Wed, Dec. 19, 2012 - [Women's Basketball]
Jessica Olson connected on a pair of free throws with 3.1 seconds left in regulation for the Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes, but Hastings' Cami Bruckman banked home a 3-pointer as time expired to send the game into overtime. The Coyotes pulled away with a 15-2 run in the extra session to give Wesleyan a 70-57 win over the Broncos on Tuesday night at Mabee Arena.
It was a peculiar game every way you looked at it. It took Hastings almost five minutes to score its first points of the game as Wesleyan opened up a 15-0 lead to start the contest. It took both teams nearly three minutes to score a point in the second half, and the Coyotes made only 2-of-24 field goals (8.33 percent) in the second 20 minutes.
Wesleyan led 51-46 with 21 seconds left after a pair of free throws by Christian Cassity, when Bruckman would close regulation time with 3 straight 3-pointers, each time chipping away at the Wesleyan lead until the game-tying triple at the buzzer to send the game into overtime.
The Coyotes went nearly 11 minutes between field goal makes in the second half, relying on free throws to score 16 of their 18 second half points as Hastings consistently fouled the Coyotes, sending players to the line for a combined 46 times in the game as Wesleyan made 32 charity shots, flirting with the school record of 39 set back in 2005.
Wesleyan (6-6) scored the first nine points of overtime and led 64-55 with 1:57 to go on a free throw by Alecia Smith before Hastings' Brittney Wong gave the Broncos their only points of the extra session with 1:50 to go. Smith and Kresin each hit a pair of free throws down the stretch to give the Coyotes the 13-point victory margin.
After taking eight days off since an overtime win over Friends on December 10, the Coyotes rocketed out of the gates to a 15-0 advantage with 15:30 to go in a bucket by Kresin. Stephanie Frost scored seven of Wesleyan's first 15 points during the run. Wong's bucket with 15:14 to go was the first points of the night for the Broncos.
The teams traded triples before Hastings got back within nine points with 11:38 to go in the half on a bucket by Wong. Wesleyan quickly responded, regaining a 15-point advantage with 8:33 to go on a bucket by McKenna Britton. Tanasia Uhrig converted a three-point play with 6:49 left in the half, but the Coyotes would push their lead out to a game-high 16 points with 2:10 to go on a pair of free throws by Caley Greving.
Hastings (8-8) used a 7-0 run to end the half to cut Wesleyan's lead to 37-28 at the break.
Wesleyan scored just three points in the first ten minutes of the second half, a field goal by Frost with 17:01 to go and a free throw by Smith with 14:06 to go as Hastings would rally to tie the score at 40-all with 10:10 to go on a Hallie Bauer score. Olson hit a free throw for the Coyotes to hold onto the lead, but Laurel Zwiener gave Hastings its only lead of the game with 8:10 to go at 42-41.
A Frost charity with 7:49 left and a bucket by Olson with 6:14 to go gave the lead back to Coyotes at 44-42. Kresin's free throws with 4:52 to go put the Coyotes ahead by four and Frost's free throw with 34 seconds left put the Coyotes up five, setting up the crazy ending sequence.
Smith had 21 points to lead all scorers in the game and also had a game high eight rebounds in the win. Frost added 15 and Kresin 13 as Wesleyan was 18-of-57 shooting for the game for 31.6 percent. Frost, Kresin and Christian Cassity all had seven rebounds for the Coyotes. Frost's seven rebounds leaves her 29 rebounds away from tying Ascendra Peters' career record of 748 set in 2007.
Bruckman had 19 to lead Hastings, nine of those coming in the final 21 seconds of regulation time, as the Broncos were 21-of-72 from the field for 29.2 percent. Melissa Thompson led Hastings with seven rebounds.
The Coyotes are off for ten days for the Christmas Break before hosting the Kansas Wesleyan Coyote Classic on December 28 and 29. Wesleyan faces Southwestern Christian on December 28 at 6 p.m., and Midland (Neb.) on December 29 at 4 p.m., at Mabee Arena. The Coyotes step back into KCAC play on January 3 at Bethel and on January 5 at Sterling before returning home to face McPherson on January 10.