Courtesy of Midland Athletics
FREMONT, Neb. – Midland University hosted Mount Marty University on a Thursday night in Fremont. Initially planned for Wednesday, the game was postponed a day due to weather throughout the region. The Warriors gave a valiant effort on their home court but fell short to the Lancers, 63-55. With the results, Midland’s record drops to 3-15 overall and 1-11 in the conference while Mount Marty improves its’ mark to 6-14 and 3-11 in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC).
The Lancers took an early advantage, starting the game on an 11-0 run. Following the cold start, the Warriors began to find their momentum. Their offense heated up with an 8-0 run. A second run with under three minutes to go in the opening period put Midland in front, but a three-pointer by Mount Marty closed the quarter, giving them the 19-17 advantage.
The Lancers opened up the second quarter with another three-pointer to extend their lead. Sam Shepard responded with a three-pointer and a free throw to bring the deficit back to just one. After trading three-pointers, Mount Marty turned up the pressure, holding the Warriors scoreless from the field. They would take a six-point lead heading into halftime, 33-27.
After the intermission, the Lancers went on a 7-0 run, extending their lead to double-digits. Erin Prusa was able to get the Warriors’ momentum back with a jumper, as the team followed with a 7-0 run to pull them back within reach. Attempting to battle back at the end of the third, the Warriors could only put up points from the charity stripe again. Mount Marty held a comfortable nine-point lead, 50-41, heading into the final 10 minutes.
The Warriors continued to battle the Lancers in the fourth quarter. Back-to-back three-pointers from Sam Shepard and Prusa pull them within seven points with 3:33 to go. Another triple from Shepard made it a six-point game, but Midland couldn’t get the defensive stops they needed or convert on the offensive end as Mounty closed out the 63-55 win.
Leading the Warriors in scoring on the night was Prusa with 16 points. She added four rebounds, four assists, three blocks, and a pair of steals to her stat line in 30 minutes of play.
Sam Shepard finished with 13 points while Emma Shepard added 9 off the bench. Sara Shepard was the leading rebounder with seven, which matched her point total.
For the game, the Warriors shot 16-for-50 (32%) from the field, with 19 points from the bench. Mount Marty was 21-for-54 (38.9%) and held a slight edge in rebounding (40-32). The Lancers relied heavily on their five starters, who combined for 55 of their 63 points.
“The little runs at the start or end of the quarter make it so difficult to come back,” stated head coach Shawn Gilbert. “We did a great job battling back and finding some things that work. When it comes down to it, shooting 32% from the field, it is going to be hard to win the battle.”
Midland (3-15, 1-11 GPAC) will travel up to Sioux Center, Iowa for a rematch with Dordt (18-1, 12-1 GPAC) this weekend. They will be looking for a better outcome after falling to the Defenders 84-63 earlier in the season. The conference clash is set to begin at 2:00 pm on Saturday, January 21 inside DeWitt Gymnasium.