1993 NCAA Div. III champions
MOUNT VERNON—Guard Laura Porter (senior, Monroe, PCM HS) matched a career high with 29 points and became the 12th player in Central College women’s basketball history to top the 1,000-point mark for her career but it was an otherwise dismal night for the Dutch, who were knocked off at Cornell College 82-80 Wednesday.
Porter hit 9-of-16 shots from the field, grabbed seven rebounds and passed out eight assists. She now has 1,020 career points and is third in career assists with 290. Center Andrea Clark (sophomore, Guthrie Center) had 13 points and forward Haley Brillhart (freshman, Pella) had nine points and six rebounds.
But Central (8-16 overall, 4-11 Iowa Conference) struggled from the start. Cornell (7-17 overall, 2-14 conference) took an early 10-4 lead and was down just 25-24 with 6 minutes left in the first half. Then Central closed the half with a 13-3 flurry to take a 38-27 lead at the break.
Cornell quickly regained its footing, however, opening the second half with a 10-1 run. The Rams regained the lead with 11:15 left and was up by as many as six points in the final minute. Porter hit a 3-point bucket with 3 seconds remaining to pull Central within one, but after a quick foul, Cornell’s Charlotte Milas hit a pair of free throws. Then Porter was fouled before she could launch a desperation 3-point try and after making the first free throw, intentionally missed the second to no avail.
Central shot 38.6 percent from the field and was outrebounded 49-37.
Coach Jerry Nikkel didn’t hide his disappointment with his team’s showing.
“The first 5 minutes of the game were terrible,” he said. “The first 5 minutes of the second half were worse. We had good looks but couldn’t put anything in the basket. Even at that we had chances at the end.
“We just did a poor job, that’s all you can say. We didn’t have that all-out, enthusiastic, 100-percent spirit. We’ve got one more game now to try to get better.”
The Dutch close the season playing host to Wartburg College Saturday in a women’s-men’s doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. Wartburg dropped to 14-10 overall and 9-6 in the league after falling at home to Coe College 60-56 Wednesday. The Knights edged Central 72-71 at Waverly Jan. 7.
Saturday is Alumni Day at P.H. Kuyper Gymnasium, and both Central squads will be honoring their senior players as well. The games will be broadcast on KRLS-FM (92.1), with a video Webcast and live stats available via the Central athletics Web site at www.central.edu/athletics.