January 11, 2018 - 8:39 am - Posted in Sports

Darbi Gustafson and Renee Maneman both scored 16 points in leading 14th-ranked Northwestern to a 69-56 win over No.8 Dakota Wesleyan in a GPAC match-up between ranked teams played tonight at the Bultman Center. The Red Raiders picked up their season-high fifth straight win and improve to 8-2 in conference play, 13-5 overall. DWU slips to 7-3 in the conference, 15-4 overall.

Gustafson picked up her team-leading fifth double-double of the season, scoring 16 points to go with 10 rebounds, making 7-of-11 field goal attempts. Maneman also scored 16 points and finished one assist shy of her fifth double-double of the season, closing the game with nine. Breana Schuiteman added 14 points, 12 in the first half, going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc.

After the teams traded baskets for the first five minutes, Schuiteman knocked down her first three-pointer and began an 8-1 Northwestern run that led to a 22-17 lead by the end of the first quarter. Following a basket by DWU senior Ashley Bray to start the second quarter, Northwestern scored the next six points on baskets by Maneman, Anna Kiel and Kassidy De Jong to extend its lead to nine (28-19). A five-point game with 4:57 left in the quarter, Northwestern scored 13 straight points and outscored DWU 13-3 over the final five minutes to take a 45-30 halftime lead. The Red Raiders limited the Tigers to one field goal, a three-pointer by Bray with under a minute left, during the surge.

A basket by Gustafson put NWC up 17 at the start of the second half but Dakota Wesleyan outscored the hosts 16-9 over the rest of the period to make it a 10-point game, 56-46, at the end of the third. Bray scored the first points of the final quarter, cutting the Red Raider lead to eight (56-48) at the eight-minute mark. Haley Birks knocked down a three-pointer on the next possession, however, to start a 9-2 Northwestern run to put the game away.

Northwestern shot 49% for the game, 41% (7/17) from beyond the arc, compared to 46% by DWU. The Red Raiders dominated the boards against one of the top rebounding teams in the NAIA, holding a 37-22 edge on the glass.

Dakota Wesleyan was led by Ashley Bray with 18 points, followed by Amber Bray with 11.

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