3rd quarter explosion propels Mustangs over Huskies 81-69

3rd quarter explosion propels Mustangs over Huskies 81-69

Updated: 2 months, 13 days, 15 hours, 27 minutes, 50 seconds ago

MARSHALL — The Southwest Minnesota State Mustangs Women’s basketball team win a tightly contested battle with the Michigan Tech Huskies 81-69 on Thursday evening.

In the opening half, the Mustangs started slow, being down by 10 early in the first quarter 14-4. The Mustangs were missing from the outside and couldn’t capitalize on offensive rebounds on the inside.

The Mustangs made multiple substitutions in the first half keeping the players fresh as they continue to push the pace up and down the court. Mustang guard Bri Stoltzman led her team in points with 10 and had four rebounds. Stoltzman was aggressively driving the ball to the basket at will looking for contact.

The Huskies stayed in the game with some timely three-point shooting and the ability to impose their size against the Mustangs. Isabella Lenz had a game-high 13 points for the Huskies at halftime.

In the 3rd quarter, the Mustangs erupted.

They would come out and score 24 points in the quarter the most of the four players, led by Stoltzman, who amassed career highs in points (21), rebounds (10), and assists (5). The Mustangs took a 12-point lead into the final frame.

However, the Huskies weren’t done.

They would cut the lead to five Midway through the 4th quarter, 66-61. The Mustangs were struggling from the field and only scored three points in the first five minutes of the quarter.

Then Stoltzman would hit a shot and free throws down the stretch would give SMSU victory over Michigan Tech 81-69. There was a brief moment where the game was stopped due to a flagrant foul-2 assessed by Mustangs guard Jenna Birchers. The Mustangs were up by 10 at that point and the game was well in hand.

Hannah Parsley scored 18 points and 10 of her points came in the second half. Parsley had six rebounds as well. Two others would score in double figures for the Mustangs, Sam Wall and Madison Gehloff each had 11 points.

“My teammates were getting me the ball and setting me up good,” Stoltzman said. “What got us going in the third quarter was the crowd. We fed off of that energy they were giving us. I just want to shout out my teammates, they’re amazing people and we brought it tonight in this victory,”

It was the first time in four meetings that the SMSU womens basketball team defeated the Michigan Tech Huskies. It was also the Huskies’ first time playing in Marshall. These two teams haven’t face-off against each other since 2010.

“The No.1 thing about it is we are a team,” Mustangs head coach Tom Webb said. “We are competitive as heck, we want to play together and more importantly play for one another. Our starting five is all averaging 10 points or more a game, which is tough but we also have a bench that can score too. We just have to keep getting better every day. At halftime, we talked about taking some shots and winning the first five minutes of the quarter. We were able to build a lead and held on to it for the rest of the game.”

Webb also stated that Stoltzman is a tough kid, coachable, and just wants to win. He says she doesn’t care about the stats, she just wants to win with her teammates. Webb also says that the message to the team after to is to keep competing, keep getting better, and have fun doing it. He reiterates that it is fun to play the style of basketball he coaches and fun for the fans to watch it. He wants his players to indulge in that and says if they do so, it can be a fun year.

SMSU Mustangs womens basketball team (2-2) will play on Saturday at home against Northern Michigan in the R/A facility.

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