Women’s basketball suffers first defeat since November

The Minnesota State women’s basketball team went on the road to Aberdeen, South Dakota and took on Northern State University where they suffered a 92-87 defeat Saturday. 

It is the Mavericks’ first loss since Nov. 21, and it brings their 19-game winning streak to an end.

The game was tightly contested throughout. In the first quarter, after Northern State took an early 5-4 lead, a jumper by Destinee Bursch and two free throws made by Grace Mueller gave the Mavs an 8-5 lead. 

With 1:54 left in the quarter, the game was tied up at 17. Northern State’s Brylie Schultz then hit a shot to give the Wolves the lead. Joey Batt got the game tied up again after a reverse layup from a dime by Emily Herzberg. The Wolves proceeded to knock down four free throws, before Batt drained a three-pointer with 19 seconds left to cut the Wolves’ lead to 23-22 at the end of the first quarter. 

After taking the lead early in the second quarter, shots made by Madelyn Bragg and Alayna Benike gave the Wolves a four-point lead. Batt then made a layup with 7:18 left in the quarter and was fouled on the play. She made her free throw to complete the three-point play, and cut the Wolves’ lead back to one.

Northern State would follow up that sequence of play with a 16-4 run led by Decontee Smith. During the run, Smith scored eight points. As a team, they went five for five from the field, and three for three from beyond the arc. Smith’s three-pointer with 3:56 left in the quarter made the score 44-31 in favor of the Wolves. 

The Mavs would cut into that lead before the halftime break. Batt made a three and a layup to cut the lead to eight points. Taylor Theusch then drained a three of her own to cut the lead to five with 1:36 left in the half. Batt made a layup in the waning seconds of the quarter, to make the Mavs’ deficit 46-42 going into halftime. 

In the first half, the Mavs shot 34% from the field, made three of eight three-point attempts and went 15-19 on their free throws. The Wolves shot 46% from the field, and went 11-12 from the free throw line. They also outrebounded the Mavs 27-17, and scored 17 second chance points. 

The Mavs would regain the lead early on in the third quarter thanks to a jumper from Batt. The Wolves quickly took control of the game again by going on an 8-0 in a two and a half-minute span to give them a 56-50 lead. After Batt made two free throws, the Wolves then went on a 7-0 run and extended their lead to 63-52. 

The fourth quarter began with the Wolves up 63-58, but Norther State got their lead up 12 with 7:22 left in the game. The Mavs tried to claw their way back into the game and went on a 8-2 run. Their push was halted after the Wolves responded with an 8-0 run of their own, which gave them a 82-68 lead with two and a half minutes left. 

The Mavs ended the game shooting 36% from the field, 30% from three-point range and went 25-29 from the free throw line. They also got 17 steals and forced the Wolves to commit 24 turnovers. 

Batt got a career-high 33 points in the game. She also had four steals and five rebounds. Natalie Bremer was second on the team in scoring, with 19 points. No other Maverick hit the double-digits in scoring. 

Despite the loss, the team has bigger goals they are chasing and will use this as a learning curve. 

“The mood of the team isn’t too low after losing last night. We know that wasn’t our best performance but we can’t get too low about it. Having a short term memory with these games is very important since we are still chasing so much more in postseason play. We can take this game as a learning lesson and get a chance to improve ourselves from there,” Bremer said. 

The Mavs will be back home to finish off the regular season against the University of Minnesota Crookston Friday and Bemidji State University Saturday. 

Header Photo: The Minnesota State women’s basketball team saw their 19-game winning streak come to an end at the hands of Norhern State University Saturday. (Dylan Long/The Reporter)

Write to Mohamed Warsame at

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