Trojans Look for Third Quarterfinal Berth in Four Years: Game Preview – No. 4 seed Dakota State vs No. 1 seed Indiana Wesleyan

The #9 ranked Trojan Women’s Basketball team (27-6 overall) will play in the Round of 16 today in the NAIA Women’s Basketball National Tournament against the No. 1 seed Indiana Wesleyan Wildcats.

Indiana Wesleyan

The Wildcats (29-4 overall) come into this game as a No. 1 seed in the National Tournament again. They are seeing the Trojans one round earlier than last season. Indiana Wesleyan remains as a strong team and has only four losses on the year. Three of those losses coming against Marian. It will be the second ever meeting between the two teams. With DSU winning the lone meeting last year in the Quarterfinals, 71-70.

This group knows their role and their players mostly stick to their strengths. The Wildcats are the sixth highest scoring offense in the NAIA at 83.1 points per game. They’re also ranked sixth in field goal percentage at 46.4%, but from beyond the arc they’re just 32.2% and sit in 62nd in the NAIA. Indiana Wesleyan has just a few players that are true threats from deep, but even more who will still shoot it.

They’re led in scoring by junior Lilli Frasure with 18.9 points per game. Frasure he has struggled in the National Tournament so far. Shooting just 5-for-20 (25%) and scoring just 13 points in the first two rounds. Her lowest scoring two-game span all season. Though the Wildcats boast three more players who average double figures. Jordan Reid averages 11.6 per game, followed by Taylor Folkema with 11.4 per game and Jade Nutley with 10.5 a game.

Dakota State

The Trojans are one of five teams, including the Wildcats, who scored 80+ points in the opening rounds of the National Tournament. The others being No. 1 seed Campbellsville, No. 1 seed Dordt and No. 4 seed Mayville State.

The four-peat North Star Athletic Association regular season champions come into this tournament battle tested. They’ve competed against five of the other 15 remaining teams in the Round of 16 this season. Also coming off of recent experience last season when they made the Semifinals, in 2022 when they made the Round of 32 and in 2021 when they made a run to the Quarterfinals.

DSU is led in scoring by Savannah Walsdorf who averages 16.7 points per game. She also leads her team in assists (2.3), steals (3.0) and boasts a  41.4% 3-pt field goal percentage. Following her in scoring is Angela Slattery with 10.5 points per game.

Milestone Watch

Over the weekend in the opening rounds, some Trojans joined the school record book and Walsdorf continued to rise. Walsdorf, along with her many other Trojan milestones/records, also now has garnished more than 400 career steals and 1,000 career rebounds. The only Trojan to accomplish either feat, let alone both. She also is now one of five Trojans with 200+ career made threes. She is also second all-time in career free throws made (321), just seven shy of the all-time spot over Jessi Giles (327).

Additionally, Tabor Teel got her 66th block of the season in the opening rounds. She currently sits in ninth in single season blocks and needs three more to take sole possession of eighth and two to tie. Slattery is 10th in the Top 10 for single season threes made with 68 made threes. She needs a pair to tie Walsdorf who has 70 this season and is tied for sixth in single season threes made. Walsdorf needs just one to tie Kylie Westover (2013-14) who had 71 – needs two to pass her and needs four to tie Jessi Giles (2020-21) who had 74.

Tipoff for the Round of 16 matchup against the No. 1 seed Wildcats begins at 6pm. Pregame begins at 5:45pm in the Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa on Jammin Country 103.

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