FREMONT, Neb. – Fresh off their No. 25 ranking, Midland University was not able to make a statement with a win over a ranked opponent as No. 12 Hastings College came away with win in Fremont, Nebraska. The Warriors (5-4, 2-3 GPAC) fell to the Broncos (7-3, 32 GPAC) by a final score of 70-65. It’s the second game in a row the Warriors have lost by single digits. Midland and Hastings are two of eight teams ranked in the NAIA Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Poll.
It was a back and forth affair as each team led a various points of the game. The fourth quarter alone saw four lead changes and four ties, as Hastings snuck out a difficult road victory. The game came down to the end, but it wasn’t always as close as the final score suggests.
The first quarter was all about runs as Midland came out of the gates and started the game on a 12-2 run in the first five minutes. But, Hastings responded right back with a 9-0 run to make it 12-11 Midland with two minutes left in the quarter. After a jumper from senior Maddie Egr, Midland led by three after the first quarter.
Hastings used a 6-0 run in the middle of the second quarter to take its first lead of the game in a Kaitlyn Schmit jumper. The Broncos outscored the Warriors 20-13 in the quarter and finished the half on a 15-7 run to take a 31-27 lead into halftime.
The Broncos distanced themselves from the Warriors to start the third quarter, outscoring Midland 11-4 in the first five minutes. But, sparked by a three-pointer from freshman Lexis Haase, the Warriors would go on a 9-0 run to pull the game back to within two points.
Hastings scored the next seven points before a Samm Ashida three-pointer in the final seconds of the third quarter cut the lead back down to six as Midland trailed 49-43 entering the final period.
The Warriors started the fourth quarter on a 6-0 run, tying the game on a pair of free throws from sophomore Makenna Sullivan. After trading baskets again, Egr’s layup put Midland ahead 53-52 for the first time in the second half.
With four minutes to play, MacKenzie Willicott sank two free throws for Hastings to give the Broncos a 62-60 lead. The Broncos then went on a 5-1 run to extend the lead to six with just over 30 seconds to play.
Forced to foul after an Amanda Hansen layup, the Warriors sent Emma Grenfell to the line. Grenfell went 1-2, and Egr scored quickly at the other end for Midland, making it a three-point game.
The Warriors fouled again with 15 seconds left, and Shandra Farmer made both of her attempts, giving Hastings a 70-65 lead. Maddie Meadows’ shot in the final seconds missed as Hastings escaped Wikert Event Center with a win.
The Broncos were led by Farmer, who finished with 17 points, but also got impressive performances from Grenfell and Willicott, who each finished with 16 points and six rebounds.
Egr led the Warriors with 25 points on 11-18 shooting from the field. She was also one of four Warriors to bring down five rebounds. Hansen was the other double-digit scorer, finishing with 14 points, four steals, three rebounds, and two assists.
The Warriors are back in action on Saturday, December 1, for another conference game when they host College of Saint Mary (2-9, 1-4 GPAC). Tipoff from Wikert Event Center is set for 2:00 p.m. in Fremont, Nebraska.