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Ahearn Flourishes in Dakota’s Victory Over Sioux Falls

Dakota 106, Sioux Falls 91

SIOUX FALLS, S.D., Jan. 24, 2009 -- Blake Ahearn registered 30 points as the Dakota Wizards cruised past their familiar rivals, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, 106-91, on Saturday night.

Dakota, which remains in second place and just one game behind the Iowa Energy for first in the Central Division, held Sioux Falls to just 10 fourth-quarter points.

Richard Hendrix and Rod Benson combined for 31 rebounds for the Wizards, who won the battle on the glass, 49-36. Dakota also did a stellar job on the free throw line, hitting 27 of its 31 attempts and all 10 in the final period.

“I thought our interior people tonight were the key to the game,” Wizards head coach Duane Ticknor said. “Benson came off the bench and had 15 rebounds, and I think our bigs did a great job and made the difference more than the perimeter did tonight.”

Maurice Baker posted 18 points for the Wizards, while Renaldo Major and Hendrix each added 17.

Glen McGowan paced the Skyforce with 16 points, while Kasib Powell had 13 and Bobby Jones, Michael Joiner and Frank Williams each scored 12.

Dakota will look to build of this impressive effort when it visits the Albuqerque Thunderbirds on Thursday, while Sioux Falls clashes with the Energy in Iowa that same night.