Mike Byker, Sports Information Director
FREMONT, Neb. – The Dordt College women’s basketball team held on to defeat Midland in GPAC play on Saturday afternoon in Fremont, Nebraska. Dordt had to overcome a double-digit second half deficit to win in overtime, 94-93.
Dordt trailed the entire first half, falling behind 9-0 to start the game and 22-14 at the end of the first quarter. Dordt got the lead to four early in the second period with back to back baskets by Erika Feenstra but they got no closer as the lead ballooned to 12 before the hosts settled for a 44-33 halftime lead.
Midland scored the first basket of the second half to gain its largest margin but Dordt responded by getting back to within 53-49 on a Siennah Stamness basket with 4:10 left in the third period. The Defenders took their first lead of the game with 1:20 remaining in the period on a pair of Kenzie Bousema free throws to go up 58-57 but Midland regained the lead to end the quarter, 61-60.
A 9-3 start to the fourth quarter put Dordt up 69-64 but the hosts had an answer and went on a 10-0 run to lead 75-69 with 3:51 left in regulation. A basket by Rachel Evavold followed by a Stamness three-point shot got Dordt to within 75-74. A Midland basket put them ahead by three but Stamness hit the equalizer with 53 seconds remaining. Dordt got a stop on defense and Annie Rhinesmith was fouled with 12 seconds remaining and she made one of two free throws. Midland missed a long shot but a foul was called on the ensuing rebound and putback and Amanda Hansen made one of two to get the game overtime.
A three-point basket by Annie Rhinesmith started the overtime and after an empty possession by Midland Rhinesmith added two free throws. An Erika Feenstra basket extended the difference to 85-78 with 3:37 left in the overtime and Dordt maintained a two point lead with :31 left. Rachel Evavold made two free throws for a four point lead and Midland got it back to one with :17 left in the session. Rhinesmith knocked down two more with :13 left and Midland could muster a two-point shot by Maddie Egr as time expired to made the final, 94-93.
Dordt was 29-63 from the field and 7-19 from the arc while converting 29-40 free throws. Midland was 32-72 from the field and 9-28 from the three-point line while making 20-27 free throws.
Dordt had a 35-31 rebounding advantage and forced 16 turnovers while giving the ball up 14 times.
Dordt’s Rhinesmith had a career high 26 points with six rebounds, nine assists and five steals. She scored 11 of her points in overtime. Erika Feenstra scored 22 points and had seven rebounds.
Rachel Evavold scored 16 with eight rebounds and had three assists and four steals. Siennah Stamness scored 11 and was 3-5 from the three-point line.
Midland’s Maddie Egr and Madison Severson had 16 points each. Amanda Hansen added 12. Lexis Haase, Sam Shepard and Katy Gathje combined for 33 points in a reserve effort and had 12, 11 and 10 points each.
“The girls were disappointed at halftime,” coach Harmsen said. “We didn’t play with a lot of passion. We didn’t play with a lot of urgency. We gave up 44 points in the first half and nothing was rolling our way.
“At halftime the message was you make your own breaks. Sometimes when you buckle down and you play a little bit harder and play for each other and love each other things sometimes just start to fall in line. I was really happy to see that. This was a big win for our team.”
Dordt is off until December 28 and 29 when the Defenders play two games at Northwestern’s Classic in Orange City.