Cold start dooms Ole women at Concordia
February 8, 2012
MOORHEAD, Minn.- After scoring the first basket of the game, the St. Olaf women's basketball team went scoreless for over nine minutes and could not recover in a 56-47 loss to Concordia on Wednesday night at Memorial Auditorium.
St. Olaf's only lead of the game was 2-0 on Elise Raney's layup in the opening minute of the game. Following the basket, the Oles missed eleven straight field goals, as the Cobbers scored 13 straight points to take a 13-2 lead with 10:31 remaining in the first half.
After the early 11 point deficit, St. Olaf stayed within touch of Concordia. A Rachel Rongstad three-pointer with one second on the shot clock cut the Cobbers lead to 21-19 but a Emily Thesing layup sent the hosts into halftime with a 23-19 lead. After the ice cold start, St. Olaf managed to shoot just 6-26 (23.1%) from the field in the first half.
In the opening minutes of the second half, St. Olaf could not get within four points but hung with Concordia, as the Cobbers could not quite put them away. Leading 36-29 with 10:00 remaining, Concordia went on a 8-1 run to take a 14 point lead, their largest of the game, with 7:12 to play.
Down the stretch, back-to-back jumpers from Elise Raney and Erin Haglund got the Oles within seven at 51-44 with just under two minutes remaining. However, that would be as close as they would get, as Concordia was able to run the clock down thanks to several offensive rebounds in the closing minutes.
On a cold shooting night, St. Olaf was led offensively by Addy Bates, who scored 12 points. The sophomore did all her damage from behind the arc, hitting four of eight threes. Leading scorer Mackenzie Wolter (13.1 ppg) fell a couple points short of her average, scoring 11 on 4-11 shooting. Kirstee Rotty and Raney, the teams second and third leading scorers, combined to shoot just 4-21, scoring just 11 points.
Tricia Sorensen led the Cobbers with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Sorensen made five of 11 shots from the field and all five of her free throws. Erika Jossert was the second Cobber in double figures with 10 points on 4-7 shooting. She also added eight rebounds and three assists.
St. Olaf shot the ball better in the second half but ended at a 30.8% (16-52) clip. Concordia shot slightly better, finishing at 18-52 (34.6%). The Oles struggled mightily from the free throw line, making 10 of 24 attempts (41.7%). The Cobbers made 16 of their 20 free throws. One of the only statistical advantages St. Olaf had was in rebounds. The visitors held a 44-36 advantage, including 16 offensive rebounds. Seven Oles had four or more rebounds.
With the loss, St. Olaf falls to 15-7, 12-7 in MIAC play. Concordia improves to 15-7, 13-6 in the MIAC and passes the Oles for third in the conference playoff race. St. Olaf is a half-game ahead of Saint Mary's who was playing at Gustavus on Wednesday night. The women return to action on Saturday with a trip to St. Joseph to play Saint Ben's at 3 pm.