1993 NCAA Div. III champions
PELLA—Central College rallied from a six-point first-half deficit for a 51-43 women’s basketball victory against Augustana College (Ill.) Saturday.
The Vikings (3-6) raced to a 12-6 lead five minutes into the first half but the Dutch (6-3) whittled the gap to 24-21 at halftime. Tied 32-32 with 14:59 remaining, a Kalli Richardson (guard, sophomore, Blairsburg, Northeast Hamilton HS) 3-pointer ignited a 7-0 run to give the Dutch a 39-32 advantage.
Augustana came back within three points with 6:27 left, but guard Annie Sarcone (junior, Des Moines, Dowling Catholic HS) nailed a 3-pointer to extend the lead to six. Another 3-pointer from guard Rachel Evans (sophomore, Fort Dodge) with 1:54 remaining put the Dutch over 50 points and secured the win.
“We refused to let them back into the game,” coach Mike Jacobsma said. “We worked to value each possession and take care of the ball.”
Richardson finished with a game-high 16 points and shot 66.6 percent from the floor. She also added a career-best seven assists.
“Kalli’s been a spark for us the entire year,” Jacobsma said.
Evans had nine points and five rebounds while forward Jessy Stika (junior, Cresco, Crestwood HS) had seven points and seven rebounds. Guard Alyssa Schwartz (senior, Titonka, WCLT HS) collected five rebounds.
The Dutch forced 24 Augustana turnovers and held the Vikings to 19 points in the second half. Their 43 points were a season low.
“Holding them to 43 points is a huge defensive statement for our team,” Jacobsma said.
Central won the rebound battle, 34-31, and shot 34.6 percent from the field, including 40 percent from long range.
Jacobsma said the game felt like an Iowa Conference matchup.
“It was physical and rough and both teams were fighting for rebounds and diving on the floor,” he said. “But those are the games that are fun to coach and fun to play. We defended our home court today.”
The victory is Central’s third-consecutive win and fourth inside P.H. Kuyper Gymnasium.
The Dutch take a break for Christmas before meeting the College of St. Scholastica (Minn.) Dec. 28th in a 3 p.m. contest at P.H. Kuyper Gymnasium. The Saints (3-6) hold a 1-0 lead in the all-time series, tripping the Dutch 61-50 in 1999-2000.
A video Webcast and live stats of the game can be accessed through Central’s athletics website at www.central.edu/athletics.