Women’s basketball wins GLIAC title

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After emerging victorious, 77-70, against Wayne State on Thursday, Feb. 23, the SVSU women’s basketball team clinched sole possession of the GLIAC North Division title.

The win brought the final overall record for the Lady Cardinals to 21-6 with a 17-4 GLIAC Conference record. The 17 GLIAC wins tied the school record, which the team set last season.

After the game, head coach Jamie Pewinski praised the team for clinching the GLIAC North title and winning the season finale.

“I’m really proud of our ability to finish-off a great regular season with the victory tonight,” Pewinski said. “I thought Wayne State played really well, but we were able to make some huge stops down the stretch and pull away with free throws. We are going to enjoy being the outright North Division Champs, as it was a lot of work to get it done.”

Katelyn Carriere reflected on the team’s success of the regular season.

“I think the biggest key to our success this season is the fact that we have bought into the process,” Carriere said. “Our goal is to get better each day and to never be satisfied with what we have earned. We’re always hungry for more, and I think that is why we have been successful.”

There were seven lead changes and 13 ties in Thursday’s contest. The Cardinals were able to pull off the victory with a strong 28-point fourth quarter.

As a unit, the team shot 41.8 percent from the field and held Wayne State to 39.7 percent. The Warriors bench was able to outscore the Cardinals bench 36-6.

SVSU went to the free-throw line 35 times and converted 28 of those attempts.

The Lady Cards forced 15 turnovers, which resulted in 17 points off turnovers.

Senior Emily Wendling led the offense with another 20-point outing. The forward scored 25 points on nine-for-24 shooting, 10 of which came in the concluding quarter. She added 11 rebounds, giving her eight double-doubles on the season. She also went 7-7 from the charity stripe.

“I think the biggest key to success this season has been our ability to play well together,” Wendling said. “We all work hard and recognize each other’s strengths and play to that. We are excited to have the opportunity to continue playing in the postseason.”

Katelyn Carriere scored 20 points for her seventh 20-point game of the season. The senior guard from Ontario went 4-6 from the field and made 12 of her 15 free-throw attempts, including 9-12 in the fourth quarter. She also added two steals.

Sophomore forward Halee Nieman scored 13 points in her 24 minutes of play. She went 3-5 from the field, including 1-1 from the three-point line. She was also efficient from the free-throw line, making six of her seven attempts. Nieman also grabbed five boards and three steals. Her seven points in the fourth quarter helped secure the victory.

Hannah Settingsgaard was the fourth Cardinal to score in double digits with 10 points. The guard in her sophomore season shot 3-9 and went 2-5 from beyond the arc. She also grabbed four rebounds.

Sophomore Abby Duffy added six points off the bench, making three of her four shot attempts. The forward also grabbed three rebounds.

SVSU will host Northern Michigan in the 2017 GLIAC Tournament Quarterfinals at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the O’Neill Arena.

Carriere added that the team is in win-or-go-home mode and that they have a lot to play for.

“We just have to continue to prepare and put the work in,” she said. “From here on out, it’s win or go home, so we have to take it one game at a time, play every game like it’s our last, and stay focused on the task at hand.”