Minnesota Crookston's rally falls short in 72-64 loss to Bulldogs

Jacob Shames
Crookston Times
Emma Carpenter shoots a layup during the first half of Minnesota Crookston's 72-64 loss to Minnesota Duluth Saturday afternoon.

After Friday night's 67-45 loss to Minnesota Duluth, Minnesota Crookston women's basketball coach Mike Roysland kept on the bright side. He thought that after having gotten a first-hand feel for the sixth-ranked Bulldogs, the Golden Eagles would be much improved in their next game against them.

Roysland's hope came true Saturday. UMC was indeed improved — just not improved enough.

Minnesota Duluth stiff-armed a late Golden Eagle rally to win, 72-64, Saturday afternoon at Lysaker Gymnasium to sweep Minnesota Crookston.

UMD led 21-10 after the first quarter, but the Golden Eagles (3-9, 3-7 NSIC) held the Bulldogs to 25 percent shooting in the second. This allowed them to get within four points at halftime, finishing the half on a Jes Mertens and-1 and a basket by Haylee Wheeler (Fr., F/C).

Minnesota Duluth (7-0, 7-0) responded well, though, taking an 13-point lead midway through in the fourth quarter on a 3-pointer by Maesyn Theisen.

The Golden Eagles weren't fazed — especially Mertens. She scored 11 points in just three minutes, including three 3-pointers, to help Minnesota Crookston get within 61-60 with 3:22 to play.

But the Bulldogs had an answer for everything. Ann Simonet knocked down a 3-pointer to make it 64-60, and Theisen drilled a three to make it 69-64 after a layup by Bren Fox (Jr., C).

Mertens' 21 points were a career-high for the freshman guard, and led all scorers. Fox added 16 points and eight rebounds, and Mary Burke (Rs. So., F) added 11.

Brooke Olson, the defending NSIC Player of the Year, scored 19 for Minnesota Duluth. Sarah Grow added 15 points and nine rebounds.

UP NEXT: UMC is at St. Cloud State (7-3, 4-2) Feb. 12 and Feb. 13 for its final road trip of the season. Last season, the Golden Eagles split the season series with the Huskies, which included a 79-72 win in the final game of the regular season. SCSU went on to win the NSIC Tournament.

BOX SCORE

Minnesota Crookston 10-18-12-24—64

Minnesota Duluth 21-19-11-21—72

MINNESOTA CROOKSTON STATS

  • Points: Jes Mertens 21, Bren Fox 16, Mary Burke 11
  • Rebounds: Bren Fox 8, Haylee Wheeler 5, Jes Mertens 5
  • Assists: Kylie Post 3, Bren Fox 2
  • Steals: Jes Mertens 3, Mary Burke 1
  • Blocks: Emma Carpenter 1, Kylie Post 1
  • Team: 24-61 field goals, 5-19 3-pointers, 11-12 free throws

MINNESOTA DULUTH STATS

  • Points: Brooke Olson 19, Sarah Grow 15, Ann Simonet 11
  • Rebounds: Sarah Grow 9, Brooke Olson 6, Maesyn Theisen 5
  • Assists: Brooke Olson 3, Ella Gilbertson 3, Maesyn Theisen 3
  • Steals: Payton Kahl 2
  • Blocks: Sarah Grow 4, Payton Kahl 2
  • Team: 26-57 field goals, 7-19 3-pointers, 13-17 free throws

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