The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

December 18, 2013

College basketball notebook: Coach feeling better about Mavericks' toughness

(Continued)

Junior forward Lucas Brown is doubtful for Saturday’s game because of a thigh injury suffered during the trip to California in early November. Margenthaler said that Brown is considering sitting out the rest of the season and applying for a medical redshirt.

Minnesota State women: The Mavericks (6-3, 3-2) lost both games on the road last week and face Concordia-St. Paul, which will be the fifth opponent this season that is ranked in the top 20 at the time. The Bears are rated No. 20, though Minnesota State won 87-63 at St. Paul three weeks ago.

“Our defense wasn’t very good (last weekend),” coach Emilee Thiesse said. “We had enough points to win both games.”

The Mavericks lost to No. 17 Wayne State 79-64 and No. 10 Augustana 86-82. Against Wayne State, the Mavericks allowed 49.0 percent shooting, were outrebounded by 1 and committed 25 fouls. Augustana shot only 39.3 percent by made 38 of 44 free throws, as the Mavericks were called for 35 fouls. Minnesota State was plus-2 in rebounding but gave up 13 offensive boards.

“Against Wayne, we didn’t have the competitive mentality,” Thiesse said. “Against Augustana, we put them at the line way too much. We want to pride ourselves on defense, but if you don’t play defense, you’re not to go on the road and win, especially at those two places.”

Thiesse said Saturday’s game is important to end the losing streak and take some momentum into the holiday break. It also would give the Mavericks a potentially important tiebreaker in the postseason.

“We want to protect our homecourt,” she said. “If you don’t bounce back and learn from lossess, you’re losing the benefit of that experience.”

Backup center McKenzie Hoelmenn is doubtful Saturday with a knee injury.

Gustavus Adolphus men: The Gusties (7-1, 4-0 in MIAC) are off until Dec. 31 when they host Wisconsin-La Crosse. Gustavus, which has won four straight, leads the MIAC by a half-game over St. Thomas. The Gusties are outrebunding opponents by 7.0 per game.

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