Jessi Wiedemann (Palatine, Ill./Fremd) recorded a career-high 17 points Tuesday, but the Coyotes shot 58% from the field as they claimed an 81-70 victory at the ARC.
The game started with a stellar shooting display from both teams as Valpo made its first four shots and South Dakota opened 5-for-5. Senior Charae Richardson (Lafayette, Ind./Jefferson [Vincennes]) provided the Crusaders with their first six points for the second game in a row as she drained a pair of treys. Wiedemann followed suit with a three of her own before Abby Dean (Carmel, Ind./Carmel) registered four of her 15 points. The Brown and Gold held an 18-13 lead after six minutes of play.
The two teams traded leads for the next ten minutes as neither squad could build an advantage greater than four. South Dakota finally pulled ahead by nine with 1:30 to go in the opening half on a second-chance three-pointer from Madeleine White. The Coyotes led 43-36 at the break.
The Crusaders assembled a 6-0 run right out of the locker room to slice the deficit to one. South Dakota responded with a 10-2 run of its own. Lisa Loeffler scored six of her eight points during the three-and-a-half minute rush that put the visitors back ahead by nine.
Valpo kept it to a single-digit game until the final two minutes when South Dakota put points on the scoreboard on seven consecutive possessions. The Coyotes boasted a 35-25 rebounding advantage as they received 24 bench points.
In just her second game back from a hand injury, Jessica Carr (Arcadia, Ind./Arcadia) dropped in twelve points and dished out four assists.
Richardson ended the day with 13 points while Dean shot 5-of-11 from the floor as part of her 15-point afternoon.
The Crusaders finished with four players in double digits for the first time since their 74-50 win over Chicago State at the Toledo Invite. As a team, they sunk a season-high 10 three-pointers. Their 13 turnovers were the second-fewest committed thus far.
Valparaiso (2-10) will close out the non-conference portion of its schedule Saturday when the Tulsa Golden Hurricane (5-5) host the Brown and Gold at the Donald W. Reynolds Center. Tipoff is slated for 2:30 pm CT. Links for the live audio and live stats will be available at ValpoAthletics.com.