FREMONT, Neb. – A late defensive stand helped Midland University’s women’s basketball team edged the University of Jamestown on Thursday night, 75-74, in Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) action. With the win, the Warriors improve to 11-5 overall and 8-5 in the GPAC while the Jimmies fall to 9-5 and 6-5.
Midland’s offense was hitting on all cylinders to start the game as they raced out to a 5-0. They would increase their lead to as many as 12 on two separate occasions before ending the quarter with a 24-14 lead.
In the second the Warriors were dealt a few setbacks as a pair of players had to be helped off the court. Kennedy Darner went down with an injury a minute and a half into the quarter and then Peyton Wingert followed her to the training room a minute later. Darner would miss the rest of the game while Wingert was able to come back after a few minutes with the Midland training staff.
Jamestown took advantage of the shorthanded Warriors during that stretch cutting the lead to one at 29-28 and then taking the lead moments later 32-30. They would keep the lead the rest of the quarter and took a 37-34 lead into halftime.
After the break, the two teams traded baskets most of the third quarter. Midland worked their way to a 44-44 tie with 5:37 left in the quarter. Then after a pair of lead changes and two more ties, the last coming at 49-49, the Warriors took control to close out the quarter with a narrow three-point lead, 54-51.
In the fourth quarter, Midland built their lead to nine points with 3:02 to go but Jamestown went on an 8-0 run to pull within one, 71-70 with 1:18 to go.
Jamestown would get a layup with 8.8 on the clock and then a dead-ball foul on the Warriors’ Kraft gave them possession 60 feet away from their hoop. Kraft would redeem herself second later as she blocked the Jimmies’ last shot from behind the arc to seal the 75-74 win.
“I thought we had great energy on both ends of the floor,” said head coach Shawn Gilbert in his postgame comments. “We really got after on the defensive end and set the tone early on. We lost our way a little bit when Kennedy Darner went down and then like a minute later Peyton (Wingert) went down. We got out of sorts and Jamestown took advantage of it.”
Wingert missed just three minutes of action following her injury. She led the team in scoring with 20 points while adding 5 rebounds and a team-high 6 assists. Four others scored in double-digits for Midland with Emma Shepard scoring 12, Haase 11, and Makenna Sullivan and Kathy Gathje each had 10. Gathje led the way on the glass with a team-high 7 rebounds.
Midland (11-5, 8-5 GPAC) will take to the court after just one day of rest when they host Dakota Wesleyan (7-5, 5-5 GPAC) on Saturday. Tip-off between the Warriors and Tigers is set for 2:00 p.m. inside Wikert Event Center in Fremont.