Women’s Hoops Clinches Regular Season Title with Win over St. Catherine Posted on February 11th, 2023 by


SAINT PETER, Minn. — The Gusties entered Saturday’s game against St. Catherine needing one win to clinch at least a share of the conference regular season title. The opposing Wildcats, on the other hand, took to the floor at Gus Young Court determined to foil the Gusties’ plans.

St. Catherine held the Gusties to just two points for the opening half of the first quarter, while putting up seven of their own. Emma Kniefel (Jr., Medford), determined to get the Gusties back on track, scored six points to bring them even with the Wildcats at 12-12. The Gusties took a two point lead, but the Wildcats clawed back 14-14 and 16-16 to even the score. Kylie Baranick (So., Maple Grove) put two free throws up before the end of the quarter to give the Gusties an 18-16 lead.

The second quarter saw four more lead changes, as both teams put up 10 points each. Off the bench for the Gusties, Riley Queensland (Jr., Grand Meadow) put up four points, including a 3-pointer to give the Gusties their biggest lead of the game at that point at 26-21. The Wildcats converted on three straight possessions to cut the lead back, as the teams headed to the locker room with a 28-26 Gustie lead at the half.

The halftime break gave the Gusties exactly what they needed to turn the tables on the Wildcats, pulling away from St. Catherine in the third quarter by as many as 13, 56-43. Anna Sanders (Sr., Vadnais Heights) went 2-for-2 from behind the arc for six third quarter points, while Baranick, Rachel Kawiecki (So., Richfield) and Morgan Kelly (So., Saint Peter) all added five to the team total.

Despite 12 points from the Wildcats in the fourth quarter, the Gustie lead held strong, rolling to their 21st victory of the season, effectively clinching at least a share of the conference regular season title. Emma Kniefel led the Gusties with 13 points, while Sanders added 12 and Baranick posted 10. Kawiecki led all players with 10 rebounds, while Baranick and Kniefel shared the team lead in assists at four. Baranick also posted a game-high five steals to round out her performance.

The Gusties, now 18-2 in conference play, will look to clinch the MIAC Regular Season Championship outright on Wednesday, heading to St. Paul to face Hamline.


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