Women’s Hoops Continues to Impress, Defeats Concordia 82-56

Posted on February 8th, 2023 by


SAINT PETER, Minn. – It was a battle of the top two teams in the MIAC in Saint Peter on Wednesday night. In one corner, the heavy-hitting Golden Gusties, coming into the matchup with a 16-2 MIAC record and an 11-game winning streak. In the other corner, the Concordia Cobbers, on a 10-game winning streak of their own, putting them second in the conference with a record of 15-3.

Earlier in the season the Cobbers edged out the Gusties by one point, breaking their undefeated record to start the season.

And the Gusties certainly did not forget, dishing out revenge in the form of a 82-56 victory over the Cobbers.

Grace Benz (Sr., Steele, N.D.) picked up a Kylie Baranick (So., Maple Grove) rebound to get the Gusties on the board first, and those two points were the spark that ignited the Gustie inferno. Baranick came out swinging in the first quarter, netting nine of the Gusties’ opening 13 points. Through the first, the Gusties held the Cobbers to just 10 points while putting up 24 of their own.

The Cobber offense woke up in the second quarter, matching the Gusties’ 13 points with 12, but it wasn’t enough to break down the lead, as the teams headed to the locker room at the half with a 37-22 Gustie advantage. Beyond the hot-shooting offense, the Gustie defense was unflappable through the first half, forcing seven turnovers and holding the Cobbers to shooting just 29.6%.

It was Benz to start the scoring off again in the second quarter, taking a feed from Baranick for the layup to kick things off. Emma Kniefel (Jr., Medford) stole the show in the third quarter, posting eight points and shooting 3-for-3 from the floor. The Gusties finished the third with a pair of defensive plays and a layup from Riley Queensland (Jr., Grand Meadow), building their lead to 64-35 over the Cobbers heading into the final frame.

The Cobbers outscored the Gusties by three in the fourth, 21-18, but it wasn’t nearly enough for a comeback, as the Gusties padded their lead to as many as 32 to wrap up the game.

With eight second half points, Kniefel edged out Baranick for the team lead, finishing with 14 on the game. Both Baranick and Benz totaled 12 points behind Kniefel. Anna Sanders (Sr., Vadnais Heights) dished out a team-high eight assists and four steals, while Benz capped off the night with the team- and game-lead in rebounds with nine.

The Gusties, now 20-2 on the season and 17-2 in conference play, return to action on Saturday, hosting St. Catherine for Senior Day at 3 p.m.


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