Muskies Drop Game to Wisconsin Lutheran Despite Second Half Scoring Run
Athletics - posted on 2/14/2007
Although the Lakeland College women's basketball team was down by 20 points with 4:13 remaining in their Northern Athletics Conference game with Wisconsin Lutheran on Wednesday, Feb. 14, the Muskies would not go down without a fight, scoring on their last nine possessions to cut the score to 73-63 with less than one minute remaining in the game.
The Muskies (14-10,11-7 NAC) would ultimately fall, 77-67, despite the efforts of sophomore guard Kasey Gussert and freshman forward Emily Agner, who scored all but two of the squad's last 22 points. Gussert knocked down three of her five 3-pointers for the game in the final four minutes, while Agner came off the bench with just over four minutes remaining to knock down a shot from behind the arc, two jump-shots and a pair of free throws for nine points.
However, Lakeland could not make up enough ground to compensate for Wisconsin Lutheran's accurate shooting in the first half, as the Warriors (14-10, 12-6 NAC) averaged 59 percent from field goal range and 60 percent from "3." They also didn't have an answer for junior forward Emily Laete, who scored a game-high 38 points for the Warriors.
"They were hitting their shots and we needed to score with them player for player, which we didn't do," said head coach April Arvan. "We needed to defend and we were giving them wide-open looks. At the same time, we didn't create wide open looks for ourselves or we just weren't hitting them."
The Muskies shot 31 percent from the field in the first half, but once again their improved second half shooting efforts would raise the team's average to 40 percent for the game.
"The care and the effort were there on our end, but our talent just didn't match that of our opponent," Arvan said. "But, we didn't give up the whole game, which is encouraging to see."
Gussert would finish with a career-high and team-high 23 points followed by freshman guard Megan Chart with 13 points on solid five of seven shooting, including hitting all three of her attempts from beyond the arc. Junior guard Brenda Paulson was the only other Muskie to reach double digits with 10 points.
"Gussert had a career game again," Arvan said. "Emily played well in her limited minutes and Terra (Hiben) did a nice job off the bench. Megan and KC Blahnik have also been steady all year, which is encouraging to see for the future."
Senior forward Jenna Boehm was hindered by double and triple teams for the majority of the game, limiting her to seven points and five rebounds and forcing the squad to rely on its outside shooting. Senior forward Danielle Duranceau came off the bench to lead the team on the glass with eight rebounds and dished out a team-high three assists.
The loss ties the squad with Marian College, whom the Muskies will face this Saturday, in the NAC standings at 11-7, meaning that Lakeland must win on Saturday to earn a spot in the six-team conference tournament.
"We're well aware of the fact that it's one and done from here on out," Arvan said. "We need to have a tough mentality and work hard to overachieve on Saturday."
Game time with Marian is set for 2 p.m. in Lakeland's Moose and Dona Woltzen Gymnasium.
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