Women’s basketball suffers difficult losses

DaQuan Samuel, Staff Writer

The WSC women’s basketball team’s record fell to 5-3 this weekend after losing to both Minnesota State and Concordia-St. Paul at home.

The women suffered its tenth and eleventh losses at home in the last eight seasons, with an 85-72 loss to Minnesota State and a 86-66 loss to Concordia-St. Paul.

“I try to make sure that the freshmen understand that people don’t like Wayne,” junior Paige Ballinger said. “So when they play us, they bring their ‘A’ game, so it’s just as important to bring our A game even more.”

The Wildcats made just four of 16 shots from the field in the first quarter Friday against Mankato and trailed 13-10 after the first quarter.

WSC took an 18-16 lead on a Maggie Schulte 3-pointer. The lead grew to 24-19 following an Anna Martensen jumper, but the Mavericks surged back to end the half and took a 26-24 lead at halftime.

MSU built an 11-point lead with 5:59 to go in the third quarter. The Wildcats got as close as three at 45-42, but Minnesota State went on a 9-2 run and pushed the lead back to double digits. The Mavericks finished the third quarter with a 59-50 lead, making 12 of 19 shots, including five of six behind the 3-point line.

Minnesota State maintained a double figure lead in the fourth quarter as the Mavericks made 8 of 14 shots to finish with the 85-72 win.

Wayne State made 39 percent of its shots from the field and 35 percent from behind the arc.

Ballinger led WSC in scoring with 15 points, followed by Amanda Brainerd with 10. Haley Moore and Ballinger each had five assists for WSC, while Ballinger had four of Wayne State’s eight blocks.

The Wildcats looked to bounce back on Saturday against the Golden Bears of Concordia-St. Paul, but 18 turnovers led to a 20-point loss for Wayne State.

The first quarter was a back-and forth-battle, featuring three ties and seven lead changes as WSC finished with a 23-22 lead after the first quarter.

The second quarter saw Concordia-St. Paul scoring nine of the first 10 points to take a lead. The Golden Bears built the lead to 41-32 before the Wildcats closed the gap to two on a three-point play from Martensen with 29 seconds left in the half.

Concordia-St. Paul’s Mishayla Jones drained a 3-pointer on the final possession of the half to give the Golden Bears a 44-39 lead.

In the third quarter, WSC got within three on a three-point play from Ballinger with 4:40 left to play in the quarter, but the Golden Bears increased the lead back to 11 and finished the third quarter with a 64-56 lead.

CSP put the game out of reach in the fourth quarter by holding WSC without a basket for six and a half minutes, while the Golden Bears pushed the lead to 78-59 and Concordia recorded the 86-66 win.

Ballinger led the ‘Cats with 18 points, followed by senior forward Martensen with 16. Maggie Schulte and Kacie O’Connor also hit double figures with 12 and 10 points each.

“We’re going into practice everyday knowing we have to get better,” sophomore Andrea Larson said. “We have to be better if we want to be successful in our conference.”

The Wildcats are on the road this weekend as they hope to gain a win in conference when they face the University of Mary on Friday night at 6 p.m. and Minot State, on Saturday at 4 p.m.