The Gophers womenâÄôs basketball team lost Friday night against Quinnipiac, 64-62. This was the first game of the St. MaryâÄôs tournament in Moraga, California.
Minnesota shot poorly in the second half and allowed Quinnipiac to nab the victory with a go-ahead shot in the final minute.
The game was a back and forth battle with many turnovers. The Gophers led 34-31 at the half, but bad shooting in the second half allowed the Bobcats to pull ahead.
Minnesota was unable to make a shot for the first four minutes of the second half. Minnesota shot only 37 percent on the night. Tough defense allowed the Gophers to stay in the game, but couldnâÄôt lead them to the win.
Senior Kiara Buford had been the steady force on the young Minnesota team, but had an off night. She wasnâÄôt able to make a basket until six minutes left in the game. She tried to place her stamp on the game by leading the team with a late surge, but came up short.
Buford finished with 10 points.
The sloppy play and poor shooting allowed junior forward Katie Loberg to put up big statistics on rebounds and put-backs. Loberg had a double-double in the first half and finished with 15 points and 13 rebounds.
Freshman Rachel Banham had an up-and-down evening with 12 points and six turnovers.
The Gophers continued to have difficulty with their propensity to foul. They had 21 fouls Friday and have averaged 19 fouls per game this season.
Leah Cotton has been a spark-plug both offensively and defensively, but she was in foul trouble most of the game and only played five minutes.
Minnesota had 17 turnovers and lost the rebounding battle 42-38, which included allowing 16 offensive rebounds to the Bobcats.
The Gophers will next play the loser of Virginia Tech and St. MaryâÄôs in the championship game at 7 p.m. Saturday night.