Dordt def. Briar Cliff 69-51
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Defenders built up an early lead to set the tone for their seventh straight win, a 69-51 home victory against Briar Cliff.
Dordt started the game on an 8-1 run through the opening five minutes, continuing to extend their lead through the rest of the first quarter. With the score at 9-3, Ashtyn Veerbeek scored on consecutive trips down the court to make the score 13-5. The lead was pushed to 10 on a Janie Schoonhoven layup minutes later. With less than a minute to go, Hayden Heimensen scored three of her 11 points on a basket from beyond the arc, helping the Defenders end the quarter with an 20-11 advantage.
The Dordt lead ballooned to as much as 14 points on a Heimensen three that followed up four points from Karly Gustafson. The Chargers brought it back within 11 at the 4:33 mark until Faith Van Holland found the bottom of the net to spark a pair of baskets for Dordt.
With the lead holding in double-digits well into the third quarter, Macey Nielson and Van Holland each scored from three-point range to make it 55-29. Dordt held a 25-point lead going into the fourth quarter looking to secure another conference win.
Although it was only a nine-point scoring output for Dordt in the final quarter, the defense held Briar Cliff in important possessions to maintain the lead. Gustafson and Mya Chmielewski made timely free throws to stop a Charger run and help Dordt defeat Briar Cliff. The Defenders moved to 7-5 in the conference and 14-6 overall.
Dordt shot 38.8% while Briar Cliff shot 29.5%
The Defenders outrebounded the Chargers 54-33
Karly Gustafson recorded a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds
Hayden Heimensen picked up 11 points
Bailey Beckman finished with 9 points and 8 rebounds
COACH HARMSEN SAID
"I was really proud of our team on the defensive end tonight. That's an area where we're starting to buy in more and more. This team is diving into our homework and understanding how our strategy fits into the team concept. I was happy with how our girls navigated the changing lineups of Briar Cliff as well. This team is smart, they understand the improvements made from the beginning of the year to now, and that's encouraging. We were looking forward to today's game and it'll be fun to compete down in Omaha on Wednesday."
The Defenders play at College of Saint Mary on Wednesday night at 6:00 PM.