The Gustavus women’s basketball team’s 10-game win streak came to a screeching halt with an agonizing 49-46 loss to Concordia in St. Peter on Monday night. The Gusties shooting was as cold as the temperature outside and the Cobbers came up with the big baskets when they needed them as Concordia swept the season series and knocked Gustavus out of first place in the MIAC. Jess Vadnais led Gustavus with 13 and Melanie Hageman led Concordia with 22.
The contest was played at a very high intensity level with aggressive defense and physical play in the paint. The Cobbers got off to a good start and led 6-0 after the first three minutes of play. The Gusties, however, missed seven of their first ten shots and their first three free throws. Concordia took advantage of the Gusties misfortune building a ten-point 21-11 lead with 8:00 minutes left in the half. Gustavus battled back with a 10-0 run to tie the score at 21-21 with 2:16 on the clock. Concordia’s Jessica Heintz hit a three-point basket to give the Cobbers a 24-21 lead and the two teams traded baskets in the final minute giving Concordia a 26-23 lead at the intermission. Gustavus was 9-of-30 from the field (30.0%) and 2-of-7 from the free throw line (28.6%). The Cobbers were 10-of-27 from the field (37.0%) and 4-of-10 from behind the arc (40.0%).
The Gusties shooting woes continued in the second half as they could connect on only 2-of-8 from the field and 1-of-4 from the free throw line in the first six minutes of play. Meanwhile, Melanie Hageman scored the Cobbers first ten points of the half to give Concordia 39-30 lead with 12:20 left in the game. Just as it appeared that Concordia might take control of the contest, the Gusties came charging back scoring seven straight points and cutting the lead to two at 39-37 with 9:10 on the clock. Gustavus stayed within six points over the next five minutes and pulled to within three 47-44 on a three-point basket by Jess Vadnais with 3:36 left in the game.
Concordia pushed the ball up the floor and scored on a layup by Sara Sorbo to make the score 49-44 with 3:12 left to play. The Cobbers would not score the rest of the game going 0-for-5 from the field and 0-for-4 from the free throw line, but Gustavus was not able to take advantage. The Gusties pulled to within three at 46-49 on a layup by Bri Monahan at the 2:34 mark, but Gustavus would miss its final five shots of the game including a three-point attempt by Monahan at the buzzer that bounced off the rim allowing Concordia to escape with the important 49-46 victory.
Gustavus was 15-of-56 from the field (26.8%) and 12-of-21 from the free throw line (57.1%), while Concordia was 18-of-45 from the field (33.3%) and 8-of-17 from the free throw line (47.1%). The Cobbers outrebounded the Gusties 48-40.
Melanie Hageman was the only Concordia player in double figures with 22 points. Gustavus was led by Jess Vadnais with 14 and Bri Monahan with 13.
Gustavus will host St. Thomas on Wednesday night at 7:45, while Concordia will return home to host Bethel.