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The women’s basketball team won one and lost one in the Lakeland College Coaches vs. Cancer Tournament over the weekend, but for a team that views every game as a mark on their record, the loss weighs heavily on their minds. The Maroons pulled out a win on Friday with a rally in the second half against Loras. However, they failed to do so again in a close loss to host Lakeland for the tournament championship on Saturday.
“We did not play at all to our potential this past weekend,” said third-year Joann Torres. “It is one of those weekends that won’t be forgotten but will stand as a [learning] point in our season.”
“We had a great game Monday and after that, we became complacent,” explained first-year Corey Mulder, referring to the Maroons’ opening win against North Central.
Friday’s game against Loras was hotly contested with several lead changes throughout the game. The Maroons went on a 14–3 run to build up a lead of 10 points, their largest in the game, before a Loras surge brought the Duhawks within three at the half to 33-30. Loras would burst ahead and hold onto the lead for much of the second half until a flurry of Chicago baskets led a rally to a 74-65 victory. Third-year Bryanne Halfhill led the Maroons with 17 points and nine rebounds while second-year Jenna Lillemoe came off the bench with a phenomenal 15 points on four-of-seven shooting from behind the arch. For the Duhawks, Lindsey LaBadie and Brittany Kent had 18 and 16 points, respectively.
With a 2–0 record going into Saturday’s game, the Maroons were ready for the championship against Lakeland. After Lakeland took an early lead, however, the women found themselves struggling to catch up for the rest of the game. They kept it close against Lakeland throughout the game, pulling within four of the Muskies with 1:12 left in the game but were unable to surmount the deficit. Bryanne Halfhill, who was named to the all-tournament team, led the Maroons with 13 points and Taylor Simpson had a double-double with 10 and 12 points but they were no match for the Lakeland trio Alyssa Schuttenhelm, tournament MVP Mary Dennewitz, and Erin Cepa who tallied 16, 15, and 15 points, respectively.
The Maroons stand 2–1 for the early season, and these weekend games served as a wake-up call for a very talented and athletic team that has not yet played at its best level. “We are only three games into our season so we are not quite at mid-season form yet,” said third-year Morgan Herrick. “However, I have no doubt in my mind we will reach our potential.”
Fourth-year Dana Kaplan said for the team to have success they need “to learn to channel that talent and athleticism together [as a team].” Third-year Meghan Herrick noted one area to improve, stating that the loss “highlighted what we needed to work on in order to succeed this season—specifically defense.” Lillemoe acknowledged that the team must be “ready and willing to put our best efforts to get to where we want to be.”