There were two encouraging signs for the Minot State University women's basketball team Thursday at the MSU Dome.
The first: the Beavers appear to be a better-shooting team than last season's squad. The second: star forward Carly Boag may have a new running mate in the frontcourt.
Five different MSU players hit 3-pointers and 6-foot-3 freshman Savana Kingsbury played 25 solid minutes - chipping in 10 points and six rebounds - as the Beavers topped Concordia College 84-71.
Minot State University guard Morgan Klose scores a layup Tuesday during the Beavers’ win over Concordia College at the MSU Dome.
In a span of just more than two minutes in the second half, Kingsbury sunk a pair of free throws, scored on a jump hook over Concordia center Alexandra Lippert and finished through contact on a feed from Boag.
"We got great minutes tonight out of Savana," MSU coach Sheila Green Gerding said. "Geez, she really played well. She crashes the boards hard, and defensively her arms are everywhere. She had that nice back-to-the-basket move where she scored over the 6-4 girl. I'm really proud of her effort."
The Beavers (2-0) displayed a balanced offense by placing five scorers in double figures. Senior guard Sacarra Molina netted a game-high 21 points and knocked down 9-of-9 foul shots. Boag had a double-double less than two minutes into the second half and finished with 18 points and 14 rebounds.
"I just thought we had a lot of different people contribute in a lot of different ways rather than relying on one or two," Green Gerding said. "I thought we shared the basketball well and different people made little runs of their own."
With returning starting forwards Christina Boag and Katie Hardy out this season with injuries, Kingsbury's production was particularly significant for the Beavers. Despite her height, the freshman from Omaha, Neb., prefers to face the basket.
"I like to leave down low to Carly, but obviously I'm (6-3) so I'm gonna have to get better at that game," Kingsbury said. "I'm not as good at the (3-pointer), so I'm gonna have to get better at that, but I work the free-throw line."
The Beavers led just 41-37 with 17 minutes, 51 seconds left in the game, but widened the margin to 17 before a late run by Concordia.
The Cobbers, a Division III team out of Moorhead, Minn., went on a 10-0 run to cut the deficit to seven before Molina iced the game with six straight free throws.
Concordia (1-2) was led by Alley Fisher's 17 points and Erika Jossart's 16. MSU guards Morgan Klose and Alisha "Speedy" Jones chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively.
The Beavers begin their first Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference schedule at the University of Mary on Dec. 1.