FARGO, N.D. (NDSU Athletics) -- The North Dakota State women's basketball team hit six free throws in the final :08 Sunday afternoon, as the Bison beat New Hampshire 56-51 at the Scheels Center inside the Sanford Health Athletic Complex.
NDSU held an early 4-2 lead on back-to-back layups by Emily Dietz, but the Wildcats answered with an 8-0 run in a 2:13 span to take a 10-4 lead with 4:52 to play in the opening quarter. The Bison responded with a 10-0 run over a 3:59 span, taking a 14-10 lead on a layup by Danneka Voegeli with 8:17 left in the second quarter. This time it was New Hampshire that answered with a 10-0 run, as an and-one by Kari Brekke with 5:33 left in the half gave the Wildcats a 20-14 lead. New Hampshire took a 27-23 lead to the locker rooms at halftime.
Neither team hit a 3-pointer in the first half, but that quickly changed in the second half as Michelle Gaislerova went on a 9-4 run of her own to start the second half with three 3-pointers to give the Bison a 32-31 lead with 5:51 left in the quarter. The Wildcats responded with six-straight points, but the Bison scored eight of the final 12 points of the quarter in a 3:35 span. The Wildcats led 41-40 going into the fourth quarter.
Brekke tied the game on a free throw with 7:05 to play at 42-42 before the Bison took the lead for good. Voegeli hit a layup with 6:53 to play, as the Bison never trailed again after the bucket. The layup was the start of six-straight points by Voegeli. The Wildcats cut the lead to one with 3:02 to play, but neither team scored again until Rylee Nudell hit a pair of free throws with :08 to play. The Bison hit six free throws in the final :08 to seal the win.
The Bison were 18-of-53 (34%) from the field and 4-of-14 (28.6%) from downtown. New Hampshire was 17-of-51 (33.3%) from the floor and 0-for-5 from beyond the arc. The Bison were 16-of-25 (64%) at the free throw line, while the Wildcats were 17-of-22 (77.3%) at the charity stripe. The Bison had a 43-32 advantage on the glass, while the NDSU bench outscored New Hampshire's 18-0.
Voegeli and Gaislerova led four Bison in double figures with 16 points apiece, a career-high for Voegeli. Dietz and Nudell each finished with 10 points. Ashley Storey led the Wildcats with 16 points. Voegeli had a game-high 11 rebounds for the first Bison double-double of the season. Marina Fernandez tied a career-high with seven rebounds, while Nudell grabbed six boards. Tyrah Spencer had a career-high three blocks, while Fernandez tied a career-high with two. Nudell tied a career-high with five assists, while Spencer had four. Fernandez tied a career-high with two steals.
NDSU (2-1) returns to action on Saturday, as the Bison travel to Wisconsin (1-0). The game is scheduled to start at 12 p.m. at the Kohl Center.