The University of Minnesota Crookston (UMC) Women’s Basketball team outscored Northern State 18-9 in the first quarter, but the offense cooled off as Northern State won 60-59 in an NSIC game played at Wachs Arena in Aberdeen, South Dakota.
Minnesota Crookston got off to a quick start as Bren Fox (Fr., Norwood Young America) made a lay-up followed by back-to-back three-pointers from Caitlin Michaelis (Sr., Marshfield, WI) giving the Golden Eagles a 9-0 lead. After the Wolves pulled within 10-5, UMC’s Paige Weakley (Jr., Kearney, MO) made a three-pointer before Isieoma Odor (R-Sr., Bloomington) scored at the rim pushing the visitor’s lead to 15-5. An Abby Guidinger (Soph., Waukesha, WI) three-pointer heading into the final minute of the quarter pushing Minnesota Crookston in front 18-7. A made jump shot from Northern State at the buzzer before the first quarter ended pulled the Wolves within 18-9 after one-quarter of play. “I thought we had a great first quarter,” said Minnesota Crookston head coach Mike Roysland. “I thought here we can kind of get going.”
Caitlin Michaelis opened the second quarter with a three-pointer for the Golden Eagles giving them a 12-point lead. Northern State answered with an 8-0 run to pull within 21-17. A pair of Steph McWilliams (Jr., Grand Forks, ND) free-throws gave the Golden Eagles a 23-17 lead. After the Wolves pulled within 23-22, Abby Guidinger connected on another three-pointer giving UMC a 26-22 lead. Northern State closed out the first half with an old-fashion three-point play to pull within 26-25 at halftime. “We had a few sloppy passes in the second quarter,” said Roysland. “There were three possessions there that were just tough points where we got them to miss the first one, but they got the second one and put the second one in. Our defense was getting the initial stops, but we they were getting the tough points or the tough rebounds. We were struggling to score it. We had just five points until Abby hit that three-pointer. Our offense was just really stagnant. You’ve got to make plays.”
The Wolves opened the third quarter with a 6-0 run to take their first lead of the night 31-26. The Wolves pushed their lead to 25-28 before an Ashley Freund (Soph., Jordan) left-wing three-pointer brought Minnesota Crookston back within 35-31. Caitlin Michaelis made another triple trimming the deficit to 37-34 with 4:47 left in the third quarter. Northern State responded with a 5-0 run to take a 41-34 lead with a 4-0 UMC run answered by another Wolves basket giving the hosts a 43-38 lead heading into the final quarter.
Northern State opened the fourth quarter with a 5-2 run to take a 48-40 lead. UMC pulled within four after a Caitlin Michaelis three-pointer trimmed their deficit down to 50-46. Minnesota Crookston utilized a 5-0 run to cut within 53-51 with 3:51 to play after a Caitlin Michaelis lay-up and free-throw. Northern State answered with a three-pointer to take a 56-51 lead with 3:37 remaining. A Steph McWilliams lay-up brought the Golden Eagles within 56-54 with 0:34 remaining. After Northern State split two free-throws, Minnesota Crookston’s Kylie Post (Fr., Corcoran) drove to the rim at the other end of the floor and score a lay-up to pull back within one. Northern State again headed to the free-throw line where the Wolves split a pair of free-throws but pulled down an offensive rebound leading to two made free-throws as Paige Cornale’s (Fr., Oak Creek, WI) buzzer-beating three-pointer wasn’t enough to avoid a 60-59 loss. “This is a tough loss, this is a disappointing loss,” summarized Roysland. “Just for the fact of the way we started the game. The opportunities were there all night long. It’s not like we were trying to change anything dramatically. We had a lot of good looks; we just didn’t finish enough of them.”
Minnesota Crookston falls to 9-6 overall and 4-4 in the NSIC. The Golden Eagles return to the court Saturday at MSU-Moorhead with tipoff at 3:30 p.m. on KROX. Northern State improves to 7-8 overall and 4-5 in conference play.
|Isieoma Odor||7||12||2 Assists|
|Abby Guidinger||6||2||2 Blocks|
|Kylie Post||4||4||4 Assists|
|For Northern State||Points|