February 18, 20111st2ndFinal
Southwest Minnesota283765
Bemidji State303868
Stats at a GlanceSMSUBSUWBB
FG Percentage.455 (25-55) .415 (22-53)
3P FG Percentage.417 (10-24) .400 (6-15)
FT Percentage.500 (5-10) .818 (18-22)
Offensive Rebounds912
Defensive Rebounds2125
Total Rebounds3037
Bench Points2428
PointsFink - 16
Hebrink - 19
ReboundsKramer - 9
Hebrink - 7
AssistsPeterson - 4
Hebrink - 4
StealsFink - 3
Thompson - 3
BlocksKramer - 2
Crucial guard play ends 10-game losing streak
Friday, February 18, 2011
Crucial guard play ends 10-game losing streak

BEMIDJI, Minn. - Shannon Thompson (So., G, Rosemount, Minn.) got the ball off a Samantha Baldwin (Jr., G, St. Thomas, N.D.) steal and ran the length of the court where she converted a layup and was fouled. Thompson hit the free throw to put BSU ahead 64-62 with 30 seconds remaining and the Beavers wouldn’t look back as Thompson and freshman Morgan Lee (G, Hayward, Wis.) converted free throws down the stretch to send Bemidji State University to a 68-65 victory over Southwest Minnesota State University. The win ends a 10-game losing streak for the Beavers and improves their record to 6-17 (3-16 NSIC). SMSU falls to 7-17 (6-14 NSIC).

Hebrink ended the game as the leading scorer for the Beavers with 19 points despite fouling out of the game with 1:56 remaining. The 19 points surpassed Hebrink’s previous career high of 18 points against Augustana College on Jan. 8, 2011. Hebrink was seven-of-11 from the floor and four-of-five from three point land as she celebrated her 22nd birthday with a BSU victory.

Thompson stepped up late for the Beavers scoring five of the last nine points after Hebrink fouled out of the game. The Apple Valley High School product ended the game with a season-high 15 points after missing BSU’s last two games due to a concussion suffered against University of Minnesota Duluth on Feb. 5. Thompson was four-of-seven from the floor and paced the Beavers from the charity stripe connecting on six-of-seven. BSU was 18-of-22 from the free throw line on Friday for 81.8 percent showing why they have been ranked in the top 25 nationally in free throw percentage for the entire year.

Colleen McKay (Sr., C, Barnum, Minn.) finished with 12 points and five rebounds in her second-to-last home game at BSU Gymnasium. The Beavers shot 22-of-53 from the field for 41.5 percent. They were six-of-16 from beyond the arc for 40 percent. BSU won the battle on the glass 37-30 after being outrebounded 16-13 in the first half. Hebrink led BSU on the boards with seven. Both teams had 17 turnovers in the game.

SMSU was paced by Tori Fink’s 16 points on five-of-12 shooting. Fink was three-of-six from beyond the arc. Bree Holleman added 14 points including four-of-six from beyond the arc for the Mustangs. Lucia Puchelova was the third Southwest Minnesota State player in double figures with 10 points and six rebounds. The Mustangs shot 25-of-55 from the field for 45.5 percent. They were 10-of-24 from beyond the arc for 41.7 percent and only five-of-10 from the charity stripe for 50 percent.

After being down 30-28 at the break SMSU started the second half on 6-0 run as BSU was zero-for-eight in the first four minutes before McKay hit a jumper to cut SMSU’s 34-30 lead back to 34-32 with 16 minutes remaining. However the Mustangs were able to counter and get the lead out to a game-high eight points at 50-42 with 11:37 left in the second half.

The Beavers then went on a 10-0 run to take the lead back at 52-50 on two Lee free throws with 8:59 remaining. With the score 54-52, the Mustangs used two free throws by Hannah Beeler and a converted jumper by Fink to take the lead back at 56-54 with 7:08 left in the second half. With 5:07 left seniors Hebrink and McKay hooked up with the latter hitting a layup plus one from the charity stripe to give BSU the lead at 57-56.

The Mustangs tied the game at 57-57 when Fink hit one-of-two from the charity stripe with 3:32 left on the clock. Fink gave the Mustangs the lead at 60-57 with 2:41 remaining. The Beavers cut the lead to 60-59 on a Thompson layup with 2:10 left on the clock. Baldwin got a steal on the following inbounds pass but was unable to convert two layups and Hebrink picked up her fifth foul sending Fink to the line with 1:57 left. Fink hit both shots from the charity stripe to put SMSU ahead 62-59. On the opposite end, Baldwin was fouled by Abby Kenealy and hit both of her free throws to make the game 62-61 with 1:56 remaining.

With 36 seconds left Fink missed a layup for the Mustangs. Kenealy grabbed the rebound but Baldwin came up with the steal for BSU and got the ball to Thompson who ran the length of the floor and hit a layup with 30 seconds remaining. She was fouled by Amber Peterson and converted her free throw to put BSU ahead 64-62. On the opposite end, SMSU’s Fink missed a shot from beyond the arc. Thompson got the rebound and was fouled by Fink. Thompson converted both free throw shots to give BSU the lead 66-62 with 21 seconds left. SMSU cut the lead to 66-65 on a Holleman three with 12 seconds left in the game. With 13 seconds remaing the Mustangs sent Lee to the free throw line. The BSU freshman hit both shots from the line to give the Beavers the 68-65 win.

The Beavers went into the half with a 30-28 lead over Southwest Minnesota State led by Hebrink’s 13 points on five-of-six shooting from the field including three made three pointers. The senior guard was celebrating her Hebrink’s hot shooting stroke paced the Beavers to their first halftime lead since being ahead 21-19 over Southwest Minnesota State in Marshall, Minn. on Jan. 22. The Beavers shot 12-of-23 from the field for 52.2 percent. BSU was five-of-nine from beyond the arc for 55.6 percent.

The Mustangs were led by Bree Holleman’s nine points on three converted shots from beyond the arc. Fink added six points and Abens had five points. SMSU shot 11-of-28 from the field for 39.3 percent. The Mustangs were six-of-13 from downtown for 46.2 percent. Southwest Minnesota State outrebounded the Beavers 16-13 in the opening period. SMSU had 11 turnovers to BSU’s 10 in the first half.

Friday’s win marks the first for BSU since upending then-No. 21 Augustana on Jan. 8 in Bemidji. The Beavers improved to 30-36 all-time against the Mustangs. This is the second game this season between BSU and SMSU to be decided in the final seconds. On Jan. 22, Kenealy hit a jumper just within the three point line with 19 seconds remaining to send SMSU to a 57-54 win at the R/A facility in Marshall, Minn.

BSU will look for a second win on the weekend as they host Minnesota State University at 4 p.m. at BSU Gymnasium. The game will mark the final home contest for Hebrink and McKay. McKay, a four-year player for BSU, needs 31 points and 27 rebounds to surpass the 900 point and 500 rebound milestone. Her fellow senior Hebrink, joined BSU two years ago from Riverland Community College after being a NJCAA All-American while playing for her mother Susan Hebrink. Hebrink has started 46 of 50 games in her two years at BSU.