Trojans Not Ready To Go Home Yet

The Dakota State women’s basketball team last night provided another upset in the NAIA National Tournament, defeating Carroll College 82-72 in the Round of 16 to move on to the NAIA Quarterfinals.

Savannah Walsdorf struck first for the Trojans, scoring the first five points of the game. The Saints then answered with a ten point run to gain a lead they did not lose for the rest of the first half. 

It was 19-14 after the first quarter before Carroll opened the second quarter on a six point scoring run. The Trojans then answered with a run of their own, and outscored Carroll 19-8 the rest of the quarter. Lilli Mackley hit a buzzer-beating three pointer at the end of the first half to tie the game at 33-33 heading into the break.

The Saints led by as much as 13 points in the second quarter. 

Coming out of halftime, the Trojans were eventually able to regain the lead for the first time since early in the first quarter, but both sides traded leads multiple times in the third quarter, with three lead changes in and two ties in the quarter.

Heading into the fourth, both teams were tied at 49-49 after each team scored 16 points in the third quarter. 

DSU then exploded in the fourth quarter, as the Trojans went on a six point run with the game tied 58-58. Carroll did answer with a 10-4 run of their own to tie the game back up with under three minutes to go.

Thanks to their free throw shooting, DSU added six more unanswered points to take a 74-68 lead, and from there Carroll got no closer than within four points of the Trojans, as DSU continued to hit free-throws late, going 8-8 from the line in the final minute. 

The Trojans made 16 of their free throws in the final quarter and scored 33 total points in the quarter, allowing them to upset Carroll with a final score of 82-72.

A total of seven ties and six lead changes were registered in the game.

Four Dakota State players scored in double digits paced by Savannah Walsdorf with 20 points. She was 5-of-10 from the field and made all nine free-throws. Walsdorf posted a double-double with 12 rebounds, and also added three assists and two steals. 

Walsdorf recorded 15 of her points in the second half. 

Walsdorf moved to third all-time on the Trojan women’s basketball scoring list with 1,505 career points after Tuesday’s victory. She passed Sheila Haack for third all-time scoring with 1,497 points from 1995-2000.

Sidney Fick scored a season-high 19 points off the bench for the Trojans. She was 6-of-10 from the field and made 5-of-7 free-throws. She pulled down seven rebounds.

Elsie Aslesen tallied 13 points and five rebounds for DSU, and recorded three blocked shots and stole the ball two times. Lilli Mackley scored 10 points, making 7-of-8 from the free-throw line.

Maddie Gerritz led the Saints with 24 points. She was 8-of-14 from the field and made all six free-throw attempts. She pulled down eight rebounds. Jamie Pickens posted a double-double of 17 points and collected a game-high 16 rebounds for Carroll. She had two blocks and two assists.

Dakota State shot 41.5 percent overall from the field (22-of-53 field goals) compared to Carroll 41.4 percent (29-of-70 field goals). The Trojans hit 9-of-24 from the 3-point line, while the Saints made 7-of-18 3-pointers. 

DSU converted 29-of-33 free-throws (87.9 percent), making all 19 free-throw attempts in the final twenty minutes of the game. CC was 7-of-8 from the free-throw line (87.5 percent).

Dakota State outscored Carroll 27-10 in bench points.

The Trojans, ranked No. 24 in the final NAIA Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 national poll, won their third straight game, their 19th win in the last 20 games, to raise their overall record to 28-6. DSU’s 28 season wins is a new school record.

Carroll ended their season with a 27-6 overall record. The Saints were ranked No. 11 in the final NAIA Women’s Basketball national poll, ending their 15-game winning streak.

It was the second straight game for the Trojans earning a victory over a higher seed, and they continue their action tonight in the Liston Bracket final, facing No. 1 seed Indiana Wesleyan (31-3 overall record, No. 5 ranking in the final national poll). The Wildcats carry a 23-game winning streak after defeating No. 4 seed Briar Cliff 88-77 earlier Tuesday.  

In his postgame comments, Trojans Head Coach David Moe said that he is looking forward to the challenge Indiana Wesleyan presents, and that he and his team aren’t ready to go home just yet.

Tip-off from the Tyson Events Center is set for 6pm, and the game can be heard on FM 103.1 or online at