St.Peter, Minn. – After a tough loss to Gustavus the day before, Minnesota Morris lost 65-75 to Bethel University Saturday in the final day of the Gustavus Classic.
Bethel started the game with a 6-point lead, but Morris did not let them keep their lead for long. They started a comeback, led by layups from Katie Raths and Elli Stevenson. Abby Van Kempen further closed the gap near the end of the first period with a 3-point shot, leaving Morris only 1-point behind. Bethel scored two more points. A three pointer by Stevenson tied the game for the first time 12-12 with 52 seconds left in the quarter. The first quarter ended 14-14 after both teams made two free throws.
In the beginning of the second quarter, Morris gained their first lead 16-17 on another three pointer from Van Kempen. The game went back and forth with another tie, Bethel in the lead twice, and Morris in the lead twice. With 6:18 left in the second quarter, Stevenson tied the game once again 24-24 with a driving layup. Bethel then began to pull ahead, but Morris fought to keep the game close, trailing by only three points at the end of the first half 40-37.
Throughout the second half, Bethel expanded their lead. In the middle of third quarter, Morris faced their largest deficit of 15 points. After two 3-point shots by Emma Atkinson and VanKempen near the end of the third quarter left Morris trailing by nine. Bethel continued to grow their lead as Morris fought to close the gap. A 2-point jump shot by Becca Holland followed by a free throw from Van Kempen left the Cougars trailing by eight with 3:17 left in the game. The game went back and forth from that point with Bethel ending the game with a ten point lead.
Stevenson was the lead scorer with 25 points, followed by Van Kempen with 13 points to go with her four blocks.
Minnesota Morris (0-3) return home to play Mayville State University Tuesday, Nov. 20 on Jim Gremmels Court. Tipoff is set for 5:30 P.M.