No. 23 Dickinson State edges Bruins, 63-61

Caletria Curtis led the Bruins with 15 points, five rebounds, and three steals.
Caletria Curtis led the Bruins with 15 points, five rebounds, and three steals.

Box Score
NSAA Standings

BELLEVUE, Neb. -- In a game that featured five ties and nine lead changes, the 23rd-ranked Dickinson State University women's basketball pulled out a hard-fought, 63-61, victory over Bellevue University in North Star Athletic Association action Friday night at the Gordon Lozier Athletic Center. 

The Bruins fell to 13-12 on the season and 6-5 in the NSAA with the loss. DSU improved to 19-5 overall and 12-1 in league play. 

Caletria Curtis led the Bruins with 15 points, five rebounds, and three steals. Ryleigh McCartney added 13 points, four rebounds, three assists and three steals.

Ashley Bentz-Laub paced the DSU offense with 18 points. Megan Klein recorded a double-double with 13 points and 13 rebounds. 

The Bluehawks raced out to a 10-point lead in the first four minutes of the game, nailing 4-of-5 3-pointers to take a 14-4 advantage. A four-point play by Angeliece Tucker highlighted an 8-0 BU run as the Bruins closed to within two points before a triple by Bentz-Laub gave DSU a 21-16 lead after the first quarter. 

The Bruins closed the second quarter on an 8-0 run to grab a 32-29 halftime advantage. After DSU shot 62.5 percent from behind the arc in the opening quarter, the Bluehawks went 0-4 in the second stanza. 

McCartney led BU in the first half with 10 points, three rebounds and a pair of assists. Bentz-Laub paced the Bluehawks with 11 first-half points. 

Neither team could establish control in the third quarter as both squads shot under 32 percent from the field. The two teams entered the final quarter deadlocked at 40-all.

After Cassidy Hubbs' short jumper gave BU a two-point lead to start the fourth quarter, the Bluehawks used an 11-2 run to grab a seven-point margin at 51-44 with 6:20 left in the game. The Bruins countered with nine-consecutive points to take a 53-51 lead at the 4:50 mark. DSU responded with eight-straight points to gain a 59-53 edge with just under three minutes left in the contest. 

Two free throws by Curtis and a steal by Tucker and layup by Shanae Collins drew the Bruins to within two at 59-57 at the 2:12 mark. Four-straight points by Curtis tied the game at 61-61 with just over a minute remaining. 

A driving layup by Lorna Shepherd with seven seconds left gave DSU a 63-61 lead and Curtis missed a short jumper at the buzzer to give the Bluehawks the two-point victory. 

The Bruins will host Mayville State University at 3 p.m. on Saturday (Feb. 4) at the Gordon Lozier Athletic Center.