ALLENDALE, Mich. – The Michigan Tech women's basketball team saw the 2019-20 season come to a close Tuesday night, falling at Grand Valley State 65-34 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Quarterfinals. The Lakers jumped out of the gate quickly by outpacing the Huskies 19-5 in the first quarter. Tech settled in a bit more in the second half, but the deficit was too large to overcome.
"I thought our team competed hard tonight despite the score, and I'm proud of that," Michigan Tech Head Coach Sam Hoyt said. "Credit to Grand Valley State for coming out and playing well on their home floor. It is a tough way to go out, but I am grateful for everything we learned throughout this year and specifically for our seniors and their leadership."
Neither team posted points on their first possession of the night, but Grand Valley State (27-2) eventually struck first on a free throw from Victoria Hedemark with 9:10 on the first quarter clock. The Lakers then added field goals from Cassidy Boensch and Maddie Dailey followed by two more successful chances at the charity stripe from Boensch to make it 7-0.
Michigan Tech (11-17) got on the board for the first time when sophomore Ellie Mackay dropped in a mid-range jumper with 6:19 to go in the first. She then tacked on a free throw just over a minute later, bringing the Huskies to within six points at 9-3. With 2:42 to play in the first period, freshman Sara Dax kept the Huskies within single digits at 13-5 on a jumper from 15 feet out. Unfortunately, the Lakers would shutout Tech for the rest of the quarter while producing six more points of their own, resulting in a 19-5 lead through 10 minutes.
Mackay notched the first bucket of the second quarter, but once again Grand Valley State countered with a Boensch layup and Jenn DeBoer triple to extend the advantage to 24-7 at the 7:34 juncture. Senior Abbie Botz advanced to the free throw line and sank both chances on the ensuing possession for Tech, but then eight more consecutive points by the Lakers left the game in a 32-9 state with just over five minutes to play in the half.
Freshman Kylie Mogen collected the final three points of the quarter for the Huskies and Grand Valley State wrapped up the second with nine more, culminating on a Brooke McKinley trey to make it 41-12 heading into the intermission. The Huskies played the Lakers even in the third quarter 11-11 and were edged by just two points in the fourth quarter 13-11. Tech never quit and kept battling until the end.
Junior Cassidy Trotter guided the Huskies with eight points, five rebounds, two assists and five steals followed by senior Michelle LaFave with seven points and four rebounds. Botz chipped in six points and hauled down a team high eight rebounds, Mackay ended the contest with five points, senior Ellie Welsh had three points, Mogen produced three points, and Dax tacked on two points. As a team, the Huskies connected on 13 of 53 shots from the field (24.5%), were 2 of 17 from three-point range (11.8%), and 6 for 8 at the free throw line (75.0%). The defense forced 16 turnovers by the Lakers.
Boensch powered Grand Valley State's attack with 18 points and 10 rebounds followed by Hedemark with 14 points. Dailey rounded out the double-digit scorers with 12 points and DeBoer logged eight points and a team best six assists in Tuesday night's quarterfinal game. The Lakers fired in 23 of 52 shot attempts from the field (44.2%), were 10 for 20 from three-point range (50.0%), and 9 for 10 at the charity stripe (90.0%). The Lakers out-rebounded the Huskies 41-29 and had 26 points in the paint.
The Huskies finished the regular season strong, recording wins in three of their last four games, which included a 51-48 victory at rival Northern Michigan in the season finale. Tech swept the season series from the Wildcats with two wins and now will head into the offseason to prepare for the 2020-21 campaign.