WATERTOWN, WI – Two days after pulling out an overtime win against Moody Bible Institute, the Maranatha Baptist University women’s basketball team followed a similar storyline, minus the overtime, in another nail-biter, this time a 53-48 win over Northland College, from Ashland, WI.
The first half was slow low-scoring, but freshman guard Courtney Dunn (Oshkosh, WI) was key to the team’s 16-10 lead at the six-minute mark in the first period, as the freshman rattled off eight points, one of which came on a nifty steal, followed nicely by a weaving path to the basket for a 14-8 lead that forced a Northland timeout.
Maranatha owned a 20-12 lead that extended to 24-17 at halftime, but in a game reminiscent of Thursday’s hard-fought win, Northland crept their way back after a 15-point deficit, courtesy of a layup by sophomore forward Stacy Reinke (Clintonville, WI).
That lead quickly vanished in the span of a minute and a half with a layup and two three-pointers by guards Alison Blackford (Pulaski, WI) and Theresa Stewart (Effie, MN) which led to a back-and-forth battle over the remaining 13 minutes of the game.
At the 10:24 mark, forward Lily Sandstrom (Brookfield, WI) cut it to one point on another three-pointer, and two possessions later, Northland found themselves in a deadlock with Maranatha, at 35-35.
The Lumberjills from Ashland, eventually took a four-point lead on a pair of free-throws with just under seven minutes remaining, but just when the Crusaders needed it most, senior guard Erin Steuerwald (Whitewater, WI) scored a bucket on a nice pass from Dunn, and senior center Laci Peterson (Chillicothe, IL) tied the game at 42 apiece, on a jump-shot.
No sooner had Dunn given Maranatha a two-point lead, when the Lumberjills nailed yet another long shot from beyond the arc, and a three-point lead, this time with 4:17 remaining.
Maranatha would finally put an end to Northland’s attempt at a comeback, clinging to a 49-47 lead before Peterson and Dunn, with ice in their veins, clinched the game on free-throws.
Dunn was active throughout the game, in multiple categories, finishing with 14 points, seven rebounds, five assists and five steals in 34 minutes of work.
She was followed up by Peterson, who notched 12 points, 11 rebounds and a whopping 12 blocks, her peak of this season.
Senior guard Allison Schulz (Chillicothe, IL) posted 10 points in the win while Steuerwald grabbed seven boards to go with eight points.
Maranatha looks for its third-straight win on Monday, at 7:00 p.m., with a match against Lakeland College.