1993 NCAA Div. III champions
STORM LAKE — The Central College women’s basketball team closed the deficit to less than five points in the final minute of the game, but couldn’t find the spark to take the lead over Buena Vista University Saturday, as the Dutch fell in an 83-79 defeat.
“During this game, the team showed incredible energy and strength,” said coach Chelsea Petersen. “It was a very even game. What it really came down to was rebounds and shooting percentage. Buena Vista just connected on the field shots more often.”
Central (9-8 overall, 1-5 conference) drained 40 percent of its shots from the field while Buena Vista (7-10 overall, 1-5 conference) hit 50 percent. The Dutch only had 11 turnovers to the Beaver’s 21 turnovers, but Buena Vista outrebounded Central 40-30.
Buena Vista led by four at halftime, and the Dutch came within one point three times in the second half, but they were never able to secure the lead. In the final minute, guard Kenzie Vander Molen (junior, Pella) hit two 3-pointers and a jumper to bring the team within two points with 10 seconds remaining. Buena Vista sank four free throws with less than 10 seconds to claim the victory.
“We did a fantastic job of attacking the basket,” said Petersen. “We didn’t hit as many shots as we needed in the end, but we adjusted well to a good Buena Vista team on the road.”
Four Dutch players hit double digits. Vander Molen dominated the basket with a game-high 24 points. Guard Rachel Evans (junior, Fort Dodge) scored 19 points and pulled six rebounds. Forward Jessy Stika (senior, Cresco, Crestwood HS) and guard Emily Neff (freshman, Cedar Falls) drained 11 points each. Stika also had a team-high seven rebounds. Guard Courtney Kelderman (guard, senior, Pella) contributed nine points.
Central has three days off before facing conference-opponent Coe College (9-8 overall, 4-2 conference) on Wednesday. The game starts at 6 p.m. in the P.H. Kuyper Gymnasium.
“I am very proud of the team,” Petersen said. “We played very well and put forth an incredible effort. We will focus on a few areas during practice on Monday and Tuesday in order to prepare for a solid Coe team."