Carly Boag entered the weekend 60 points shy of breaking the Minot State women's basketball all-time scoring record. She nearly cut that deficit in half on Friday at the MSU Dome.
In the Beavers' 68-67 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference victory over Sioux Falls, Boag poured in 28 points to go with game highs of 18 rebounds and five steals.
"We started putting different players inside against them and we put Carly a little more on the perimeter where she has a little more space to move and get things done," MSU coach Sheila Green Gerding said in a press release. "She could do some other things than just layups around the hoops."
Junior forward Katie Hardy chipped in 20 points on 7-of-14 shooting as the Beavers escaped with a down-to-the-wire win.
Hardy drained two free throws to put MSU ahead by three with 16 seconds to play. USF (12-11 over, 8-11 NSIC) nearly tied the game on a jumper by Alicia Boe as time expired, but a video review confirmed the shot was a 2-pointer, leaving MSU with a one-point margin of victory.
"Katie is always going to make free throws," Green Gerding said. "She is really good at free throws and also the high post shot. She's got ice in her veins and has hit big shots in big spots for us before and she is just a mentally tough kid that isn't afraid of crunch time."
The Beavers (16-7, 12-7), who kept pace with University of Mary for second place in the NSIC North Division, led USF 34-31 at halftime.
USF forward Laura Johnson nearly matched Boag, posting 28 points and 12 rebounds to go with three assists and three blocks. But she missed a crucial free throw with 17 seconds remaining and MSU holding a one-point lead.
The Cougars, who average 26 3-point attempts per game, launched 27, making just nine. Green Gerding said MSU stuck to its scouting report well.
"They clearly got their shots in, but I thought they were contested shots and we made them hard shots," she said. "We stuck to our game plan and our overall defense was pretty solid."
The Beavers host Southwest Minnesota State for their Senior Day at 4 p.m., when it will honor Boag and point guard Alisha "Speedy" Jones.
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