Kiara Burlage and Jamie Nielson both scored 21 points and the Lewis-Clark State women’s basketball team beat Frontier Conference foe Montana State-Northern on Saturday at the Activity Center to keep the Warriors within a game of league-leading Montana Western.

L-C won 69-47.

The No. 21 Warriors (17-7, 9-5) led the unranked Lights (15-11, 4-10) by four early in the fourth quarter when Abbie Johnson and Nielson hit perhaps the game’s two biggest shots.

Johnson scored an old-fashioned three-point play before Nielson, on L-C’s next possession, hit a transition 3-pointer to push the Warriors’ lead to 10. That skein effectively shut the door on the Lights.

“Both of those plays were huge,” L-C coach Brian Orr said. “I’m not sure that it didn’t deflate their team a little bit.”

The Lights, who had been on a 9-0 run, had just pulled within 43-39 less than a minute into the fourth.   

MSU-Northern coach Chris Mouat called opponents’ 3-pointers “our Achilles’ heel,” but that wasn’t the only thing that killed the Lights. Warrior cutters scored a slew of uncontested baskets — and no player capitalized on that maneuver more than Nielson.

She provided a theory as to why that play worked so well against the visitors from Havre, Mont.

“I think they were guarding me a little bit tighter and trying to deny,” said Nielson, who had scored 35 points in her most recent outing. “Also, we’re just getting to the point in the season where we’re knowing where each other are at. I just think we’re playing well together and that’s what happens when you play well together.

“You know where each other are going to be and you can hit each other for easy baskets.”

Johnson grabbed 18 rebounds, the 11th-highest total in school history, as L-C rebounded from its second loss in three games.  

MSU-NORTHERN (15-11, 4-10)

Gunter 7-18 0-0 15, Hoyde 4-11 4-4 12, P. Kehr 4-12 2-2 10, Goldhahn 1-10 0-0 3, Lorton 1-8 0-0 3, R. Kehr 2-4 0-0 4, Sellin 0-1 0-0 0, Mason 0-1 0-0 0, Walsh 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 19-68 6-6 47.

LEWIS-CLARK STATE (17-7, 9-5)

Burlage 8-15 4-6 21, Nielson 8-16 2-2 21, Edmiston 4-8 0-1 9, Johnson 2-4 1-1 5, Souvenir 2-8 0-0 4, Schroeder 2-4 0-0 6, Burland 1-2 0-0 3, Farmer 0-2 0-0 0, Sykora 0-2 0-0 0, Weaver 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 27-62 7-10 69.

MSU-N    4   18   15   10—47

LCSC    18   16   9   26—69

3-point goals — Montana-State Northern 3-21 (Lorton 1-3, Gunter 1-5, Goldhahn 1-7, R. Kehr 0-1, Sellin 0-1, Walsh 0-1, P. Kehr 0-3), Lewis-Clark State 8-22 (Nielson 3-7, Schroeder 2-4, Burland 1-1, Edmiston 1-2, Burlage 1-3, Farmer 0-2, Souvenir 0-3). Fouled out — Johnson. Rebounds — Montana State-Northern 39 (Hoyde 14), Lewis-Clark State 46 (Johnson 18). Assists — Montana State-Northern 9 (Hoyde, Lorton 3), Lewis-Clark State 17 (Souvenir 6). Total fouls — Montana State-Northern 13, Lewis-Clark State 11. Technicals — Montana State-Northern team, Lewis-Clark State team. A — N/A.

Edelman may be contacted at bedelman@lmtribune.com or (208) 848-2277.

Recommended for you