The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

View this profile on Instagram

The Trend (@thetrendusao) • Instagram photos and videos


Post-Season Run Hits Abrupt End in South Dakota

Laura Barrios Bardi
In one of the last home games of the season, Trinitee Alexander throws her arms up on defense.

USAO’s women’s basketball team (19-11, 15-7 SAC) was selected to the NAIA National Championship Tournament where the team was the 13th seed. The Drovers competed against the 4th seed Dakota State University (DSU) Trojans (26-6, 11-1 NSAA) in the first round of the tournament. 

The first quarter of action was one to forget for USAO as they were outscored 25-11. The Drovers held their own, but the six turnovers and ten missed shots from USAO prevented the team from being productive. The Trojans saw their opportunity to charge as they made five baskets from behind the arc.  

The second quarter started to look as if DSU was going to blow the Drovers out of the water, as they were leading 33-13 after a couple of minutes of play. Junior forward Trinitee Alexander came off the bench and attempted to close the gap, putting up ten points, three rebounds, and a steal. Her efforts couldn’t keep USAO from turning over the ball as they had four more in the quarter. The Trojans continued to hold strong in battle as they put up 24 points in the second quarter. Their efforts pushed the lead away from USAO 49-32 at halftime.  

The third quarter started cold for the Drovers as they struggled to put points on the scoreboard. After only scoring six points halfway through the third, Alexander pushed senior guard Toni Fortune and junior forward Crystal Ortiz to make some splash plays for the team. The trio combined for six points, three assists, one rebound, and one steal in just one minute of action in the third. The team’s chemistry did not last long though, and DSU remained calm and collected on their conquest. The Trojans kept possession of the ball as they had ten rebounds for the quarter. Although they only went 2-7 on their three-point shots, DSU managed to hit 20 points and kept a sound lead of 69-47 going into the final quarter. 

The Drovers faced a 22-point deficit at the start of the fourth quarter, with senior forward Lainey Morrow attempting to lead a comeback. Morrow finished the fourth quarter with five points, two rebounds, and a steal. Ortiz followed her efforts as she had four points and three rebounds for USAO. Although they tried to put themselves back into the game, DSU kept their pace as they had done the entire game. The Trojans continued to play as a methodical unit and ended the game in their favor with a victory of 86-69. This loss stopped the Drover’s run in the tournament and ended their post-season efforts.  

DSU led in all three shooting accuracy statistics, as they made 56.9% from the field, 35.7% from the charity stripe, and 76.9% from behind the arc. In comparison, USAO shot 43.5%, 27.8%, and 71.4% in the respective categories. The Trojans snatched up 34 rebounds compared to the Drovers 29. Although the Drovers had ten turnovers in the first half, they still managed to have fewer than their competitor with 15 on the night versus 16 from the Trojans. 

Although she wasn’t on the starting lineup, Alexander came prepared for the game as she scored 19 points along with six rebounds and two assists. Ortiz was the next leading scoring for the Drovers as she had 14 points and led the team with seven rebounds. She also added a steal and assist to her stat sheet. Morrow was the final player from USAO to hit double-digit points with 13 for the night and added three rebounds, two steals, and one assist. 

This year’s team featured four seniors as guard Jordan Bloomfield, guard B.B. Polk, Fortune, and Morrow played their last minutes of basketball for the Drovers. 

The Drovers will begin their 2024-2025 season in November of this year.  


Gary Jackson is a third-year communication major at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

Ray Thomas-Lapham
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Gary Jackson
Gary Jackson, Managing Editor
Gary is a fourth-year communication major from Kingston. He works as a resident assistant (RA). Gary began writing for The Trend in January 2022, and has interned with the Madill Record and Marietta Monitor newspapers. When Gary isn’t attending class and working, you can watch him making the game-winning catch at the ultimate frisbee game, hanging out with friends, or visiting with his family. Experience with The Trend: Managing Editor: May 2024 - present Sports Editor: Nov. 2023 - Apr. 2024 Senior Writer: Dec. 2022 - Nov. 2023 Contributing Writer: Jan. 2022 - Dec. 2022
Laura Barrios Bardi
Laura Barrios Bardi, Contributing Photographer
Laura Barrios Bardi a third-year art major from El Paso, TX. Laura currently works for USAO's Sports Information Department as a photographer. She is also a member of USAO's track and field team. Her hobbies include stargazing, spending time with friends, and working towards elevating her photography skills.   Experience with The Trend: Contributing Photographer: Nov. 2022 - present