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Central Women Off to Best League Start in 16 Years, Men Stumble with N-W-U

Posted: Thursday, December 7th, 2017 at 5:50 am
Author: KNIA/KRLS Sports - Cory Houser

A pair of 20-point efforts and a frenzied attack on the glass sent the Central women’s basketball team over Nebraska Wesleyan on Wednesday night, 86 – 77, in the first game of a doubleheader heard live on KNIAKRLS.com.

The Dutch made six of a school-record-tying 16 triples in the first quarter to jump out to a 23 – 21 lead after ten minutes. After Central relinquished an 11-point third period advantage, they answered back and pulled away with clutch free-throw shooting and more sharp long-distance shots down the stretch.

Emily Dine scored 24 points, Jessica Helton put in 23, and Jackie Kriegel scored 11 to go along with a game-high 16 rebounds. The Dutch also out-grabbed the Prairie Wolves 54 – 41 on the boards. Coach Joe Steinkamp says that there are things to clean up, but his team was able to do enough to stave off Nebraska Wesleyan.

The women improve to 4 – 3 overall and 2 – 1 in the Iowa Conference, their best three-game start to conference play since the 2001-02 season.

The men’s contest was close most of the way, but Nebraska Wesleyan had a stretch of more than ten consecutive possessions with points to defeat the Dutch, 99 – 86.

The Prairie Wolves had just five turnovers for the game, and shot better than 61% from the field in the second half to expand their slim one-point halftime lead to 16 at one point late in the game.

Five players scored in double figures for Central, led by 18 points from Malik Wildermuth, 16 from Jamel McKnight, and another 16 off the bench from Andre Johnson. Central’s men fall to 2 – 5 overall, and 2 – 1 in Iowa Conference play.

Central’s women are back at home Saturday versus Iowa Wesleyan, while the men play a ranked Washington – St. Louis team on the road in two days.