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Women's Basketball Moves On To WIAC Semifinals
Posted: Tuesday, February 24, 2009
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. - The 12th-ranked UW-Eau Claire women's basketball team defeated UW-River Falls 62-47 in the first round of the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Tournament tonight in Zorn Arena.
The Blugolds improve to 22-4 while the Falcons completed their season with a record of 14-12. Eau Claire, the third seed in this year's tournament, will now head to Whitewater to face the No. 2 seed UW-Whitewater. Stout also won its home game tonight, defeating UW-La Crosse 80-72, and moves on to face No. 1 seed UW-Stevens Point. Tip-off for the Blugolds' semifinal game Thursday is set for 7 p.m. while Stout will take on Stevens Point at 8 p.m.
In tonight's game against the Falcons, the teams kept it close in the first period. The Blugolds and Falcons exchanged leads four times during the half and Eau Claire could not get up by more than six points the entire half. Eau Claire was only able to shoot 33.3 percent in the first half but took a six-point lead into halftime.
The Blugolds were finally able to get into a rhythm in the second half and were able to increase their lead to 10 in only one minute. However, River Falls hung right with the Blugolds and did not allow them to get up by more than 10 until the final three minutes of the game. With only five minutes to go, River Falls closed the gap to six but the Blugolds poured it on and proceeded to go on a 10-1 run to end the game up by 15.
Neither team shot exceptionally well from the floor tonight, but the Blugolds led going 37.9 percent to the Falcons' 32 percent. Eau Claire was able to drain some key 3-pointers and finished the game 7-for-15 (46.7 percent) while River Falls was only 2-for-18 (11.1 percent). The Falcons outrebounded the Blugolds 42-36 but were plagued by turnovers, committing 22 to Eau Claire's 12. The Blugolds were able to turn River Falls' 22 turnovers into 13 points.
Heather Witt (Sr.-Kendall, Wis./Royall) led the game tonight with 19 points, going 6-for-9 from the floor, including 3-for-5 from beyond the arc, and was 4-for-8 from the line. She also finished with a game-high six assists and now has a total of 89 for the year, which leads the conference. She also tied for a game-high three steals. Heidi Arciszewski (Sr.-Thorp, Wis.) led the team with 10 rebounds and finished with six points and four assists. Katie Weinberg (So.-Dresser, Wis./St. Croix Falls) also had a good night coming of the bench, finishing with 12 points with only 14 minutes of playing time. She helped spark the Blugolds in the second half, hitting four 3-pointers in just over four minutes. Hannah Mesick (So.-Chatfield, Minn.) also added 11 points for the Blugolds and pulled down eight rebounds.
Kelli Hilt led the way for the Falcons with 14 points, while Maranda Dohrn finished with 11 points and a game-high 12 rebounds. Taylor House ended the game with 10 points.
- KM -