Nov. 6, 2011
The University of Minnesota women's basketball team took care of business Sunday afternoon as it defeated Bemidji State, 92-50, in its second of two exhibition games at Williams Arena.
The Gophers once again had at least five players score in double-digits, led by senior Kiara Buford's 21 points. Freshman Rachel Banham put together a 17-point, six-rebound, four-assist, three-steal performance against the Beavers, while senior Jackie Voigt and junior Leah Cotton added 12 points apiece. Junior Katie Loberg contributed 10 points and a game-high seven rebounds in the winning effort.
All players on the Gophers' active roster saw playing time in the contest, with 11 of 13 players scoring at least two points. Freshman Alex Ionescu had three points and an assist in three minutes of play, and junior Amber Dvorak had four points, four rebounds, a block and an assist in 14 minutes.
Minnesota scored 46 points in each half, but stepped up its defense in the second half and held Bemidji State to only 18 points and 16.0 percent (4-of-25) shooting. For the game, the Gophers shot 41.9 percent (31-of-74) compared to the Beavers' 28.6 percent (14-of-49).
The home team also held a significant advantage in rebounds, grabbing 54 compared to BSU's 29, and steals, taking away 16 compared to three for the visitors.
The Gophers took care of the ball a lot better than they did earlier in the week against St. Cloud State, only turning over the ball eight times in the exhibition contest vs. Bemidji State.
The Beavers took an early 4-0 lead on the Gophers in the first half, but a basket in the paint by Loberg and a long jumper by Buford evened the contest, 4-4. Minnesota took the lead on back-to-back jumpers by Buford and a three-point play by Banham and never looked back, holding its lead for the remainder of the game.
The Gophers led by as many as 15 points in the first half, before going on to win the contest by 42 points.
In their first exhibition game of 2011-12, the Gophers defeated St. Cloud State, 86-51, behind a 14-point performance from Buford.
Minnesota officially opens the season at the WBI Tip Off Nov. 11-12 in Daytona Beach, Fla. During the event, the Gophers will take on Arkansas, Florida State and South Florida.
Season tickets for the 2011-12 women's basketball season are on sale now and may be purchased by calling the Golden Gopher Ticket Office at 612.624.8080 or 1.800.U.GOPHER. For 2011-12 season ticket pricing information, as well as other helpful links, visit the Women's Basketball Tickets site.