USD women fall short against Mavericks

USD women fall short against Mavericks Nebraska-Omaha rallied past The University of South Dakota 81-76 in North Central Conference women's basketball in the DakotaDome on Saturday night.

Early on both teams traded baskets and freshman Krista Orsack's 3-pointer gave USD a 9-8 lead. But Nebraska-Omaha's Andi Sutherland answered with consecutive 3-point baskets for a 14-9 lead.

Orsack hit her second 3-point basket to draw USD within 17-14. The Mavericks jumped to a 25-16 lead on a jumper by Sara Peterson. Orsack hit her third 3-point basket as the Coyotes closed the gap to 28-24.

The Mavericks hit eight of 17 3-point baskets for a torrid 47 percent in the opening half. Jennifer Mitchell hit two 3-point baskets as the Mavericks jumped ahead 34-27 in the first half. A jumper by Erin Wessling to go up 36-27 with 4:47 to play.

A Mitchell layup and a jumper by Tanya Hammes moved the lead to 40-29 at 2:32 of the first half. But USD went on a 6-0 run, including a jumper by Heather Nelson as the Coyotes stayed close at halftime, trailing just 40-35.

While the Mavericks hit 16 of 31 field goals, the Coyotes' season-long shooting woes continued. The Coyotes were just 13 of 36 for field goals. In the opening half, Orsack led the Coyotes with 10 points while Kelly Gese had 8 points. Mitchell scored 14 and Sutherland had 9 points to lead the Mavericks.

While Nebraska-Omaha maintained the lead for the first nine minutes of the second half, the margin shifted from 3 to 8 points. A 3-pointer by Wessling gave the Mavericks a 43-35 lead at the 19:29 mark of the second half.

Two free throws by Julia Frie cut the Maverick lead to 45-40. Then, the Coyotes took off on a 10-5 run, keyed by 3-pointers from both Frie and Nelson to draw even 50-50.

After Sutherland hit another 3-pointer to give the Mavericks a 55-52 lead, the Coyotes took control, outscoring the Mavericks 10-4 for a 65-59 lead. Gese had 8 points during that run.

A layup by Nelson gave the Coyotes a 71-65 lead with 5:25 left. However, consecutive 3-point baskets by Sutherland and Peterson tied the score at 71-71 with 4:13 to play.

The Mavericks regained the lead after Peterson hit a jumper for a 73-71. Then, Anne Bomstad hit a pair of free throws, and the Mavericks' lead grew to 75-71. Mitchell tagged on a pair of free throws, and the Mavericks had a 77-71 lead with 36 seconds to play.

After the Coyotes had gained the 71-65 lead, they failed to score for nearly the last five minutes of the game before a jumper by Frie with 24 seconds to play in the game broke the shooting spell. A 3-pointer by the Coyotes' Nicole Jaycox with two seconds to play was the final scoring as the Coyotes fell 81-76.

The Coyotes made just 27 of 72 (.375) field goals. Frie had 23 points for the Coyotes while Gese had 16 points and seven assists. Orsack had 14 points and Nelson added 13 points.

The Mavericks hit 28 of 56 field goals, including 13 of 29 (.448) 3-point field goals. Nebraska-Omaha also made all 12 of their free throws. Sutherland scored 21 points, along with four rebounds and four assists. She hit five of 13 3-point field goals. Mitchell, who hit five of 10 3-point field goals, also had 21 points while dealing out 10 assists. Hammes had 16 points and 11 rebounds while Peterson had 10 points. Nebraska-Omaha won the rebound battle 41-36.

During the game, Gese moved into fourth place on the all-time assist list at USD. With seven assists, Gese now has 377 in her career.

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