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Cougars tied for first in UMAC

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UMM Sports Information

The University of Minnesota, Morris womens basketball added two wins over the weekend, putting them tied for first in the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference with St. Scholastica. The lady Cougars battled back and forth for the win over Martin Luther on Friday night, and on Saturday afternoon, the Cougars first half shooting helped sink Bethany Lutheran.

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UM-Morris 79, Martin Luther 62

The Cougars battled through a physical contest with the Martin Luther Knights, winning 79-62 and remaining atop the UMAC. Abby Fragodt had a career high 20 rebounds, the most in school history since 1976. Kendra Wycoff had a team high 21 points offensively.

The game featured 45 fouls and 39 turnovers, but the Cougars shot 45.6 percent from the field and hit 23 free throws to pick up the win. Emily Auch had a double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Cori Becker had a career high 17 points and seven rebounds. Tori Holt added 14 points in 14 minutes off the bench.

Minnesota Morris doubled the Knights output in the paint, outscoring them 40-20. Thanks to 19 offensive rebounds the Cougars were able to hold a 20-8 advantage in second chance points.

The Knights took an early four point lead, but Minnesota Morris overcame them and never let the Knights retake the lead the rest of the game. Morris gained separation in first half going on a 12-0 run and taking a 21-8 lead with 12:33 left in the half. Martin Luther closed to within five, but Morris responded with a 9-1 run, taking a 13 point lead with under five minutes left in the half. The Cougars went into the halftime break with a 42-31 lead.

The Cougars increased their lead to 15 out of the break before the Knights responded. Martin Luther went on an 8-0 run midway through the second half to cut the Cougars lead to eight, but the Cougars responded with an 8-0 run of their own, pushing the lead back up to 16 once again. The Knights never got any closer than nine the rest of the way as the Cougars took the victory 79-62.

UM-Morris 84, Bethany Lutheran 72

The Cougars improved to 6-1 in the UMAC at the halfway point, thanks to an 84-72 win over Bethany Lutheran. Wycoff had a season high 28 points, she was 9-16 from the field and 6-10 from three. Fragodt had 14 rebounds and seven blocks, which was one shy of her school record of eight, set in 2012.

Auch had 17 points, 14 in the second half to go along with eight rebounds. Kayla Kramer added 13 points, one shy of her season high. Minnesota Morris outscored the Vikings 26-16 in the paint in the game.

Bethany Lutheran took the lead early in the first half, jumping out to an eight point lead midway through the half. They maintained a lead until the Cougars went on a 19-4 run to end the half to take a 50-41 lead. In the first half, the Cougars shot 51.6 percent from the field and hit five three pointers, four by Wycoff.

Out of the half, Wycoff hit her fifth three of the game to give the Cougars a 53-41 lead. The lead grew to as much as 18 at the 16:04 mark of the second half. Slowly the Vikings climbed back and cut the lead to six with 7:09 left in the game. Defensively, the Cougars held Bethany to just five points in the final five minutes and pulled away late to pick up the 12 point victory 84-72.

The Cougars are right back on the P.E. Center court on Tuesday, Feb. 4, as they host Crown College.

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