March 12, 2011
Bearcats head to regional final with 77-61 win
TAHLEQUAH, Okla.-Northwest Missouri State head women's basketball coach Gene Steinmeyer said it best in the post-game press conference. "Sometimes I need to say something to give these girls a little extra motivation," Steinmeyer said. "But tonight, the Tarleton State band took care of that."
Coach Steinmeyer is referring to Northwest's pre-game warm-up before its 77-61 victory over Tarleton on Saturday night in the semifinals of the South Central regional. Members of the band were harassing Kyla Roehrig and other Bearcats during their warm-ups until a school administrator told the members to stop. Well Tarleton State's band and its team found out the hard way that it's not too wise to give Roehrig and the Bearcats any extra motivation.
Roehrig recorded a game-high 26 points, 15 rebounds and four blocks in Northwest's (27-4) semifinal victory over the TexAnns (25-5). The Bearcats held Tarleton to 38 percent from the field, forced 23 turnovers and held the TexAnns to its fourth-lowest scoring output of the season.
With 15:33 to go in the opening half and trailing 12-8, Northwest put together a 14-0 run to take a 22-12 lead and didn't trail again. The Bearcats led by as many as 14 in the half before Tarleton strung together a run to cut the Bearcat lead to 39-32 at the break.
Five points was as close as Tarleton State would get in the second half before Northwest went on a 15-6 run, capped off by a four-point play by Shelly Martin and the Bearcats led 56-44 with 11:05 remaining. The TexAnns didn't get within single digits from there on.
Gabby Curtis scored 22 points, grabbed nine rebounds, had five assists and a season-high five steals in the win. Gentry Dietz had 17 points, seven boards and four blocks, despite picking-up her fourth foul with just under 16 minutes to play. Tara Roach provided the spark for Northwest in Dietz's absence with six rebounds and a career-best four assists.
The Bearcats out-scored Tarleton 22-6 on second-chance points and also hit 11 more free throws while shooting nearly 47 percent from the floor.
Northwest plays the winner of top-seeded Northeastern State and fifth-seeded Central Oklahoma at 7 p.m. on Monday night in the South Central regional championship for the right to go to St. Joseph.
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