Caitlin Robinson finished with 11 points and Nikki Pearson added 10 as the Central Lakes Raiders evened their Southern Division record at 1-1 with a 58-53 victory over Riverland Saturday in Brainerd.
The Raiders made the game closer then it needed to be as they turned the ball over 26 times and shot 19-30 for the free throw line.
“This is about our fourth game where it has been tight at the end, and this is the first game where we won,” said Raiders head coach Dennis Eastman. “It’s good to get over that hump.”
CLC forced 23 turnovers and held the Blue Devils to 2-9 shooting from behind the 3-point line. The Raiders also had a 24-8 advantage in bench scoring.
“We came to play today,” said Eastman. “It was nice to see everyone get an opportunity to get in there and give it everything we had,”
The Raiders held Riverland scoreless for the first four minutes and 20 seconds of the first half. CLC led 13-10 at the 12:11 mark and had the lead up to 22-17 with seven minutes left. The Blue Devils scored the next five points to tie the game at 22-22.
Late in the first half, Riverland converted two Raiders’ turnovers into baskets in the last 20 seconds and took their first lead at 32-30 with five seconds left in the half.
“One thing that we talked about at halftime is that we played 19 minutes 50 seconds,” Eastman said. “They got two turnovers at the end and took the lead. Then in the second half with about a minute left, I told the team that they were playing not to lose right now. It was some thing that they had to work through and I am glad that we made it.”
The Raiders burst out of the halftime break to claim a 39-34 edge and appeared to have the game in hand with five minutes remaining and holding on to a 53-44 lead. However, Riverland cut the lead to 53-51 with 46 seconds left.
Robinson made the first of two free throws and Elizabeth Mattson rebounded the miss and drew another foul. She made one of two free throws and Robinson made two more on the next possession to seal the Raiders victory.
Riverland 32 21 — 53
Central Lakes 30 28 — 58
Skyler Anderson 1, Ashley Lau 11, Cassie Masberg 6, Rebekah Aase 12, Brittany Murphy 2, Sophia Hebrink 4, Robin Arjes 15, Bridget Bergstrom 2. FG 22-54 (41 percent). FT 7-25 (28 percent).
Kara Krotzer 2, Lindsey Roos 4, Lena Montano 4, Betsy Helmeke 9, Caitlin Robinson 11, Nikki Pearson 10, Elizabeth Mattson 7, Jalynn Lamb 4, Hannah Lamberg 7. FG 18-49 (37 percent). FT 19-30 (63 percent). Overall: 7-8. Division 1-1. Next: at Anoka Community College 6 p.m. Wednesday.