WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: Beavers revamp offense for 76-64 win

BEMIDJI -- A 76-64 win was just what the doctor ordered for the Bemidji State women's basketball team. Coming in with a sputtering offense as of late, the Beavers exploded for a season-high 76 points on Saturday, good for a 12-point victory over ...

3882672+CP.121717.S.BP_.BSUWBB WEB Brooklyn Bachmann.jpg
BSU freshman Brooklyn Bachmann (12) scores in the first half against Minnesota Crookston Saturday at BSU. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)

BEMIDJI -- A 76-64 win was just what the doctor ordered for the Bemidji State women’s basketball team.

Coming in with a sputtering offense as of late, the Beavers exploded for a season-high 76 points on Saturday, good for a 12-point victory over Minnesota Crookston behind a full-team effort at the BSU Gymnasium.

“After coming back from that road trip last weekend, we tweaked our offense a lot in practice,” Brooklyn Bachmann said of Bemidji State’s 55- and 47-point performances from a week ago. “We knew that we had to go in and hit shots, play more sharp. We really pulled it out.”

“We restructured our offense so the right kids were getting the right shots at the right time,” head coach Chelsea DeVille added. “We saw some cohesion with our offense. And when the ball goes in, that helps, too.”

The Beavers (3-6, 2-3 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference) fell behind early, but worked back into a tie when Bachmann went behind the back for a fast-break layup and Sydney Zerr spotted up for a corner three. It made for an 18-18 deadlock, which held at 22-22 by quarter’s end.


Early in the second, with the scoreboard showing 27-all, Bemidji State took command through Bachmann. The freshman contributed six points to an 8-0 run, which put the Beavers into a 35-27 advantage as the Golden Eagles (1-8, 1-4 NSIC) missed eight straight shots from the floor.

But UMC answered back for a three-point game at the half -- 37-34 -- and then snuck ahead with the first five points of the third quarter. The Minnesota Crookston advantage held at 42-41 when Micaela Noga splashed a three from the wing, but Bemidji State owned the quarter from there.

Sydney Arrington helped cap a 9-1 run while on the ground, diving for a loose ball and assisting Bachmann for a layup. And although the Golden Eagles eventually broke the spurt, Zerr kept up the dominant stretch by draining another corner three for a 61-48 lead early in the fourth.

“I think the kids did a good job within our motion. (UMC) has to take away something, which means something else is open,” DeVille said. “They shared the ball well. They had the right shots at the right time. It definitely takes the weight off the shoulders of the entire team when we don’t (need) a go-to kid all the time. Everyone can do their job to see some success.”

Although Minnesota Crookston had one last push left in them -- cutting the deficit to 68-63 with a 9-0 run -- the final two minutes belonged to the Beavers. Arrington, Bachmann and Mikayla Larson closed out the night, collectively scoring all eight in a closing 8-1 run that made for a 76-64 final.

“It’s easy to get excited when the ball goes in, and that’s really what it is,” DeVille said. “As silly as it sounds, when you make shots, basketball is fun. Kids saw success. It’s fun to back your teammates up on the bench, on the court, and have a little more fight.”

Backed by 16 points in the first half, Bachmann matched her career high with 22, while Arrington and Zerr racked up 12 apiece. Larson set a new career-best with 11, and Sierra Senske pitched in another 10.

“I know we’re a young team, and everyone keeps using that as an excuse when we lose. But at the same time, teams haven’t really seen us, and they haven’t really seen us play well,” Bachmann said. “After tonight, seeing five people go in double figures, this is a team that is pretty scary. When we’re on, when we’re playing unselfish basketball, we can do something special.”


With the victory, the Beavers earned back-to-back home conference wins for the first time since the 2013-14 season. They’ll return to the BSU Gymnasium at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 30, to host Upper Iowa with hopes of a third straight for the first time since 2007-08.

Bemidji State 76, Minnesota Crookston 64

UMC 22 12 11 19 -- 64

BSU 22 15 17 22 -- 76

Minnesota Crookston (1-8, 1-4 NSIC) -- Odor 16, Michaelis 15, Noga 13, Gruber 8, Guidinger 6, McWilliams 2, Weakley 2, Weber 2, Freund 0. Totals 22-58 16-19 64.

Bemidji State (3-6, 2-3 NSIC) -- Bachmann 22, Arrington 12, S. Zerr 12, Larson 11, Senske 10, Rappe 5, Adamich 2, Appicelli 2, Bray 0, Gartner 0. Totals 26-60 17-19 76.

3882674+CP.121717.S.BP_.BSUWBB WEB Mikayla Larson.jpg
BSU senior Mikayla Larson (24) defends in the first half against Minneosta Crookston on Saturday at BSU. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)

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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