Taylor Storms Back to Knock Off No. 9 Dakota Wesleyan


PHOENIX, Ariz. – Trailing 55-48 with 7:47 remaining in the game, the Taylor women’s basketball team ripped off 15-straight points over the next five and a half minutes to take a 63-55 lead, before holding on over the final stretch to knock off No. 9 Dakota Wesleyan, 66-61, Saturday afternoon to wrap up the Arizona Christian Classic.


The Trojans used a 9-0 run in the first period to turn an early, 9-5 deficit into a 14-9 advantage and stayed in front until Dakota Wesleyan (13-3) knocked down three triples midway through the second quarter to go up, 26-21 at the 4:09 mark. TU responded with a hoop-and-harm by Kendall Bradbury and a three-pointer by Aubrey Wright to regain a one-point edge, before DWU recorded an 8-2 spurt to give the Tigers a 34-29 lead at halftime.


TU trailed by as many as nine points, 43-34, at the halfway point of the third period, but another Bradbury and-one, followed by a Cassidy Wyse trey pulled the Trojans within one possession at 43-40 with 3:55 to go in the stanza, before DWU closed the third with a 50-45 lead.


Dakota Wesleyan opened the fourth quarter with a triple to extend its advantage to 53-45, but Wright matched with a three-pointer of her own to bring the Trojans back to within five. The Tigers then added two points at the free throw line at the 7:47 mark to set up the pivotal TU comeback that secured the Trojans’ fourth win over a ranked foe and second over a top-10 team this season.


Taylor posted a 44.7-percent (21-of-47) to 36.2-percent (21-of-58) shooting advantage from the floor on the evening, countering Dakota Wesleyan’s 36-29 rebounding margin, including a 16-7 edge on the offensive glass.


Bradbury posted game-highs of 20 points and seven rebounds to lead the Trojans, while Wright notched a career-high 18 points on an efficient six-of-seven (85.7 percent) from the field and a perfect three-for-three from downtown in the top-10 win.


Wyse contributed nine points and four rebounds and Josie Cobb tallied six points, five rebounds and three assists. Abby Buchs added five points and five boards and Becca Buchs chipped in eight points, three rebounds and two steals to aid the TU upset.


RV Taylor (10-6, 3-1 CL) will return to the hardwood on Wednesday, January 3, for its first Crossroads League matchup of the 2018 calendar year, as the Trojans hit the road to take on Huntington (9-6, 2-2 CL) at 6:00 pm.