1993 NCAA Div. III champions
GALESBURG, ILL. — Central College put the brakes on a high-speed Knox College offense and secured its third women’s basketball road win of the young season, 70-61 Monday night.
Knox (0-3) is employing a new up-tempo attack which calls for a shot within 11 seconds of every offensive possession. But Central held the Prairie Fire to their lowest point total of the season, limiting them to 27.9 percent shooting, including an icy 11.1 percent from 3-point range.
It wasn’t a smooth ride. The Knox full-court press helped force 30 Central turnovers, but first-year coach Mike Jacobsma said the game served as a good lesson for his club.
“I had to challenge them in a time-out,” he said. “But then the seniors stepped up. They understood they need to take care of the ball.”
Jacobsma cited senior wing Kelsey Schuring (Pella) for showing the way. Normally in the starting lineup, Schuring was asked to come off the bench and responded in a big way with 10 points and five rebounds.
“Kelsey is a really steady player,” Jacobsma said. “I told her we need her to bring that steady balance to the floor by coming off the bench. It’s really important for us to have that presence from her and that senior leadership, and she really stepped up.”
Forward Alyssa Schwartz (junior, Titonka, WCLT HS) cracked double figures for the first time this year, scoring 13 points. Forward Sarah Paulson (senior, Ottumwa) pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds and had five assists while forward Nicole Strasko (junior, Roland, Roland-Story HS) had nine rebounds. Forwards AJ Baker (senior, Grinnell) and Hilary Beaird (sophomore, Burlington) each had eight boards.
Central hit 37.3 percent from the floor but was outrebounded 61-53.
The Dutch showed the effects of a nine-day layoff.
“But I told them this is how it’s going to be in the Iowa Conference when you go on the road,” Jacobsma said. “You’re not going to get all the calls, you’re going to be in a tough environment and you may play with a day off or a week off. Either way, you’ve got to bring you’re A game every night.”
The Dutch open conference play Wednesday with a women’s-men’s doubleheader with Buena Vista. The Beavers are 3-3 and scored a pair of double-digit wins over Central last year.
“They’re going to be a tough opponent,” Jacobsma said. “They lost two close games at the Simpson tournament last weekend. It’s going to be a battle.
Video webstreams and live stats for both Wednesday games can be accessed via the Central athletics website at www.central.edu/athletics. A broadcast of the games will also be carried on KRLS-FM (92.1) with Eric Gotschall handling the play-by-play.