The DCB Women's Basketball Team opened their 2019-20 season with 3 games in the 2nd annual MonDak Pre-Season Tournament held at Four Bears Casino in New Town, ND. The Ladyjacks faced some tough league competition with only 2 returners off last year's team and held their own, winning on the last day of the tournament.
On Friday, DCB faced defending league champion and NJCAA D1 national tournament particpant Miles CC. The Ladyjacks only trailed Miles by 4 at halftime and by 10 at the end of the 3rd quarter before Miles pulled away. Coach Wayne Johnson had good things to say about the game. "We played pretty respectable for the first three periods but their defensive pressure wore us down in the final quarter. We had trouble containing their point guard and it created a lot of rotation for us defensively. Rotation often leads to difficulty rebounding the ball and that was the case today. We got killed on the boards and that was the most significant factor in the outcome. I thought we did a good job of getting to the free throw line and converting in the first half but couldn't capitalize in the second. We shot a solid 41% from the field, 33% from the three line, and 72% from the free throw line in the first half to only trail by 4 points at the break but dismal shooting in the second half helped them blow the game open. It was a good initiation for our freshmen and hopefully we learned a lot. I was happy with the fight and overall effort. That should bode well for the future."
On Saturday, the Ladyjacks took on Dawson CC. DCB, after struggling in the first quarter, played tough backetball in the next two periods before Dawson, like Miles the day before, pulled away in the 4th. From Coach Johnson: " Tough day for our Ladyjacks. Our first half shooting performance may be a record low for our ladies. We were 7 of 37 from the field for 19% and 1 for 19 from the three point line for 5%. In spite of that shooting performance we put together a solid second quarter to at least stay in striking distance. The biggest positive statistically for us in the game was our ability to get the free throw line 32 times and convert with a solid percentage. Unfortunately making only 14 field goals will not get the job done at this level. We did a better job on the boards and handled the ball satisfactorily in the first half. The 4th quarter again hurt us but the Pioneers were in control most of the game. We still had good fight to the end and that is a good sign."
Sunday, DCB put together a very good performance, defeating Williston State College 65-50. After trailing by 2 points at the end of the first quarter, The Ladyjacks responded the next two quarters with a strong effort to earn their first win of the season. Coach Johnson was pleased by DCB's performance. " Great effort by our Ladyjacks that ended with a very deserving result. Our ladies had an excellent performance on the defensive end of the court and on the boards. Our offensive play was much sharper than our first two games with some solid execution. I was very pleased with how the ladies handled and bounced back from a slow start. We trailed 14-2 and then 16-4 before we regrouped. We made a push to get the game tight at the end of the first quarter and took the lead early in the second. After that slow start in the first five minutes of the game we outscored the Tetons by a 63-36 score. They have a nice team but had a tough shooting night. I thought our defensive effort had a lot to do with that plus the fact that we limited their second chance points damage by controlling our defensive boards. A significant factor in the change of momentum in the game was the spirited play of our bench. Our five ladies who started struggled coming out of the blocks and our bench came through with a game changing effort. From that point on everyone pitched in to contribute to the outcome. If we want to become champions at the end of the season we will need that kind of continued total team effort."
DCB will be on the road again on Wednesday, traveling to Belcourt and a date with Turtle Mountain Community College. The Ladyjacks will then travel to Devil's Lake, ND this weekend to play two very tough teams, Gillette College (WY) and Iowa Western CC in the Sleep Inn Shootout hosted by Lake Region State College. Their home openers will be Friday, November 15th and Saturday, November 16th in the DCB Classic, back after a year's hiatus. You can see the complete DCB schedule at this link.
It looks like another exciting season for Ladyjacks' basketball is coming up, hope you can make it to the Woodshed to check out the action.