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The Lakeland College women's basketball team increased their Northern Athletics Conference record to 11-6 with a 50-34 win over Rockford College on Sunday, Feb. 11, in Lakeland's Moose and Dona Woltzen Gymnasium.
Although both squads produced shaky shooting from the field in the first half, with the Muskies (14-9) shooting 27 percent and the Regents (8-15, 6-11 NAC) only hitting 25 percent for a 24-13 halftime result, the home squad proved themselves a second half team once again and shot 43 percent from the floor while holding Rockford to 31 percent for the game.
"Our defense definitely helped us out today," said head coach April Arvan. "Our coaching staff did a good job of putting a game plan together and our players did a pretty good job of executing it defensively and taking care of the basketball."
Lakeland never trailed the entire game and found ways to fend of a few second half offensive runs by the Regents. At the 11:59 mark Rockford cut the Muskies' lead to 10, but the home squad answered with two consecutive scores with a lay-up by freshman forward Emily Agner and a field goal by senior forward Danielle Duranceau, pushing the score to 38-24. The Muskies would cap off the game with a 7-2 scoring run to put the game out of the Regent's reach.
Duranceau led the offensive drive for Lakeland with a game-high 19 points off the bench, nailing four of her seven attempts from 3-point range and also grabbing seven rebounds. Sophomore guard Kasey Gussert continued her success from behind the arc from yesterday's game at Alverno, tallying 11 points with three 3-pointers and also dishing out four assists.
Despite foul trouble, senior forward Jenna Boehm led the squad on the boards with nine and added four points and two steals in 11 minutes, while Agner was a perfect four for four from the free-throw line and added two more field goals to finish with eight points off the bench.
"Danielle coming off the bench and knocking down shots and grabbing rebounds was huge," Arvan said. "Boehm didn't have the scoring opportunities that she typically does because she got in foul trouble, but I thought she played a very steady game regardless. She was very good on the boards in her limited minutes. Kasey has added a scoring punch for us too."
Lakeland will look for its third consecutive NAC win on Wednesday, Feb. 14, with a road game at Wisconsin Lutheran that could aid the Muskies in securing a spot in the upcoming conference tournament.
"Everything is in our hands," Arvan said. "We just have to take care of business and do the very best job we can to be successful in the next couple of games."
Game time is set for 7 p.m. in Milwaukee, Wis.