22nd-ranked Coyote women bow out early

22nd-ranked Coyote women bow out early
The 22nd-ranked South Dakota Women's Basketball Team (22-9) saw its season end in a flurry of three-point baskets by Concordia St. Paul (22-9) in a 82-74 setback in the first round of the NCAA Division II playoffs at the Betty Engelstadt Center in Grand Forks, ND.

The Coyotes, who fell to 3-7 all-time in NCAA Division II playoff games, received a career high 30 points and 10 rebounds from Bridget Yoerger, a sophomore from Hinton, IA. It was Yoeerger's sixth career double double. On this night, it was CSP's hot hand from the perimeter that proved the difference. The Golden Bears hit 14-of-28 from three-point range, including 6-of-11 from reserve Kali Olstad. Point guard Katie LaViolette had 21 points and 17 assists for CSP.

Yoerger hit 11-of-18 field goals, including her only three-point attempt, and also made 7-of-10 free throws. Along with 10 boards, she had two assists, two blocks and three steals. USD also received 14 points and seven rebounds from junior guard Jenna Hoffman of Mitchell, as well as 12 points from junior guard Shannon Daly of Groton.

For the game, USD made 25-of-56 field goals for 44.6 percent, but just 6-of-23 from beyond the three-point arc for 26.1 percent. USD was 18-of-24 from the foul line for 75 percent. Aside from its perimeter game, CSP hit 29-of-61 field goals for 47.5 percent and 10-of-11 shots from the foul stripe. The Golden Bears also won the rebound battle by a 36-34 margin.

"They (CSP) are a very talented team offensively," said South Dakota head women's basketball coach Chad Lavin in a post-game interview with the media. "We got out to a fast start, but then foul trouble caught up with us. When you get down to it, they simply made more shots than we did," said Lavin. "We had our chances, but the difference was a freshman reserve who came in and knocked down shots," he said.

In the first half, USD hit 42.9 percent from the field on 12-of-28 shooting. The Coyotes were able to connect on just 4-of-14 shots from three-point range for 28.6 percent and 8-of-13 from the free throw line for 61.5 percent.

In a tightly contested second half, USD was able to grab a 43-42 lead with 16:58 left in the game. Two foul shots at the 15:13 mark of the half by Hoffman provided USD with a 47-44 advantage. Each time the Coyotes grabbed a lead, CSP seemed to have the answer.

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