Article by Chris Harris, Devils Lake Journal Sports, February 7th, 2019
This time, the fourth quarter rally wasn't enough.
Lake Region State College, led by Stephanie Miller's 23 points, wasn't able to break through in the 81-66 MonDak women's basketball loss to unbeaten Miles Community College Wednesday night from the Sports Center. And despite the outcome, head coach Danny Mertens was pleased.
"They did a really good job tonight," Mertens said. The Royals lost to the Pioneers by 34 points in their previous meeting on Jan. 17. "I don't think today is the day you want to beat them anyway. Did we show tonight that we can play with them? Yeah."
The Pioneers (24-0, 9-0 MonDak) used their pressure defense to force 22 Royals first half turnovers. And despite that, Lake Region (16-9, 4-4) trailed by only four at halftime.
"I broke down a lot of tape on them and I can't figure out their method to their press. They come from everywhere and it's hard to simulate," said Mertens.
The Royals trailed by two, 50-48, after a Miller 3-pointer with 2:49 left in the third quarter but the Pioneers went on an 8-0 run and led by eight heading into the final period after Dani Schwanke connected on a 3 at the horn. The Royals would get within seven, 69-62, with six minutes remaining but a Dakota Dosch 3 put Miles Community College up 10.
The Royals only got to within seven after that.
"We learned a lot from the last time we played them. I was pretty much happy," Mertens said.
Miller was 7-for-11 from the floor, 4-for-4 from the charity stripe and had nine rebounds. Jordyn Worley and Schwanke each finished with 13 points for the Royals who has dropped four of their last six games.
Patrcycja Jaworska scored 19 points and had five assists for the Pioneers.
The Royals led early in the contest, taking over the lead at 4-3 after a Miller 3. The advantage increased to six before Miles Community College scrapped its way back to take a one point lead with 40.5 seconds left in the first quarter.