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WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: No. 7 Vikings conquer BSU, 87-50

BEMIDJI -- When the Bemidji State women’s basketball team hosted No. 7 Augustana at the BSU Gymnasium on Saturday, it didn’t take long to see AU’s national ranking prove itself on the court.

In command all night, Augie surged to an 87-50 win over the Beavers.

“They were in control the whole game,” Bemidji State head coach Chelsea DeVille said. “They have so many weapons and they’re just so veteran in how they play. They play so composed the entire time. They definitely were in control the entire time.”

The Beavers (4-18, 3-15 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) stuck around early, keeping within a point on each of Sydney Arrington’s inside scores to open the offensive efforts for BSU. But the Vikings (21-1, 17-1 NSIC) scored eight of the next 10 points and worked out to a 20-12 lead by quarter’s end.

And in the second, the difference got out of hand for Bemidji State.

Following a free throw by Gabby DuBois 25 seconds into the frame, Augie rattled off 12 straight points for a 34-13 lead. Half of the run came within five seconds when Lynsey Prosser drained a 3-pointer and Hana Metoxen stole the ensuing inbound pass underneath the hoop, finishing the layup through contact for an old-fashioned three-point play.

“They definitely pressure you to turn you over, and they speed you up,” DeVille said of Bemidji State’s 26 turnovers on the night. “They’re really good at anticipating and jumping passes. But we also had bonehead, soft plays where we just gave the basketball away.”

Erica Gartner and Sydney Zerr brought the game back within 15 when the duo assisted each other on back-to-back threes, but Augustana took a 43-26 advantage into halftime.

The Vikings then opened the third with the first six points of the half, and they continued to add to it from there. Late in the quarter, two free throws and a corner three for Logan O’Farrell brought the difference to 30 at 63-33 off a 9-0 run.

McKayla Scheuer drained back-to-back 3-pointers for Bemidji State early in the fourth -- the second off a no-look drive and kick from Gartner -- but Augustana continued to dictate the game. An ensuing 13-2 run closed the books on BSU and served as a reminder of Augustana’s top-10 status.

With at least an eight-point advantage in each quarter, the Vikings dominated their way to the 87-50 win.

Scheuer and Senske split the Beavers’ team high with seven points apiece. Emma Rappe, Zerr and Arrington each added another six, but DeVille said the absence of an injured Brooklyn Bachmann was felt.

“Earlier in the year, I thought we were quick to take bad shots, just no fear in the shooting. Now, I feel like nobody’s ready to shoot when they catch,” she said. “When you’re struggling so much, it’s hard to just have kids step up. It shows with Brooklyn typically being our leading scorer, guard-wise not being in there.”

Bemidji State will be back at the BSU Gymnasium next weekend for the final homestand of the year, starting with a 6 p.m. matchup with Minnesota State Moorhead on Friday, Feb. 9.

No. 7 Augustana 87, Bemidji State 50

AU 20 23 20 24 -- 87

BSU 12 14 9 15 -- 50

Augustana (21-1, 17-1 NSIC) -- Peterson 14, L. O’Farrell 12, Prosser 10, Rust 9, Mexotxen 8, Mitby 8, Selland 8, Honner 5, Hora 5, P. O’Farrell 5, Van Velduizen 2, Walter 1, Koehn 0, Zilverberg 0. Totals 33-67 12-16 87.

Bemidji State (4-18, 3-15 NSIC) -- Scheuer 7, Senske 7, Arrington 6, Rappe 6, S. Zerr 6, Larson 4, Appicelli 3, DuBois 3, Gartner 3, H. Zerr 3, Adamich 2. Totals 18-45 7-14 50.

Micah Friez

Micah Friez is a sports reporter for the Echo Press in Alexandria. A native of East Grand Forks, Minn., he is a 2018 graduate of Bemidji State University with a degree in Creative and Professional Writing. Follow him on Twitter at @micahfriez for Alexandria area sports updates and jokes he thinks are funny.

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