On Nov. 12 and 13, the Red Raider men’s and women’s basketball teams competed in the Pizza Ranch Classic. The women’s team took on Valley City State University and Marian University where the Raiders came out victorious in both games. The men’s team took on Viterbo and Bellevue University where the Raiders again came out victorious in both.
For the women’s tournament, the Raiders first took on Valley City State University on day one. The Raiders held a strong lead the entire game, bringing the Raiders out on top with an 81-38 win. Sophomore, Molly Schany, scored ten first quarter points to pace the Raider offense while the Raider defense held strong against Vikings. Raider defense and offense held their strength in the second quarter. The second half of the game saw many points offensively plus a strong Raider defense to hold tight to their lead.
The Raiders women saw action again on day two against Marian University, where Northwestern saw a 78-62 win. The Knights led during the first half, but that lead did not last long. NW came out strong after half time, both offensively and defensively. The fourth quarter saw the most exciting action where junior, Maddie Jones, led the Raiders with some aid by senior, Jada Cunningham, to secure the lead and garner the win.
In the men’s tournament, day one saw NW facing off against Viterbo garnering a 96-83 victory for the Raiders. NW fought strong during the first half, leading 47-39 going into half time. The 9-0 lead early in the game by sophomore, Alex Van Kalsbeek, paved the way for the Raider victory. The Raiders continued the strong fight in the second half with the 19-5 run.
Day two saw a tough fight for the men’s team when they played Bellevue University. The 74-71 victory is the closest game so far this season for NW. The Raiders fought strong in the first half with the 42-26 lead going into half time. Van Kalsbeek took charge for the Raiders with 17 points scored in the first 20 minutes of the game. The second half saw the Bruins take the lead, keeping the game close. With less than a minute left in the game, Bellevue had a 71-70 lead over NW, but that lead was short lived when Van Kalsbeek scored the final four points of the game to give the Raiders the win.
With a successful weekend, the Raiders will enter conference play Nov. 20, where both men and women will take on the Doane Tigers at home. Women will go first beginning at 6:30 p.m. while the men follow at 8 p.m.