Muskies Prevail over Warriors in Four OTs
Athletics - posted on 1/19/2008
The Lakeland College women's basketball team triumphed over Wisconsin Lutheran College, 100-94, in a nail-biting Northern Athletics Conference thriller that stretched into four overtime periods on Saturday, Jan. 19, in Milwaukee, Wis.
Although the game was a sloppy one, as the Muskies (7-9, 4-5 NAC) committed 28 turnovers with the Warriors racking up 29, both teams battled to the end in each overtime period, often making shots in the final seconds.
"It was an ugly game with all of the turnovers, but we didn't give up," said Lakeland head coach Teri Johnson. "Things were close in every one of the overtimes, but our ability to make free throws when we need to really helped us."
Freshman guard Mary Dennewitz did just that for the Muskies, as she hit an essential free throw with just three seconds remaining in regulation to knot the score up at 56, sending the game into the first overtime. Dennewitz would keep her team alive once again at the end of the first OT as well, hitting a jumper with two seconds remaining to keep the game in a stalemate at 65 points apiece.
But, Wisconsin Lutheran refused to give up either, as the Warriors' Kristen Dillon became the hero in the second and third periods of overtime with last-second baskets.
By the final OT, the Muskies were finally able to build a lead thanks to key made shots from senior guard Brenda Paulson and sophomore guard Megan Chart, as each knocked down a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws to seal the win and hand the Warriors their first NAC loss of the season.
"It was one of the best games I have ever seen," Johnson said. "Either team really deserved to win. Mary and Brenda really stepped up big-time, and Megan Chart made some clutch free throws. We did a great job of finding the people who were 'on' offensively and making sure we were using that to our advantage."
Lakeland finished with five players in double-figures, led by Paulson with a career-high 30 points as she shot 50 percent from the field and made all nine of her free throws. Dennewitz followed with 23 points, while senior guard Peggy Keiper tallied 17 points. Sophomores Terra Hiben and Kayla Moffatt led the Muskies on the glass with nine apiece.
Given the thrilling end result, it is hard to believe that both teams suffered a lack-luster first half offensively. Both squads struggled with their shooting, as the Muskies shot 20.7 percent to the Warriors' 30.3 percent, but Lakeland was able to close the first half with a slim lead, 25-24.
The Muskies picked up their attack somewhat in the second half as they battled for the lead, then shot an improved 40 percent from the field in overtime to go along with a shining 82 percent effort from the charity stripe for the game.
Lakeland will look to snag another NAC win on Tuesday, Jan. 22, as they face a tough Edgewood College squad on the road.
"This game will give us a boost of confidence, but we have to put both halves together if we want to get a win next week," Johnson said.
Game time at Edgewood is set for 7 p.m. in Madison, Wis.
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