WAUWATOSA, Wi. The Bay College Norse Women's Basketball team (13-6) would see their nine game win streak come to an end on Wednesday, as they would drop a tough game to the Bryant & Stratton Bobcats (12-8) by a final score of 62-56.
The Norse would come out of the gates strong, opening the game with a 10-2 run to take an early lead. Bay College would run into one of their many key scoring droughts after that point as they would score just four points in the remaining eight minutes of the first quarter. That would allow the Bobcats to regain their composer and claim a five point lead after one period of play.
A quick basket made it seem as though the offense was back on track for the Norse, but Bay would go almost five minutes before they would hit another field goal. That would allow Bryant & Stratton to build a ten point lead that they would carry into halftime.
The intermission break would do nothing for either team's offense, as Bay would continue to struggle from the floor, hitting just two of 16 attempts. The Bobcats would also see their attack struggle, as they would convert just three of 18 attempts. Bay would take advantage, and the adjustment made at halftime was to attack the rim. The Norse would step to the free throw line 11 times in the quarter, converting on ten of them. It would pull the road team to within three heading into the final period.
Bay College would continue to fight. After trailing by as many as 14 early in the third, the Norse would get a layup from Taylor Hunter (FR, Gladstone, MI) with six minutes remaining in the game to reclaim the lead for the first time since midway through the first quarter. The lead was short-lived. After the teams traded defensive stops, the Bobcats would get baskets on consecutive possessions. The Norse would respond, but their offense would falter at the worst time. Down 51-50 with just over four minutes to play, the road team would not score for three minutes, allowing Bryant & Stratton to hold an eight point lead with a minute left to play. Though the Norse would keep the pressure on in the waning minutes, the Bobcats would go four of six from the charity stripe to hold on for the six-point victory.
The Norse would force 27 turnovers in the game, while committing just 19. On top of their uncharacteristic shooting night, the Bay squad would find themselves in foul trouble. Bryant & Stratton would go to the line 32 times, converting 23 of those attempts. Despite the aforementioned 11 free throw attempts in the third quarter, the Norse would toe the charity strip just 17 times, making 14.
"We came out on the short end, but our players never gave up," said Head Coach Rob Robinson. "When we were down 14 points early in the third quarter we could have folded, but we fought back and took the lead, and I am proud of this team for that. Time to start another streak."
Jordan Kraemer (SO, Norway, MI) would lead the Norse with 16 points and nine rebounds. Juliann Wickman (FR, Felch, MI) added 11 points and three assists.
Taynique Hawthorne (FR, Milwaukee, WI) ended her night with 16 points, four rebounds, and four steals off the bench for the Bobcats. Brandilyn Robertson (SO, Milwaukee, WI) would add 11 points, nine rebounds, and eight blocks, while Kiyanna Rodgers (FR, Aurora, IL) would contribute 11 points, five rebounds, and four steals.
The Norse won't have to wait long for their chance to start the next win streak Coach Robinson mentioned. They will battle UW-Milwaukee, Waukesha Thursday night. That game will tip at 8:15.