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College Basketball: Tech women fall to Lakers

Michigan Tech senior forward Abbie Botz (12) shoots against Grand Valley State on Saturday, Feb. 22, 2020, in Houghton, Mich. (David Archambeau/Daily Mining Gazette)

HOUGHTON — For one half Saturday afternoon, the Michigan Tech women’s basketball team gave nationally ranked Grand Valley State all it wanted.

But the length and poise of the Lakers (25-2, 17-2 GLIAC) in the second half proved to be too much to overcome in the Huskies’ 70-49 loss.

Tech head coach Sam Hoyt acknowledged that in her postgame comments.

“I was really proud how our team came out and competed in the first half,” Hoyt said. “But they (Lakers) came out to play in the second half and we couldn’t match it.”

Grand Valley’s All-American center Cassidy Boensch proved to be the largest thorn in the paw of the Huskies in the second portion of the GLIAC contest at the Wood Gym.

The 6-foot-4 Boensch tallied 17 of her game-leading 30 points to bust open a 27-27 stalemate at the half.

“She (Boensch) did whatever she wanted,” Hoyt said. “It didn’t matter how well we had her defensed, she just busted through to get off a shot.”

The Huskies (10-16, 8-1) stayed close for awhile and were still in the game at 52-44 early in the final stanza.

But three straight three-point plays by the Lakers early (two by Boensch) pumped the lead up to 63-44 and MTU was done for the day.

On Senior Day at Tech, senior forward Abbie Botz did her best to keep it close with another double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds.

“Abbie Botz played hard, just like she always does,” Hoyt said. “It’s going to be very hard to replace her skills and intensity next season.”

All that remained was for Botz and three fellow seniors to receive a standing ovation from the crowd with 1:34 left to play.

Junior guard Cassidy Trotter backed up Botz with a team-leading 15 points and four assists.

Sara Dax, a promising freshman, contributed seven points and seven rebounds.

Ellie Mackay, the hero in the win over Davenport two nights earlier, was limited to six points on a pair of treys by the Mike Williams-coached downstate team.

Taryn Taugher and Maddie Dailey divided 22 more points for the Lakers.

Tech closes the season at Northen Michigan on Thursday.

The Huskies have earned the No. 8 spot in the upcoming league playoffs, with a trip to Ashland the likely opponent.

GVSU 10 17 25 18 — 70

MTU 17 10 17 5 — 49

GRAND VALLEY (70): Taugher 11, DeBoer 8, Boensch 30, Hedemark 7, Dailey 11, Swing 3. FG: 26-56. FT: 15-21. Rebounds: 34 (Boensch and DeBoer 8. F:11. Fouled out: None. 3-point FG: DeBoer 2, Dailey 1.

MICHIGAN TECH (49): Hobson 2, Botz 14, Trotter 15, Mackay 6, Welsh 2, Dax 7, Barghahn 1, Meister 2. FG: 19-62. FT: 6-7. Rebounds: 43 (Botz 12). F: 21. Fouled out: None. 3-point FG: Botz 2, Mackay 2, Trotter 1.

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