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Cougar women fall to No. 7 Black Hills State

The University of Minnesota, Morris women took a loss to No. 7 ranked Black Hills State University Friday at the P.E. Center in a non-conference basketball game.

The Cougars fell behind early and spent the rest of the match trying to make up the difference.

The Yellow Jackets' full court press stunned the Cougars early and they had trouble getting across half court and into an offensive set. Meanwhile, several turnovers (24 all told in the first half) turned into easy transition points for Black Hills who went up 22-2.

After a timeout, guard Tara Thielke hit two quick three pointers and soon the lead was down to 22-14. Back-to-back baskets from post Kara Norris and a bucket from Diane Blommel made it a 28-22 game. The teams would go into half time at 31-23.

Rebounding kept the game from becoming a 30-point loss. In the first half, UMM pulled down 18 boards to BHSU's nine. They had a 29-20 advantage for the game.

In the second half, the Cougars solved the Black Hills press.

In the paint, Joy Heysse, Steph Roggenbuck, Emily Mehr and Norris scrapped and hustled against taller players to keep the Cougars within striking distance. Nikki Washek and Kelsey Erickson generated offense with defense, combining for five steals.

While the Cougars made several runs, they could draw no closer than 10 points.

Norris posted team highs in points with 11 and rebounds with 8. Roggenbuck added 10 points.

The Cougars slip to 5-3 with the loss. They hit the road for an away game at Southwest Minnesota State in Marshall on Thursday, Dec. 17. After that, they'll have a long holiday break and resume play on Jan. 4 at Valley City State.