WSC men get first NSIC win, women fall to 0-3

The Wayne State men won their first Northern Sun Conference game of the year Saturday, while the Wildcat women suffered a rare weekend of back-to-back losses at Rice Auditorium.

In the women’s game, Concordia-St. Paul had a 26-11 advantage in points off of turnovers and hit 61 percent from 3-point range to dominate the Wildcats, 86-66.

After a wild first quarter that saw Wayne State take a 23-22 advantage, the visiting Golden Bears went on a 9-1 run to take the lead for good, building a 32-24 advantage. The Wildcats got within two on a three-point play by Anna Martensen in the final minute of the first half, but a late 3-pointer by Mishayla Jones gave the Golden Bears a 44-39 halftime advantage.

The Wildcats pulled to within three on a Paige Ballinger three-point play midway through the third, but the Golden Bears rebuilt their lead to as many as 11 late in the third quarter and held Wayne State without a basket for more than six minutes in the final period to pull away with the win.

Ballinger led the Wildcats (5-3, 0-3 NSIC) with 18 points while Martensen added 16. Maggie Schulte and Kacie O’Connor added 12 and 10 points, respectively. Martensen and Kyrah Fredenburg each had nine rebounds and Haley Moore had five assists.

In the men’s contest, the Wildcats hit 12 3-pointers and shot 52.5 percent from the floor as they rolled to a 76-48 win over the Golden Bears, improving to 2-6 overall and 1-2 in the NSIC.

Concordia-St. Paul scored the game’s first basket, but Wayne State never trailed after that. They broke a 6-6 tie with a seven-point run and led by as many as 17 before taking a 36-20 lead into the locker room.

Wayne State came out on fire in the second half from outside, hitting 6-of-8 from beyond the arc. Four different Wildcats nailed long-range jumpers to make it a 56-29 game with 14:23 to go and the hosts cruised from there.

Matt Thomas led the Wildcats with 17 points, with Brian Goodwin adding 16 points. Goodwin and Tony Bonner each had five rebounds  and Thomas had four assists.

Both teams are on the road next week, visiting University of Mary on Friday and Minot State on Saturday. Game times for the women are 6 p.m. and 4 p.m., respectively, while the men play at 8 p.m. and 6 p.m.

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