1993 NCAA Div. III champions
PELLA — It was not the Iowa Conference debut first-year coach Mike Jacobsma hoped for, as the Central College women’s basketball team forfeited a late first half lead en route to a 69-64 defeat to Buena Vista University Wednesday.
The Dutch played their way to a 25-17 lead at the halfway mark of the opening period. The Beavers responded with a strong rebounding performance and a 13-4 run to close out the period. A 3-point bucket by Buena Vista forward Laura Hilby with 3 seconds remaining gave the Beavers a 30-29 halftime lead.
“The difference in the game was rebounding,” said Jacobsma. “They did enough things right; they didn’t miss baskets and got second-chance opportunities. That’s going to hurt you every time.”
Central drew the game to a 31-31 tie in the opening minute of the second half, but the Beavers (4-3, 1-0 conference) went on a 14-2 burst for a 45-33 lead at the 13:30 mark.
“They did a nice job of mixing it up defensively and we never got in a real rhythm,” said Jacobsma. “They didn’t let us find the open person so we could knock down shots.”
Central (3-2, 0-1 conference) narrowed the margin to five in the closing seconds but the Beavers fended off the attack.
Central shot just 33 percent from the field, while Buena Vista hit 41 percent.
Junior guard Alyssa Swartz (Titonka, WCLT HS) was Central’s leading scorer with 14 points. Senior forward AJ Baker (Grinnell) had 12, including a 3-7 effort from 3-point range.
Buena Vista won the rebounding battle 44-41. Junior forward Nicole Strasko (Rowland, Rowland-Story HS) led the Dutch with 8 boards.
Central travels to Mount Vernon Saturday to take on Cornell College (2-3, 0-1 conference) for a 2 p.m. tipoff. Cornell suffered a 63-60 (OT) loss to league favorite Simpson Wednesday.