USD women fall to Nebraska-Omaha 74-60

USD women fall to Nebraska-Omaha 74-60
The South Dakota women's basketball team (12-6, 0-3 NCC) dropped a 74-60 North Central Conference decision Jan. 19, to the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks (13-6, 1-3 NCC) at the Lee & Helene Sapp Fieldhouse in Omaha, NE.

After a slow start by both teams, the scoring picked up over the final 15 minutes of the first half, which saw nine lead changes and five ties. The second half UNO developed a double digit lead that USD was only able to cut to single digits on three occasions after the 8:46 mark.

Following a free throw at the 12:00 mark of the first half by senior Brittany Bessert (Fort Collins, CO) that gave USD a 14-10 lead, UNO reeled off a 9-1 run. Toni Kinsey hit a three-pointer at the 9:12 mark that capped the Maverick run.

Junior Vanessa Yanez (Wagner) then hit one of her three three-pointers on the night at 8:47 that cut the UNO lead to one, 19-18. With her third three-pointer, Yanez moved into fifth in career made three-pointers at USD and now has 134 for her career.

USD eventually took the lead, 23-22, at 4:25, when sophomore Ashley Robinette (South Sioux City, NE) hit a jumper off a Meghan Woster (Sioux Falls) assist.

The Mavericks then ended the half on a 10-2 run to take a 32-29 lead when Kinsey hit a three-pointer at the buzzer.

After USD scored the first four points of the second half, UNO answered with a 10-0 run to the 15:51 mark when J.J. Smith sank a pair of free throws to put the Mavericks up by eight, 41-33.

The UNO lead was cut to two, 41-39 at 12:55 on a pair of three-pointers from sophomore Ashley Bjorkman (Vermillion). However, that was as close as the Coyotes would get.

UNO developed a 15-point lead down to the 8:13 mark thanks in part to another Maverick 10-0 run. USD dropped the lead to nine on three occasions, but could not get any closer after the 3:34 mark.

For the game, USD shot from 41.5 percent (22-of-53) the field and 30.4 percent (7-of-23) from three-point range. The Coyotes were 9-of-16 from the free throw line for 56.3 percent.

Yanez and Robinette led USD with 14 points each, while Bessert finished with 12. Junior Erica Schroeder led all players with 11 rebounds.

Nebraska-Omaha, which scored 10 second chance points to none for USD, shot 37.7 percent (23-of-61) from the field and 37.5 percent (6-of-16) from beyond the three-point arc. The Mavericks made 22-of-26 free throws for 84.6 percent.

Kinsey was the leading scorer for UNO with a season-high 21 points. Ashley Freerksen and Lacey Geitzenauer added 15 and 13 points, respectively, while J.J. Smith added 10 points.

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