Melanie Hageman gets the ball on the block. She scored a team-high 18 points and hauled in nine rebounds.
Thrice As Nice!
Courtesy of GoCobbers.com, Release: February 22
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Gameday Scoring Summary
Gameday Game Recap
MOORHEAD, Minn. -- Concordia found out why the sports sages always say "it's hard to beat a team three times in one season." The Cobbers shot 55.6% in the first half to take a nine-point lead at the break, but Gustavus roared back in the second half to grab a lead midway through the period before Concordia rallied to win 63-55.
The Cobbers outscored Gustavus 21-11 in the final 10 minutes of the game as Concordia used their very familiar theme of closing out a game down the stretch to seize the victory. Concordia has now outscored their in the final 10 minutes of the game in 15 of the 17 games since the turn of the calendar year.
Concordia advances to the MIAC Championship game where they will host Carleton who upset the #1 seed in the tournament St. Ben's 74-73 in overtime. The title game will be on Saturday, Feb. 25 at a time to be determined.
The Cobbers improve their overall record to 20-6 on the season, marking the 18th time in program history that the team has won at least 20 games in a season.
Gustavus falls for only the second time in the past eight games and ends their season with a 19-7 overall record.
The Cobber frontcourt tandem of Melanie Hageman and Tori Ehlert paced Concordia to the win. Hageman finished with a team-high 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds. She was 9-of-13 from the floor. Ehlert scored 14 points and hauled in 11 rebounds to record her fifth double-double of the season.
Bri Monahan scored her 1,000th career point in the game, finishing with a game-high 22 points on a 10-of-20 shooting night. Monahan entered the game with 987 points and scored her 1,000th point at the 14:58 mark of the second half when she converted on a layup to pull Gustavus to within eight at 48-40. Jess Vadnais was the only other Gustie player to score more than seven points. She had 16 points to go along with seven rebounds and five assists.
Unlike the last time the two teams played where Concordia failed to score in the first 8:30 of the game, the Cobbers gained momentum from the opening tap as they went on a 19-6 run to start the game. During that stretch, Concordia went 8-of-13 from the floor and connected on all three of their attempts from behind the 3-point line.
The teams traded baskets throughout the rest of the opening half. Gustavus never closed within six points and the Cobbers were never to lead by more than nine.
Leading 31-22 at half, Concordia extended the lead to 10 at 38-28 with 15:42 remaining in the game.
Just when it looked like the Cobbers would coast through to the championship game, Gustavus caught a second wind and went on a 16-4 run over the next five minutes to grab their first lead of the game at 44-42 with 10:47 left to play.
The turning point of the game came in the next several possessions as the Gusties were never able to extend their lead despite the Cobbers' sudden cold streak from the floor. Neither team scored in the next 1:32 and then a Hageman layup sparked a 10-0 run that lasted five minutes and erased a two-point deficit to put Concordia in the drivers seat at 52-44 with 5:29 left to play.
Gustavus was able to cut the lead to five points with just over 2:00 to play on a jumper by Vadnais, but Hageman countered with another inside basket and the Gusties were never able to within six the rest of the way.
For the game, Concordia shot 50.0% (24-of-48) from the field, while the Cobber defense limited the Gusties to only 37.7% (20-of-53) from the floor. One of the major factors in the game came from long range where the Cobbers shot 35.7% (5-of-14). Gustavus could only muster a paltry 18.8% (3-of-16) from 3-point range.
Concordia outrebounded Gustavus 32-22. The quick Gustie backcourt forced the Cobbers into 24 turnovers in the game and Gustavus used those miscues to score 22 of their 55 points. The Gusties turned the ball over 20 times but only allowed 15 points off the miscues.
The championship game against Carleton can be seen live on the internet at:
The game can also be heard live via audio stream at: