray 0-4). Total Rebounds - MMC 42 (Sutera 12), DWU 40 (Sabers 8). Assists - DWU 10 (Osthus 3, Am. Bray 3), MMC 8 (Four with 2). Personal Fouls - DWU 21, MMC 16. Fouled Out - None. Technical Fouls - DWU bench. Turnovers - DWU 12, MMC 8. Attendance - 497.

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