Green Bay's Defense Prevails in 55-33 Win over Missouri
By: Jill Wunrow (@JillWunrow)
CANCUN, Mexico (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - A 20-0 run by Green Bay (3-1) to close the game while holding Missouri (4-1) without a basket since the 11:32 mark, carried the Phoenix to a 55-33 win over the Tigers in its second game of the Cancun Challenge held Friday, Nov. 23 at the Moon Palace in Cancun, Mexico.
"Our players really got after it especially setting the tone in the first half and I think we did a great job and played with a lot of energy," said head coach Kevin Borseth who improves to 2-1 when leading the Phoenix against Missouri.
Senior Jenny Gilbertson (Wabasha, Minn.) sank a career high three three pointers to lead the Phoenix with 11 points while playing a career-high 23 minutes.
"I've been doing really well in my extra shooting workouts so it was a relief tonight to finally see them go in," Gilbertson said. "I was rushing my first couple of shots but once I started to relax they started to go in."
After Missouri scored the first bucket of the game with a three from Lianna Doty at the 18:36 mark, Sarah Eichler (Grafton, Wis.) sparked a 15-3 run for Green Bay with a three from the left wing. Adrian Ritchie (De Pere, Wis.) added a three the following trip down the court as the Phoenix attacked the basket early while holding the Tigers scoreless until its second bucket at 9:02, cutting Green Bay's lead to 15-6.
After a timeout called by Missouri, the Tigers went on an 8-2 run, cutting Green Bay's lead to 17-11 with 4:30 to play. Eichler drained her second three from the left corner to boost the Phoenix lead to nine (20-11) at the final media timeout of the half.
Morgan Eye's second three for Missouri cut Green Bay's lead to four (20-16) with 44 seconds to play in the first half. After a free throw by Megan Lukan (Barrie, Ontario), a last second foul by the Phoenix gave Missouri two free throw attempts with 0.4 seconds on the clock. The Tigers one made free throw left Green Bay with a 21-17 half time lead.
Eichler and Ritchie each had two three pointers to lead the Phoenix with eight points each at the break while Breannah Ranger (Skokie, Ill.) led Green Bay with five rebounds, all on the defensive end of the court. As a team, the Phoenix shot 20 percent from the field, 22 percent from three-point range and 55 percent from the free throw line.
Green Bay's defense forced Missouri 14 turnovers in the first half of play while scoring 11 points off the miscues.
Early in the second half (18:12), Eichler picked up her third foul while Missouri cut Green Bay's lead to 23-21 off a bucket down low from Liz Smith. Green Bay scored the next six points to open up a 29-21 lead while its defense continued to play tough, forcing the Tigers to turn the ball over three times in the opening minutes.
Gilberton's three pointer from the right wing boosted the Phoenix lead to 32-23 at the 15:14 mark. Missouri responded with the next five points before Lydia Bauer (Lake Zurich, Ill.) drained her lone three of the contest to make it a seven-point game (35-28) with 13:54 to play.
Ritchie picked up her fourth foul with 12:19 to play and 40 seconds later Eye's third three of the game, cut the Phoenix lead to 35-33 with 11:32 to play. Green Bay answered with three consecutive three pointers, two from Gilbertson, to boost its lead to 44-33, forcing the Tigers to call timeout with 9:07 to play.
Eye's three with 11:32 remaining was the Tigers final bucket of the game as Green Bay outrebounded Missouri 17-9 down the stretch while Missouri shot 0-for-17 from the field and 0-for-11 from three point range throughout the span.
Eichler added 10 points and a team-high six rebounds for the Phoenix while Bauer chipped in nine points and six boards. Ranger and Stephanie Sension (Hopkins, Minn.) each finished with five rebounds in the Green Bay win.
As a team, the Phoenix finished the game shooting 26 percent from the field, 30 percent from three-point range and 71 percent from the free throw line.
NEXT UP: Green Bay wraps up competition in the Cancun Challenge facing Richmond (3-3) Saturday, Nov. 24 at 2:30 p.m. CT. The game can be heard on radio dial 1400 AM in the Green Bay area. Green Bay returns to the confines of the Kress Events Center Friday, Nov. 30 as it hosts University of Indianapolis at 7 p.m.
Full season ticket and Pick 5 packages are on sale now with the Green Bay Athletics Ticket Office. For more information and to order tickets, please call 920.465.2625 or visit the athletics department offices in the Kress Events Center.
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