After seven tough losses, the Dickinson State women's basketball team earned a win.
The Blue Hawks defeated Salish Kootenai College (Mont.) 96-69 in their best offensive effort of the season.
Five Blue Hawks put up 10 or more points, with junior guard Riley Helmick and sophomore guard Jennifer Burnham leading the way with 19 a piece on Friday, Nov. 10 at Scott Gymnasium.
"It was team basketball," Dickinson State head coach Liz Lewis said. "Seventeen assists, that's by far the most assists we've ever had as a team. So we're getting better everyday. We are moving in the right direction."
The Bison started with a nine-point run, forcing Lewis to call a timeout. The Blue Hawks then went on a 12-point run, capped off by a three from freshman guard Natalee Hafer to give Dickinson State the lead.
"That's frustrating to any coach to come out and be 9-0 and have to blow a time out early just to reorganize," Lewis said. "We have to learn to compete early and not wait until the fourth quarter to compete. We got to compete early and for the whole forty minutes."
At half, the home team led 41-32.
The Bison nearly caught up to the Blue Hawks after going on a 15-4 run, bringing the score to 45-44.
Following a timeout, junior forward Rojin Karahan scored to spark a nine-point Blue Hawk run.
Sophomore guard Isidora Tasovic followed with a three-pointer to secure a 50-44 lead.
"We don't have that killer instinct that you need as an athlete," Lewis said. "We wait until our backs are up against the wall before we compete. It's like we have to be forced. We need to develop that killer instinct that no matter who we're playing we're going to go out there and we're going to do what it takes to win the game."
Despite being down 65-52 after three quarters, Salish Kootenai kept fighting until the last whistle. Amberline Jones sunk one of her two three-pointers in the last quarter, ending the night with 16 points. Whitney Malatare also added 16 for Bison including four three-pointers. Braylee Stone led the way with 19 points.
The Blue Hawk's played their best in the fourth quarter, starting with an opening bucket from Karahan.
"We just came together," Tasovic said. "When we decide to play we're a lot better. Communication was much better."
Tasovic scored all of her 15 points in the latter half of the game and went 3-7 from the three-point line. She also led the team with six assists.
"We finally got into a rhythm," Lewis said. "We were pushing the ball. We were more relaxed. I don't know why it takes thirty minutes for us to get there. That's what we need to figure out."
Dickinson State 96, Salish Kootenai College 69
SKC 17 15 20 17
DSU 25 16 24 31
Total fouls: SKC 24, DSU 10. 3-point goals: SKC 9-27 (Whitney Malatare 4-11), DSU 11-28 (Riley Helmick 4-14). Rebounds: SKC 37 (Braylee Stone 9), DSU 50 (Karen Hopkins 10). Assists: SKC 15 (Malatare 4), DSU 17 (Isidora Tasovic 6). Steals: SKC 6 (Malatare 2), DSU 8 (Tasovic 4). Blocks: SKC 1 (Violet Pablo), DSU 3 (Hopkins 1, Jennifer Burnham 1, Madison Hansen 1). Turnovers: SKC 22, DSU 20.