MADISON, S.D. - Dakota Wesleyan outhit Dakota State 73-56 for a 3-2 match thriller victory in the battle of in-state volleyball rivals Wednesday night at DSU Fieldhouse. The Tigers handed DSU their fourth straight defeat by the scores of 25-18, 21-25, 25-17, 23-25 and 19-17.
Dakota State, which concluded their seven-match home stand with a 3-4 record, dropped their overall record to 8-11. Dakota Wesleyan, member of the Great Plains Athletic Conference, ended their seven-match losing streak to raise their record to 4-14.
DWU raced to a 14-5 lead in the first set. With the Tigers leading at 20-12, the Trojans scored five straight points to trim their deficit to 20-17. DWU secured the first set with a 5-1 closing run (25-19) to gain a 1-0 match lead.
Dakota State hit .360 in the second set to earn a 25-21 second set win to earn a 1-1 match tie.
With DSU leading 13-12 in the third set, the Tigers used an 8-0 scoring run to gain a 20-12 lead. DWU went on to win 25-17 to earn a 2-1 match lead. Dakota Wesleyan hit .407 in the set compared to the Trojans' .030.
DSU won the fourth set by the score of 25-23 to force the fifth and deciding set. The Trojans recorded a .316 hitting percentage, while DWU had a .214 hitting efficiency.
Dakota State jumped to a 4-1 lead in the deciding set. Dakota Wesleyan answered back with a 4-1 scoring run to tie the fifth set at 5-5. DSU had chances for match point at 14-13 and 15-14, but the Tigers scored two straight points to gain a 16-15 lead. The Trojans responded back with two straight points for a 17-16 lead with their third chance at match point. Danielle Bird smashed three straight kills to give DWU a 19-17 victory and a 3-2 match win.
Kristen DiPaola had 28 kills and three service aces for DSU. Allison Thielsen added 11 kills. Stacey Schuller produced 43 set assists, which moved her to the third most career assists in DSU record book with 2051 assists.
Five Trojan players recorded in double digits digs. Mandi Atkins had 22 digs. Katie Green added 12 digs. Schuller recorded 11 digs. Thielsen and DiPaola each had 10 digs.
DiPaola and Taylor Mosco each had four block assists for Dakota State. Thielsen and Caitlin Pick each added three block assists.
Bird led DWU's offensive attack with 24 kills. Elizabeth Mahsem added 14 kills with a hitting percentage of .423. Sarah Kruse had 12 kills. Briana Jung recorded 46 assists, while Kelli Swenson added 11 assists.
Katie Lindow led the Tigers' defense with 24 digs. Jung added 19 digs. Maggie Stehly had 15 digs.
Mahsem recorded a solo block and five block assists for Dakota Wesleyan. Bird added two solo blocks and four block assists.
Dakota Wesleyan recorded a .272 hitting percentage in the match compared to the Trojans' .161. DSU committed 29 attack errors, while DWU had 27 attack errors.
Dakota State recorded six service aces and a service percentage of .931. The Tigers recorded two service aces and a service percentage of .920.
DWU had 83 digs compared to DSU 69 digs.
The Tigers recorded 11 team blocks, while the Trojans had seven team blocks in the match.
Dakota State will attempt to end their losing streak on Saturday. The Trojans travel to Morris, Minn. to play in the Minnesota-Morris triangular. DSU will play a pair of opponents from the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference (UMAC), starting with Northland (Wis.) at 1 p.m. The Trojans face the host-team Minnesota-Morris at 3 p.m. All matches will be held at the Physical Education Center.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director