LINCOLN, Neb. – The 12th-ranked Concordia women’s basketball team defeated Nebraska Wesleyan, 65-51 Wednesday night. The Bulldogs took over in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Prairie Wolves 24-8. Senior Becky Mueller recorded a double-double scoring 11 points and grabbing 11 rebounds.
The Bulldogs improve to 18-6 overall and 11-6 in the GPAC while the Prairie Wolves fall to 4-16 overall and 3-14 in the conference.
Head coach Drew Olson said, “I’m glad we won, obviously, but I was a little disappointed with our effort. I feel like we have to play a lot harder and keep getting better. It came down to us playing really well in one quarter and that was the difference. It shouldn’t come down to that. We need to come with a little bit better focus and intensity and not let it be that kind of game going into the fourth quarter.”
As a team, Concordia shot .338 from the field. Nebraska Wesleyan had a slight advantage in the category, registering a .340 shooting percentage. The Bulldogs out rebounded the Prairie Wolves, 49-34. Concordia also dished out 17 assists and grabbed eight steals.
“Nebraska Wesleyan is way better than they were at the start of the year. They’re doing some nice things defensively, switching from a 1-3-1 to a 2-3 then to some man…With them switching back and forth it got us out of rhythm and we settled a lot for 3-pointers and didn’t get the ball inside as much as we should’ve.”
Mueller’s performance brings her within 18 points of 1,000 career tallies. In addition to the 11 points and 11 rebounds, the senior also dished out two assists and recorded three steals. Also scoring in double digits was Brenleigh Daum with 14. Daum scored 12 of her 14 from 3-point range. Freshman Quinn Wragge tallied 14 points, going 6-10 from the field and also grabbed six rebounds.
The Bulldogs opened the game with a six point lead in the first quarter after 3-pointers from Shelby Quinn and Devin Edwards. Then, thanks to a 6-0 run, the Prairie Wolves took a 12-10 lead. For the majority of the quarter remaining, Wesleyan held the lead. Daum and Aubri Bro didn’t like it and scored seven straight to take a one point lead after the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the leading margin by either team was no more than three until the final minute of play. Jenna Lehmann made a layup to give Concordia a 33-27 lead going into the halftime break. The third period saw a similar scoring pattern with the leads not going above 10.
The Bulldogs exploded in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Prairie Wolves 24-8. Concordia took off after layups from Muller and Wragge and the classic 3-pointer from Daum, all happening over a span just longer than two minutes. The run gave Concordia a 53-47 lead half way through the final period. The Bulldog defense allowed just two more Prairie Wolf layups the rest of the game to seal a 65-51 victory.
“I was pleased with our group that played in the fourth quarter,” Olson said. There’s positives to take away from the game, I just know that we need to keep getting better and play with more focus and intensity as we play tougher teams going forward.”
The No. 12 Concordia women’s basketball team will be back in action tomorrow it takes on Grace University. Tipoff is slated for 6 p.m. inside Walz Arena in Seward.