The Minnesota State women’s basketball got their season started in winning fashion after beating Florida Tech 83-44 in the Montana State Billings Tournament Friday.
The Mavs started the game off with a 12-0 run, and never looked back. After having a 23-17 lead in the second quarter, the Mavs ended the half with another run, and went into halftime up 38-17.
The fourth quarter saw the Mavs have their highest scoring quarter of the game, with 26 points. They shot 73% from the field, and 50% from three-point range. Natalie Bremer led the way in scoring for the Mavs as she had 15 points on 7-11 shooting from the field. She also had two assists, three rebounds and three steals.
“We were very pleased with the team’s energy and in-game adjustments. We were able to switch things up throughout the game and lean on our depth and balanced scoring attack to pull away,” said head coach Emilee Thiesse in a press release posted on the Maverick Athletics website.
The Mavericks went into the season as the team that was picked to finish first in the NSIC Preseason Coaches’ Poll. They made it to the second round of the NCAA Division II Tournament and were eliminated by the University of Minnesota, Duluth. The team was the highest scoring offense in the NSIC last season, and is bringing back 13 players for this season, including all five players in the starting lineup.
The team is welcoming three new faces to the locker room. One of them is freshman Jasmine Barney from North Liberty, Iowa. Barney was a three-year letterwinner at Iowa City Liberty High School. Another one of the new players is freshman Shantell Harden. Harden was a team captain in her senior year at St. Louis Park High School and holds the school’s single-season scoring record.
On the sidelines, Mavs’ head coach Emilee Thiesse begins her 12th season as the leader of MSU’s women’s basketball program. Through 11 seasons, Thiesse has a 196-111 record. She led the Mavs to their second best record in the school’s history last season when they went 26-5.
The Mavs then suffered a 76-71 defeat in their second game of the season to Texas Woman’s University Saturday. The Mavs went into the fourth quarter with a 56-54 lead, but were outscored 22-15 by the Pioneers.
“We’re proud of our team’s fight today. This tournament provides a great opportunity to grow as a team and we are doing that right now. We know we’ve got some areas that need to improve to reach our fullest potential, but the effort and energy continue to remain at the highest level. I love this team and am excited about the direction we’re going,” Thiesse said.
MSU concluded their tournament in Billings, Montana with a 76-65 win against Texas A&M-Kingsville Sunday. The Mavs went into halftime with a 46-32 lead over the Javelinas. Destinee Bursch and Emily Herzberg were the leading scorers for the Mavs at the break, with 13 points each. Bursch finished the game with 21 points on 10-15 shooting.
“We’re excited to be leaving Montana with two great wins. We were able to learn and grow a lot this weekend and are eager to get back to work this week as we prepare for two challenging regional games ahead,” Thiesse said.
The Mavs will be back on the road for the Regional Crossover Challenge and are going to take on Southern Nazarene University Friday.
Header Photo: Minnesota State leads the all-time series against the Bulldogs 35-11-2 in games dating back to 1992-93. The Mavericks have won seven of the previous ten matchups, scoring at least five goals on six occasions. (Courtesy Maverick Athletics)
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