KANSAS CITY, MO- Dickinson State looks to avenge early season loss to Jamestown in North Star matchup on Friday, February 17th in Scott Gymnasium at 5:30 PM (MDT).
By Nikki Sherrill, Athletic Communications and Media Intern
Photo provided by Dickinson State Athletics
NAIA Network Division II Women's Basketball Game of the Week, presented by Stretch Internet
No. 11 Jamestown (N.D.) (21-4, 14-0 NSAA) at No. 21 Dickinson State (N.D.) (21-5, 13-1 NSAA)
Friday, Feb. 17 | 5:30 pm MST | Dickinson, N.D.
Live Video – Powered by Stretch Internet
• In the last week of regular season play before conference tournaments start to heat up, many conferences will see the race to regular-season titles speed up. In the North Star Athletic Association (NSAA), the top two programs in the conference will face-off Friday in what could determine who gets the crown. No. 21 Dickinson State (N.D.) will play host to No. 11 and in-state foe Jamestown (N.D.) in a battle for top position in the NSAA in the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball Game of the Week, presented by Stretch Internet.
• Having already met once this season back in December with Jamestown taking the victory 74-64, Dickinson State is looking for revenge and to avoid a sweep from the Jimmies for the first time in the history between the two. In the NSAA's most recent standings, the 21-4 Jimmies hold the top spot above Dickinson State who owns a 21-5 record. Jamestown is the only undefeated squad in the NSAA.
• In the all-time meeting history, the Jimmies have been dominate over the Bluehawks as they hold a 22-3 advantage. The last win for Dickinson State came back in 2009 when it stole a 77-68 victory over the Jimmies in the regular season.
• The last meeting with the two teams saw the Jimmies climb back to take the win after falling behind in the first quarter. From there, Jamestown cruised to a ten-point victory led by Kyra Dewald who netted 27 points, going 11-of-18 from the floor and hitting five 3-pointers. The key player in that game for the Bluehawks was Megan Klein who scored a team-high 22 points to go with 16 rebounds.
• Dewald will once again be the player to watch for the Jimmies as she ranks No. 4 in the NAIA in steals per game (3.5) and total steals (87). Aside from her strong defense, Dewald leads her Jimmies in points as she averages 16.28 per game. As a team, Jamestown is offensively sound with a No. 4 ranking in both 3-point field goals made per game (9.8) and scoring margin (26.3), while also ranking No. 5 in scoring offense per game (84.2).
• Dickinson State, whose only loss in the NSAA this season has come at the hands of Jamestown, will look to Klein to come through again against the Jimmies with her team-best 12.63 points per game, 14.2 rebounds per game and 1.7 steals. In the NAIA, Klein holds three No. 1 rankings individually – defensive rebounds per game (9.4), total rebounds per game (14.3) and total rebounds (343). She also comes in at No. 3 in offensive rebounds per game with 4.8. Defensively, the Bluehawks better the Jimmies on paper as they rank No. 7 in assist to turnover ratio (1.2), No. 11 in blocks per game (4.0) and No. 12 in both total blocks (105) and field goal percentage defense (.358).
• Jamestown, which has taken the past three NSAA regular season titles, is looking to get back to the NAIA DII Women's Basketball National Championship for the sixth-consecutive year. Last season the Jimmies were knocked out in the first round when Oregon Tech earned its first-ever win at the national championship, 71-64. Dickinson State also could not get past the first round last season as they fell to Indiana Wesleyan 68-58 in its first appearance at the national championship since 2009.
• The 2016-17 season marks the second year for the NAIA Network Division II Women's Basketball Game of the Week, presented by Stretch Internet. These contests highlight member schools that utilize live Stretch Internet – the NAIA's video partner for 22-of-23 national championships – as their online video partner. At least one of two schools in the Game of the Week is a Stretch Internet client.
• The NAIA Network (www.NAIANetwork.com) is the official video-streaming portal of the NAIA.
Around NAIA Division II Women's Basketball
(Through games played on Feb. 14)
• Extending one of the program's best seasons in history, the Fighting Saints of St. Francis (Ill.) secured the No. 1 ranking for the fourth-straight edition after capturing eight first-place votes. The Fighting Saints possess an NAIA-best 27-0 record, one of only two undefeated programs left (Southeastern (Fla.) 22-0). Last season, St. Francis was knocked out in the first-round of the NAIA National Championship.
• The national champions from last season are still in the hunt to repeat as Marian (Ind.) sits at No. 4 this week with a 23-3 record. The Knights are in control of the Crossroads League with a 15-1 conference record with its only loss in league play coming to Indiana Wesleyan in December. The red banner in 2016 represents the first-ever title in program history after defeating Southern Oregon, 59-48.
• No. 2 Concordia (Neb.) suffered its first Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) loss when it fell to conference foe Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.), 75-53. Before the loss, the Bulldogs were riding a 24-game win-streak after dropping its first contest to defending national champion Marian. Concordia now holds a 17-1 conference record and has clinched at least a share of the regular-season crown.
• Only four conference remain with an undefeated leader in the last week of regular-season play – Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference, North Star Athletic Association, The Sun Conference and Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference.
• Friends' (Kan.) head coach RaeAnne Boothe earned her 100th conference win as her Falcons defeated Southwestern (Kan.) 71-50 last Saturday. Boothe has been with Friends for seven seasons now as she hit the milestone. The Falcons have earned an automatic berth to the National Championship after earning the regular-season title for the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference.
• The GPAC has shown its dominance as a league this season as it is currently 82-23 against non-conference opponents. The GPAC currently has four programs in the latest Coaches' Top 25 Poll. For the complete release, click here.
• NAIA Division II's top-scorer, Shann Sellers of Friends, was given the 10th National Player of the Week honor this season. Sellers broke the NAIA DII record for steals in a season as she earned her 162nd of the year – two better than the previous record from 1993. Sellers ranks No. 1 in DII in points per game (24.1), steals per game (6.0), total steals (162) and total scoring (652). For the complete release, click here.
• Every team in Division II has at least one win to its name.
• This week's Top 25 matchups:
o Monday – No. 1 St Francis (Ill.) def. No. 13 IU Northwest (Ind.), 82-56
o Wednesday – (RV) Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) at No. 1 St. Francis (Ill.)
o Wednesday – No. 2 Concordia (Neb.) at No. 10 Hastings (Neb.)
o Wednesday – No. 6 Davenport (Mich.) at No. 25 Siena Heights (Mich.)
o Wednesday – (RV) Northwestern (Iowa) at No. 12 Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.)
o Saturday – No. 16 Cardinal Stritch (Wis.) at No. 3 Saint Xavier (Ill.)
o Saturday – (RV) Northwest Christian (Ore.) at No. 5 Southern Oregon
o Saturday – No. 6 Davenport (Mich.) at No. 18 Indiana Tech
o Saturday – No. 11 Jamestown (N.D.) at (RV) Valley City State (N.D.)
• For a complete list of the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball statistical leaders, click here.
• Since 1998, Sioux City, Iowa, has been the home of the NAIA Division II Women's Basketball National Championship. The 26th annual 32-team, single-elimination championship takes place at the Tyson Events Center from March 8-14. For more information on the 2017 national championship, click here.