Beyond the Box Score: Bench Sparks Phoenix in Quarters
By: Andrew Gavin (@GBGavin)
GREEN BAY, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – When the Horizon League awards came out on Monday, the league champion Green Bay women’s basketball team had just one all-league selection. If Wednesday’s quarterfinal contest of the Horizon League Championship is any indication, the selections, or lack thereof, are more a reflection on Green Bay’s balance and depth than anything else.
In Wednesday’s 72-55 victory over No. 9 Valparaiso, the Phoenix got off to a slow start offensively. After seeing his team start 1-of-7 from the field with four turnovers while falling behind 11-3, head coach Kevin Borseth looked to his bench.
After sophomore reserve Ellen Edison (Maple Grove, Minn.) assisted on a bucket to starter Mehryn Kraker (West Allis, Wis.), the Phoenix bench scored the next 14 points as the hosts took the lead for good.
With freshman Mariah Monke (Fergus Falls, Minn.) scoring eight points on 3-of-3 shooting, the hosts’ bench accounted for 18 points in the first half as the Phoenix turned its seven-point deficit into a 33-26 halftime lead.
Monke and Edison each scored 10 of the 33 bench points during the Phoenix victory which assured the remainder of the Horizon League Championship would be played at the Kress Events Center. Senior Sam Zastrow (Algoma, Wis.) dished out five assists in just 17 minutes as Green Bay’s backup point guard role.
Green Bay will meet fourth-seeded UIC in Friday’s second semifinal at 7:30 p.m. For more on the 2014 Horizon League Women’s Basketball Championship, please visit championship central.
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