Dec. 30, 2009
Release Courtesy of Cardinal Stritch Sports Information
MITCHELL, S.D. – (View games live on video) Facing the No. 14 Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.) University Tigers in the first round of the Fulton State Bank Classic (Dec. 29), the Cardinal Stritch University Wolves men’s basketball team came away with a big win. The Wolves, ranked 23rd in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletic (NAIA) Division II poll, would defeat the Tigers, who were ranked 14th in the Division II poll, by a score of 70-62.
The Wolves got up early on the Tigers using a strong game plan that saw Stritch have a lead of 26-13 with just over 6:30 to play in the half.
Stritch would continue the trend of strong play in the opening period by closing the half up 35-24 over Dakota Wesleyan. Navjot Singh (Mundelein, Ill.) led the Wolves at the break with nine points while Stritch, as a team, shot 47 percent from the floor. The Tigers were led in scoring by Brady Wiebe (Madison, S.D.) and his 11 points. Meanwhile, Stritch held Dakota Wesleyan shooters at bay as the Tigers hit on 34 percent of their shots.
During the opening minutes of play in the second half, the Tigers threatened to get their offense in order, but the Wolves would continue to keep at least an eight point or greater lead up until the 16-minute mark of the half.
With the Wolves up 43-35, the defense would suddenly lapse as Dakota Wesleyan would go on an 8-0 run tying the game at 43-43. The two teams would go point-for-point until they were knotted up at 51-51 with 8:15 remaining. From there, the Wolves would regain the lead with 7:30 to play in the game, ahead of the Tigers 57-51.
Unfortunately, the offense for Dakota Wesleyan would respond with a 10-3 run to go ahead of Stritch 61-60 with four minutes remaining in the game.
Tied at 62-62 with 3:43 remaining, the Stritch defense would lock down the game as Kody Braddix (Glendale, Ariz.) would hit on four key free throw opportunities, sealing the 70-62 win by Stritch.
Singh would lead all Stritch scorers with 17 points while Nick Ford (Fond Du Lac, Wis.) helped lend a hand to the scoring cause with seven assists on the night. For the game, the Wolves shot 49 percent from the floor while also hitting on 43 percent from beyond the arc.
Despite allowing Wiebe to notch a double double with a game-high 27 points and 13 rebounds, the Stritch defense was tough, holding the Tigers to 38 percent shooting from the field and just four percent from three-point range.
The win helps the Wolves improve to 10-4 overall while the Tigers drop to 11-5 overall. Stritch will take to the floor again on Wednesday, Dec. 30 for the second day of the Fulton State Bank Classic. The Wolves will take on Dana College at 5 p.m.