WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Beavers looking to jumpstart offense

BEMIDJI -- The Bemidji State women's basketball team is looking to pick up the pace this weekend. "Within our offense, there's been a lot of fluid movement where you could make reads," BSU head coach Chelsea DeVille said. "We're just finding that...

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BSU junior Emma Rappe (34) makes a drive with the basketball while playing Mayville State on Nov. 18 at BSU. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)

BEMIDJI -- The Bemidji State women’s basketball team is looking to pick up the pace this weekend.

“Within our offense, there’s been a lot of fluid movement where you could make reads,” BSU head coach Chelsea DeVille said. “We’re just finding that we don’t have enough kids that can make the right reads at the right times, and we’re missing them. Our offense has really been struggling because the idea of it has been great, but the structure hasn’t allowed the right people to make the right plays.

“It’s nothing wrong with what we’re doing. I just think we’re missing the action we wanted to. So we’ve really been focusing on offense this week.”

The Beavers (2-6, 1-3 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) score 57 points per game on average. The mark ranks second-to-last in the NSIC, as does their 34.8 shooting percentage. But back home this weekend, Bemidji State is hopeful to jumpstart the offense.

“Being at home, we have a home-court advantage,” junior forward Emma Rappe said. “It’s a lot easier at home to pick up your energy because you’re here so often. I think, this weekend, that’s really going to be beneficial for us.”


The Beavers will host Minnesota Crookston on Saturday, Dec. 16, looking for a second straight win in the BSU Gymnasium. To get it done, the focus remains on themselves.

“We are tweaking ourselves and cleaning up some things that we’ve been poor at. It has been a nice opportunity to focus on ourselves,” DeVille said. “We’ve really been tough on the kids the last couple days, saying, ‘This is what you’re going to do in our offense, and you’re going to do it well.’”

The Golden Eagles (1-7, 1-3 NSIC) have just one victory on the year, but it came in a 69-65 upset over preseason conference-favorite Minnesota State Moorhead on Friday, Dec. 10, one day before BSU lost 70-47 to the Dragons. But the Beavers still know how they can control their matchup with UMC.

“Energy is our ‘It’ factor,” Rappe said. “When we have energy, our defense just escalates. I think we really play better as a team with a lot of energy because we just feed off each other and it works really well for us.”

Tip off is set for 2 p.m. against Minnesota Crookston, where Bemidji State will look to lock up back-to-back conference home wins for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

“We can be a very aggressive team. We definitely picked up our pace a lot (last weekend). I think we found out that we can run on teams more than we thought we could,” Rappe said. “Moving forward, we just need to keep being aggressive, work the ball and be the fast team we can be.”

Micah Friez is the former sports editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. A native of East Grand Forks, Minn., he worked at the Pioneer from 2015-23 and is a 2018 graduate of Bemidji State University with a degree in Creative and Professional Writing.
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