Women's Basketball season ends in overtime of NACC Tournament semifinals

Women's Basketball season ends in overtime of NACC Tournament semifinals

MEQUON, Wis. – Concordia University Wisconsin's offense stalled in overtime and Alverno College came from behind to earn a 74-64 victory during an exciting Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference Tournament quarterfinal matchup on Tuesday.

The R. John Buuck Field House erupted when Madelyn Landgraf drained a 3-pointer with 49 seconds to play in regulation, which gave the second-seeded Falcons a four-point lead. CUW had a chance to seal the game and advance to the NACC Tournament Championship for the second-straight season, but two missed free throws allowed the Inferno to gain momentum.

The third-seeded Inferno made a layup and tied the game with a free throw with 10 seconds to play in the second half. There were nine scoring ties and six lead changes in the back-and-forth contest.

During the extra session, CUW went cold and shot 0-for-9 (including six 3-point misses), which forced them to foul the AC. It didn't turn out well for the boisterous home crowd, as the Inferno sank 8-of-14 free throw attempts to win the instant classic. AC's dymanic group of four seniors controlled the game when they needed it most and scored 64 of the team's 74 points.

Senior Katie Luethe (Oshkosh, Wis.) finished her career with her 15th double-double, 18 points and 12 rebounds. Senior Anna Butler (Kewaskum, Wis.) closed out her impressive four-year run with a career-high 10 assists, to go along with four points, five rebounds and three steals. Senior Camille Parsons (Urbana, Ill.) did not play in the defeat because of a health issue.

Sophomore Madelyn Landgraf (Elkhart Lake, Wis.) ended with 15 points, including three 3-pointers, and two steals. Freshmen Jessica House (Oneida, Wis.) and Tori Riechers (Cedarburg, Wis.) each had eight points. Riechers also had seven rebounds and two assists in 27 minutes off the bench.

Jamie Hoernke led the Inferno charge with 25 points, including 9-of-12 at the free throw line, to go along with seven rebounds and two steals. Devon Gorman scored 23 points on 8-of-9 shooting and stole a game-high six passes. Mollie Mikyska had a double-double, 10 points and 16 rebounds, for the Inferno (19-8).

CUW (22-5) committed 11 turnovers in the opening half and regrouped down the stretch, but shot 7-of-27 (25.9 percent) from downtown and was on the wrong end of the foul count 24-13 (three players fouled out). The Inferno also had a 31-8 difference in free throw attempts.

The first half featured five scoring ties and four lead changes, as neither team held a lead larger than five points. AC took a 33-29 advantage into the locker room after going on a 7-2 scoring run over the last 2:11 of the first period.

The Inferno built an eight-point lead just over four minutes into the second half, but the Falcons responded and slowly chipped away at their deficit until the all-important Landgraf triple.

Head coach Stacey Brunner-Jones guided her team to 22 victories, which is the fourth time in her tenure the Falcons have won 20 or more games.