Jan. 4, 2012
Griffons run too much for Bearcats
By David Boyce
ST. JOSEPH – One option for Northwest Missouri State women’s basketball team is to forget what took place Wednesday evening at MWSU Fieldhouse.
There is absolutely no need to dwell on a 65-51 loss to Missouri Western that dropped the Bearcats record to 2-11 overall and 0-6 in the MIAA.
Yes, Northwest let a golden opportunity slip away against a team dressed in gold. Missouri Western was also winless in conference play until Wednesday.
“The bottom line was this team was very poorly prepared to play tonight and that goes to one door step and that’s mine,” Northwest coach Gene Steinmeyer said. “I could sit here and talk about field goal percentages or whatever, but the bottom line is I didn’t get them prepared to play the game.”
The Bearcats must focus on their next game. They return home for the first time in month and take on Truman at 1:30 p.m. Saturday. It will be a tough match-up for Northwest. The Bulldogs are 8-2 and 3-2.
Obviously, Steinmeyer and the players will watch film of Wednesday’s game.
“As much as I would like to forget it, you got to use it as a teaching tool,” Steinmeyer said.
It really didn’t start well for the Bearcats. Despite shooting struggles by both teams in the opening minutes, Missouri Western managed to build a 13-4 lead.
A couple of three-pointers by senior Tara Roach helped Northwest stay close. Her first one made it 13-9 and the next one pulled the Bearcats to within three at 15-12.
Although it was nice that Roach sank a couple of long-range bombs, it was a bad sign for the Bearcats. Northwest needs Roach to do most of her damage inside.
Northwest simply wasn’t getting enough offense from any other source. The Bearcats went into halftime down 34-26. Northwest made only eight field goals and shot 26 percent from the field.
“We had three, three-pointers for the game and all of them were from 4s (forward) or 5s (center),” Steinmeyer said. “Shelly Martin who was one of the best three-point shooters in the nation last year, Ashley Thayer is known for her three-point shooting, Meridee Scott is known for her shooting, Emily Hauder is known for her shooting and Abby Henry has been all-conference two different times, but who made the perimeter shots? A post and a 4 shoots them.
“That’s the bad sign. Where were our guns? Western sags, sags, sags so you have to hit a few perimeter shots.”
Northwest’s lack of offense in the first 10 minutes of the second half doomed any hopes of a comeback.
Western scored the first 11 points at the start of the second half for a 45-26 lead.
Before the Bearcats gained some control, they stared at a 53-29 deficit because of the 19-3 run by Western.
For the game, Northwest shot 24 percent. The Bearcats committed 20 turnovers. Only two players - Roach and freshman Maggie Marnin - scored in double figures.
It was a forgettable game except the last 8 minutes when Northwest outscored Western 17-6.
“We are just looking for anything,” Steinmeyer said. “In yesterday’s practice, I noted that when we had a bigger lineup on the floor, things were flowing a little better. There wasn’t much left to try and that’s what I tried.”
The great thing about college basketball in the first week of January is there are plenty of games left.
“We’ve been doing a ton of breakdown stuff and I think tomorrow we are going to do a lot more full-court stuff,” Steinmeyer said. “In the past we’ve done a lot of full-court stuff. I haven’t done as much this year. Maybe we need to it.”
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