WICHITA, Kan. – Savannah Walsdorf and Elsie Aslesen powered the No. 24 ranked Dakota State (S.D.) to a fast start, snapping No. 12 ranked Eastern Oregon’s impressive 20-game winning streak for an 86-69 NAIA Women’s Basketball National Tournament Second Round victory at Garvey Center.  The Trojans make a return trip to the NAIA’s final site at Tyson Events Center in Sioux City, Iowa, for the first time since March 2021.

Dakota State tied the school program history with 27 victories for the third consecutive year, raising their overall record to 27-6.  The Trojans had won 19 times in the last 21 games.  Eastern Oregon, a member of the Cascade Collegiate Conference (CCC), ended their season with an overall record of 30-3.

It was the first-ever meeting between both teams Tuesday at Garvey Center, hosted by the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference (KCAC) on the campus of Friends (Kan.) University.

Dakota State, the lowest seed to advance in the Liston Quadrant at No. 6 seed, will face No. 2 seed Carroll (Mont.) of the Frontier Conference Tuesday afternoon at 3 p.m.  Carroll defeated Great Plains Athletic Conference’s foe Jamestown (N.D.), rallying back from a 36-25 halftime deficit for a 73-60 home victory. 

The last time DSU and Carroll met was in the Cattle Classic on Nov. 6, 2020, in Seward, Neb., where Carroll held on to defeat the Trojans 69-65.

(24) Dakota State (S.D.) 86, (12) Eastern Oregon 69 – FINAL

  • The Mountaineers took the first lead of the game after Sailor Liefke’s 3-pointer (assisted by Bayley Brennan) for a 3-0 lead with nine minutes, twenty-five seconds on the clock.
  • Aslesen scored the first basket for the Trojans, trailing 3-2 with 9:10 on the clock in the first period.
  • Liefke scored the first five points of the game for EOU, while Aslesen scored the first four points for DSU (EOU led 5-4 with 8:20 to go in the first).
  • Dakota State went on a furious run, thanks to Walsdorf where she scored 15 straight team points – including a 12-0 scoring run for a 17-5 commanding lead after a 3-pointer by Walsdorf with less than 4:30 left in the first period.
  • Eastern Oregon ended their drought with a basket by Halle Wright with four minutes to go in the first quarter (DSU led 17-7).
  • Walsdorf scored her 15th straight point after a pair of free-throws for as DSU stretched their lead to 19-7 with 3:03 to go in the first.
  • Aslesen scored the next two baskets for DSU’s 23-11 lead, followed by Walsodrf’s pair of field goals to balloon their lead to 27-11 with less than 45 seconds to go in the first quarter.
  • DSU led 27-13 by the end of the first period, highlighted by Walsdorf’s 19 points.
  • Caitlin Dyer drained a 3-pointer as the Trojans’ lead grew to 30-15 with 8:15 to go in the second quarter.
  • Dakota State maintained their double dight lead for the remaining second period, leading as many as 18 points at 44-26 after a pair of free-throws by Aslesen with less than 45 seconds to go.
  • The Mountaineers closed the first half with a 4-0 run to trim the Trojans’ lead to 44-30.
  • Leading 49-36, Eastern Oregon went on a 7-0 scoring run to cut Dakota State’s lead to 49-43 after Halle Wright’s free-throws with 4:17 on the clock in the third quarter.
  • Brie Holecek hit a 3-pointer as EOU trimmed DSU’s lead to 52-49 with less than two minutes to play in the third period.
  • The Trojans answered with a 4-0 run to stretch their lead to 56-49 after Courtney Menning’s free-throw with less than a minute to go.
  • DSU held on to a 56-51 lead, despite being outscored by EOU 21-12.
  • Dakota State maintained their control between five- and eight-point leads in the early fourth quarter.
  • Leading 65-60, Menning ignited a monstrous 13-2 outburst with a 3-pointer and capped by Dyer’s basket (assisted by Menning) for a 78-62 Dakota State lead with 2:20 left.
  • DSU outscored EOU 30-18 in the final quarter to secure the victory.
  • Walsdorf poured in a career-high 29 points on her 11-of-17 from the field and converted all six free-throws for Dakota State.  She also had five rebounds and stole the ball three times.
  • Aslesen tallied 21 points on her 8-of-14 field goals and 5-of-5 free-throws for DSU.  She pulled down eight rebounds and registered two blocks. 
  • Dyer scored 13 points off the bench for the Trojans.  She was 4-of-7 from the field, including a perfect 3-of-3 from the 3-point arc.  Sidney Fick and Menning each added 10 points.  Menning contributed four assists and two steals.  Fick had seven rebounds and three steals. 
  • Four EOU players scored in double digits, led by Holeck and Brennan each with 12 points.  Beverly Slater and Liefke each added 11 points. 
  • Slater pulled down nine rebounds and stole the ball four times for the Mountaineers.  Holeck added seven rebounds. 
  • Dakota State shot 49.2 percent from the field (31-of-63 field goals) and held Eastern Oregon to 38.6 percent (27-of-70 field goals).  The Trojans hit 10 3-pointers in 22 attempts, while the Mountaineers were held to 6-of-24 3-pointers.
  • DSU hit 14-of-15 free-throws (93.3 percent).  EOU converted 9-of-10 free-throws (90 percent).
  • Eastern Oregon outrebounded Dakota State 40-37.
  • The Trojans outscored Mountaineers 26-14 in bench points.