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The Lakeland College women's basketball team fell to 0-2 in Northern Athletics Conference play following a 73-49 loss to Concordia University, Wis., on Saturday, Dec. 1, in Mequon, Wis.
The Muskies (2-3 overall) had a tough day shooting, knocking down only 30 percent of their shots for the game. The Falcons had just the opposite problem, shooting 57 percent from the field in the first half, 80 percent from 3-point range, to take a 33-25 lead at halftime.
Lakeland was able to keep within striking distance for most of the first half, trailing by only two points with 4:14 remaining in the half after a made jumper by sophomore guard KC Blahnik made the score 25-23. However, Concordia steadily built a lead in the second half under the direction of the Falcons' Krista Mayyou, who tallied a game-high 36 points in the contest, to put the game out of reach.
"Playing three games in one week at the beginning of your season is tough, but not by any means an excuse," said Lakeland head coach Teri Johnson, referring to the Muskies' two other tough contests this week with Carroll College and Edgewood College.
"We're trying to work on things as a team. Offensively we struggled a little bit, and defensively we struggled a lot. I give Concordia a lot of credit. They are a good team, and Mayyou shot the lights out. We need to learn to adjust to players with the hot hand."
Senior forward Brenda Paulson led the Muskies with 14 points, and sank all four of her free-throw attempts to help the squad to an 87 percent effort for the game from the charity stripe. Blahnik also contributed with 13 points, while sophomore guard Megan Chart tallied 10 points and a team-high nine rebounds.
Although Lakeland was out-rebounded by the Falcons, 41-32, and shot an unlucky 1-14 from behind the arc, Johnson sees potential in her relatively young team's attitude.
"We didn't give up," Johnson said. "I thought that even though we were down in the second half, we were able to make some defensive adjustments, and a few people provided a spark off the bench."
The Muskies will hunt for their first NAC win on Wednesday, Dec. 5, when they face Milwaukee School of Engineering.
"It will be good for us to have time to prepare before we play MSOE on Wednesday," Johnson said. "We have to work to improve every week, especially since we're playing good teams in our conference so early in the season."
Game time with MSOE is set for 7 p.m. in Milwaukee, Wis.