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Waldorf to face No. 9 Jamestown in NSAA Tournament quarterfinal

waldorf-warriors-outline_1By Aaron Schneider

JAMESTOWN, N.D. – The Waldorf College women’s basketball team is scheduled to face the University of Jamestown in Wednesday’s North Star Athletic Association (NSAA) Tournament quarterfinal.
Jamestown (26-4) is ranked No. 9 in the latest National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division II poll and tips off with the Warriors (2-23) at 7 p.m. The Jimmies won 89-53 earlier this season when the two teams met during the Waldorf Classic on Nov. 28.
Jamestown brings an attack that ranks among the nation’s leaders from both ends of the floor. The Jimmies, who are riding a 12-game winning streak, are currently 14th in the country in scoring with 77.07 points a game and 18th in points allowed (60.24 PPG).
“We are the underdog in the first round-game against Jamestown,” Waldorf coach Katie Schutjer said. “We are going to have to shoot well and play good, aggressive defense to put ourselves in a position to be in the ball game.”
The top-seeded Jimmies won the regular-season conference title with a 12-0 league record this year. They are looking to repeat as NSAA Tournament champions and build on last season’s national tournament quarterfinals appearance.
“Jamestown is a very athletic and a veteran team that has experience playing in a conference tournament,” Schutjer said. “However, I have no doubt in my mind that we can make it a ball game.”
Samantha Birkes leads eighth-seeded Waldorf in scoring this season with 11.8 points a game. The 5-foot-9 freshman guard from Sioux City knocked down 109-of-283 shots (38.5 percent) from the field and hit 36-of-107 attempts (33.6 percent) from 3-point range.
Freshman Ameh Ogbemudia has averaged 9.2 points a game for the Warriors this season. The 6-foot center from St. Francis, Minnesota also tops the team with 24 blocked shots.
Freshman Taylor Fricke has pulled down a team-high 131 rebounds this season and is averaging 5.7 boards. The Gilman native has knocked down 25-of-73 (34.8 percent) shots from the perimeter.
Jessica Buck powers Jamestown’s offense and ranks 15th in the nation with 18.6 points a game. Buck was selected as a first-team All-American during the 2014-15 season. Other contributors for the Jimmies include Kyra Dewald (11.8 PPG) and Taylor Hammer (9.1 PPG).
Despite being a team with nine underclassmen, Waldorf has put together promising performances against powerhouse opponents this season. The Warriors are ready to continue bringing their hardworking mentality as they square off with Jamestown.
“We have had a few big time games this year that if we could have done just a few more things right, we could have won,” Schutjer said. “It’s going to take putting together a complete 40 minute game, but our young team is very capable of doing it.”
NSAA Women’s Basketball Quarterfinals – Wednesday, Feb. 24
  • Quarterfinal #1:  No. 8 Waldorf at No. 1 Jamestown – 7 p.m.
  • Quarterfinal #2:  No. 5 Dakota State University (14-15) at No. 4 Mayville State University (15-12) – 7 p.m.
  • Quarterfinal #3:  No. 6 Presentation College (6-19) at No. 3 Valley City State University (17-9) – 7 p.m.
  • Quarterfinal #4:  No. 7 Viterbo University (6-22) at No. 2 Dickinson State University (21-7) – 8 p.m. (CST)/7 p.m. (MST)
NSAA Women’s Basketball Semifinals – Friday, Feb. 26
  • Semifinal #5:  Quarterfinal 1 winner vs. Quarterfinal 2 winner at higher seed – TBA
  • Semifinal #6:  Quarterfinal 3 winner vs. Quarterfinal 4 winner at higher seed – TBA
NSAA Women’s Basketball Championship – Sunday, Feb. 28
  • Game #7:  Semifinals winners at highest seed – TBA