Bronco Women Push MSU to the Wire
EAST LANSING, Mich. – In a game that came down to the final possession, the Western Michigan women's basketball team fell just short at Michigan State, 65-62, on Sunday afternoon. The game was the eighth game on the road for the Broncos as they fall to 4-5 overall.
"I really believe that we were fearless today and stayed focused and locked in all game," commented WMU head coach Shane Clipfell. "Our girls felt that they could hang with a really good team the entire game and I am really proud of them."
Redshirt senior Marlee Hill scored the game-high 16 points to go along with six rebounds. Redshirt junior Jasmyn Walker tallied her second double digit game of the season with 11 points while grabbing six rebounds and a monstrous block in the third quarter.
As a team, eight of the 10 Broncos who saw the court on the afternoon scored. Junior guard Deja Wimby had another solid overall game with eight points, five rebounds, six assists and game-high four steals. Freshman Jordan Walker added five points, six rebounds and four assists while Meredith Miller, Kamrin Reed and Najee Smith had strong minutes off the bench with a combined 16 points.
Junior forward Breanna Mobley was forced to sit much of the second quarter due to foul trouble as the playmaker was kept to just six points with five rebounds.
With a game that went wire-to-wire the entire 40 minutes both teams started off slow on Sunday as the Broncos and Spartans shot a combined 4-for-18 from the hardwood. The Broncos took a two-point lead after the first quarter, after forcing the Spartans to commit six turnovers while Hill scored six of her points early on.
The Broncos came out firing in the second 10 going 7-of-14, taking a six-point lead, until three Bronco playmakers found themselves in foul trouble. Western Michigan committed six turnovers in the final minutes while MSU responded, taking 9-3 run into the break as the score read 32-32 at the half.
"The last four minutes in the second quarter hurt us and we coughed up the ball too many times," added Clipfell. I thought our bench responded really well and overall I thought our team competed well from top to bottom."
Western Michigan shot 42.9 percent in the first half while forcing the Spartans to shoot just 33 percent from court.
The Broncos trailed by as many as seven in the fourth but WMU was sparked by Jasmyn Walker's old fashion three-point play with 1:23 remaining in the game to pull the Brown & Gold within one. Michigan State responded with a runner down the lane as the stage was set for the Broncos to have the ball, down three, with 22 seconds. WMU would have one good look at tying the game but the Spartans' tough defense was too much for the Broncos.
As a team, WMU shot 39.7 percent while outscoring the Spartans in the paint, 26-20. However, Michigan State's 17 points off 20 Bronco turnovers, 31 bench points, and a 43-35 advantage on the glass gave the Green & White the edge on the day.
The Broncos return to Kalamazoo for a three-game home stand beginning with Detroit on Friday, Dec. 8 at 7 p.m. followed by Kentucky State on Dec. 15 before starting Mid-American Conference action on Dec. 30 against Bowling Green.