No. 3 Hope blows out Saint Mary's 95-48 in MIAA playoffs
By KATIE McVOY
Assistant Sports Editor
The Saint Mary's basketball team finished off its season with a great effort but disappointing results in a 95-48 loss to Hope College in round one of MIAA tournament play.
"I thought we gave a great effort," said head coach Suzanne Smith. "Things didn't go our way but we went out there and went after it."
Unfortunately, No. 1 ranked Hope (23-2, 15-0 in the MIAA) went after the win as well. With every Flying Dutch woman scoring at least two points, Hope came out victorious.
"They have incredible depth," Smith said. "They just keep bringing people in off the bench. They outlasted us."
Hope head coach Brian Morehouse played all 13 women that sat on the bench during the game, bringing in his team's 19th straight win of the season. The last time Hope lost a game was Dec. 7.
The aggressive Saint Mary's team just couldn't compete with Hope's tough defense. The Flying Dutch kept the Belles from taking many shots, and held the team to 30 percent from the court during the second half.
"I thought we were pretty aggressive. We looked to push the ball to push the basket," Smith said. "That's what we said we wanted to do."
Rebounding caused trouble for the Belles again, as the Flying Dutch grabbed 52 boards to Saint Mary's 34.
"They out-rebounded us pretty bad," Smith said.
In addition to missing rebounds, Saint Mary's sent Hope players to the foul line 39 times during the course of the game, costing the team 34 points. The Belles only tagged on 12 points from foul shots.
Senior Julie Norman led the Belles in scoring during the last game of her college career.
"Julie Norman played a good game for her last game," Smith said.
Norman totaled 13 points and three rebounds. Sophomore Katie Christiansen and junior Kelly Roberts each added eight points and Roberts totaled seven rebounds.
Hope senior Kristen Koenigsknect made school history when her first basket of the game made her one of only six women in Hope history to have scored 1,000 points or more in her career. Koenigsknect's total of six points brought her total number of points to 1,004.
Freshman center Laura Geurink came off of the bench to lead the Flying Dutch both offensively and defensively with 21 points and six rebounds. Amanda Kerkstra added 12 to the effort, and teammate Kim Pett totaled eight points for the game.
Despite the disappointing end to the season, Smith felt that it was a good year for her team.
"I think if you really look at where we came from, although our wins came early, we improved immensely," she said. "We really took some steps forward."
Saint Mary's finished 8-17 overall, a much better record than last year's four-win season.
The Flying Dutch, ranked third in NCAA Div. III women's basketball, will take on Calvin College (12-13) tonight at 7:30.
All Sports Stories for Thursday, February 22, 2001