MADISON, S.D. - No. 3 seed California State University San Marcos captured their first ever State Farm Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.) Women's Basketball Tournament championship with a 54-52 in an overtime thriller over No. 4 seed Valley City State Sunday afternoon at DSU Fieldhouse.
CSU San Marcos raised their record to 18-14. Valley City State, which played their third straight day Sunday, dropped their record to 19-14. Both teams earned an automatic bid to the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Tournament in Sioux City, Iowa on March 7-13.
Valley City State was 1-for-17 (5.9 percent) from the field as the Cougars earned the largest lead of the game at 20-6 with less than eight minutes left before intermission.
Cal State San Marcos earned a 27-18 halftime advantage. The Cougars held the Vikings to 14.3 percent from the field (4-for-28) in the first-half (CSU San Marcos was 32 percent from the field - 8-for-25).
The Cougars struggled from the field to start the second-half, missing nine straight field goals as the Vikings went on to score 13 consecutive points to gain their first lead of the game at 31-27 (13:56 left).
VCSU and CSUSM traded leads or tie the game for the rest of the second-half.
The Vikings gained a four-point lead at 47-43 with 4:16 remaining.
Cougar Gabriell Munsch made a field goal with 2:17 left in the game. Sarah Jackson added a lay-up to tie the game at 47-47 with 1:18 remaining.
Both teams were unable to score in the final 1:18 of the game.
The Cougars drained two consecutive 3-pointers from Justine Chacon to open a six-point lead in overtime (53-47). Valley City State trimmed their deficit to two points (56-54) with a minute left in the game.
The Vikings fell short as they missed a 3-pointer shot by Sierra Even as time expired.
Michel'La Logan led the Cougars with 13 points off the bench. Sarah Jackson and Sidney Dobner each had 10 points. Dobner dished out a game-high eight assists and earned eight boards.
Brittany Lehner scored 15 points for the Vikings and six rebounds for VCSU. Courtney Titus added 13 points and seve rebounds. Even had 10 points and dished out four assists. Alyssa Hummel recorded three blocked shots.
Both teams struggled from the field, shooting well below 40 percent. The Cougars shot 34.5 percent overall (19-for-55) compared to the Vikings' 31.6 percent (18-for-57).
CSU San Marcos won the rebounding battle 43-40.
VCSU committed 23 turnovers in the game, while the Cougars had 21 turnovers.
Both teams will extend their season at the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Tournament. The brackets will be determined later this week.
Nick Huntimer, Dakota State University Sports Information Director