Minnesota Crookston 64, Southwest Minnesota State 53
It normally doesn't bode well when a team turns the ball over 15 times and doesn't hit a single 3-pointer.
But Minnesota Crookston made do, holding Southwest Minnesota State to 34 percent shooting and forcing the Mustangs into nearly twice as many turnovers — 27 — to win 64-53 in a slugfest Friday evening at Lysaker Gymnasium.
The Golden Eagles won their second straight game, improving to 4-15 overall and 3-12 NSIC, while SMSU fell to 10-10 and 6-9.
The Mustangs scored the first 10 points of the game before UMC started chipping away, and the first quarter ended in a 15-15 tie. The Golden Eagles ran off nine straight points early in the second quarter, buoying them to a 35-30 halftime advantage.
Southwest Minnesota State cut the lead to as little as two points on multiple occasions in the second half, but Minnesota Crookston held the Mustangs to eight points in the fourth quarter, putting the game away comfortably.
UMC had dominant post play, as Bren Fox (So., C) led the team with 16 points off the bench and Julia Peplinski (So., F) scored 15 points and came down with 13 rebounds. Mattea Vetsch (Fr., G) added 11 points.
Jenna Borchers scored 12 points for SMSU, and Meleah Reinhart added 10.
The Golden Eagles shot just 23-of-63 overall, and went an entire game without hitting a 3-pointer for the first time since Dec. 7, 2005 — a 65-43 loss to Minnesota Duluth. However, they hit 18 of 22 free throws and outrebounded the Mustangs 39-34.
Sioux Falls 77, Minnesota Crookston 59
On a two-game winning streak, upstart Minnesota Crookston ran into a roadblock on Saturday afternoon, as No. 15/18 Sioux Falls beat the Golden Eagles 77-59 at Lysaker Gymnasium.
The Golden Eagles fell to 4-16 overall (3-13 NSIC) with the loss while the Cougars improved to 20-3 (13-3).
UMC led 18-16 after a back-and-forth first quarter in which it shot 57 percent from the field, but Sioux Falls came alive in the second, hitting 10 of 17 field goals while holding the Golden Eagles to just three of 13. This allowed the Cougars to go into halftime up 40-30.
Minnesota Crookston didn't go away immediately, cutting the lead to four points midway through the third quarter, but Sioux Falls used a 17-5 run between the end of the third and start of the fourth to put the game out of reach.
Mary Burke (R-Fr., F) led the Golden Eagles with 11 points, while Mattea Vetsch and Bren Fox scored nine apiece.
Jessie Geer led the Cougars with 19 points, while NSIC South Division Preseason Player of the Year Kaely Hummel scored 16.
Minnesota Crookston was beset by a second straight game of cold shooting, as it shot just 16.7 percent from behind the arc, though its 22-of-53 performance overall was an improvement from Friday's win. Sioux Falls hit 32 of 72 field goals and 11 of 32 threes, in contrast.
UP NEXT: The Golden Eagles are on the road next weekend. They'll take on Minnesota State-Mankato (11-9, 8-8 NSIC) on Friday, and Concordia-St. Paul (10-12, 7-9) on Saturday.
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